"Watching Chickens Free Range is Better Than Cable TV!"

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by lust4life, Oct 5, 2012.

  1. lust4life

    lust4life Out Of The Brooder

    Hi Everyone!

    Although I'm not new to chickens, I am hardly a pro, having only kept them for about six years. Prior to that I worked for many years with both wild and domestic birds, but chickens are in a class all of their own, being bred for rapid meat/egg production and not necessarily long life. All that egg-laying has gotta take a toll, I'm tellin' ya...

    I guess we've been lucky--- so far. Our only losses have been to the occasional hawk, a neighbor's dog who got loose, two from possible laying issues, and recently one to some sort of cancer/tumors in her abdomen/bowel. (I finally got up the guts to do a necropsy and I'm glad I did because after seeing the condition of her insides, it was a good thing she went quickly and it was obvious there was nothing we could have done to help her, poor baby. This was a relatively young Buff Orp-about two years old.)

    Our girls all have names, great personalities, and we pride ourselves on providing an optimum environment for their health and happiness. We've had all kinds of breeds and we agree, for the most part, with the breed descriptions of their temperaments, but of course they're all individuals.

    We still have two of our first group ever, now six years old. Yolk-O is a Cuckoo Maran and Hazel is a Golden Laced Wyandotte.
    We've tried the rooster thing since we got a "Free" Roo in our first shipment. Horatio was a handsome RIR and was GREAT until about two years old when he became possessed and was attacking us to the point where I couldn't walk outside without carrying a broom. He finally went for the BIG SLEEP at the vet (yes, we're softies) after he tried to take out the Termite Inspector's eye, but not before my hubby thought it would be cool to let the two eggs hatch out that our Yolk-O was brooding. After all, 50/50 chances mean we'd get at least ONE hen, right? Wrong! We ended up with TWO nasty Roos, little Horatios reincarnated, Horace and Harold.

    So--no more Roos UNTIL I thought I'd try one more before giving it up. This new group has a handsome Buff Brahma boy who we hope will be gentle. (Originally we'd gotten a Partridge Cochin, but he died at a week old for unknown reasons... again part of the problem we're having with the current group of chicks.) But since he's already jumping on all the girls in an aggressive way, I don't have high hopes for him at this point.

    We've consistently had great success raising and keeping our free-range girls. They were purchased over the years as day old chicks from reputable mail-order hatcheries.
    However, our newest group of mail-order chicks has suffered a variety of problems I won't go into here. I don't know if the genetics are getting worse now that more people are "Crazy for Backyard Chickens" and so there is more indiscriminate breeding to meet that demand or what, but it's frustrating. Who knows what nasty roosters or genetically compromised hens are creating those darling chicks we all want!

    With regard to raising chicks, we're doing everything exactly the same--or BETTER, since we're more experienced--- but with this group it's been one thing after another. I've always named our new chicks, but after Humphrey, the Cochin Roo, died (he was the only one I'd named so far) I decided to hold off until I know they're going to be around awhile. The latest problem is our Jersey Giant Girl who is tucking her head and running backwards. I posted about that on another thread, and we're working with her. Hopefully she'll improve.

    That's about it! Glad to be on the board and I looking forward to sharing with all of you.

  2. boochaces

    boochaces Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 20, 2012
    FREE RANGE RULES!!!!!!!!!!

  3. redsoxs

    redsoxs Chicken Obsessed

    Jul 17, 2011
    North Central Kansas
    I agree totally! And I think a lot of my free range birds are on average a little brighter than many of the folks I see on some of the reality T.V. shows! Good luck to you! [​IMG]
  4. jbirds2012

    jbirds2012 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 14, 2012
    paicines, ca.
    wow !!! sounds like you know how to keep yourself busy. glad to have ya aboard !! :)
  5. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

    Jun 28, 2011
    Rep of Ireland
    Hello and welcome to BYC [​IMG] Glad you joined us!
  6. Red Barn Farms

    Red Barn Farms ~Friendly Fowl~

    Apr 12, 2012
    Kentucky Heartland
    Hello from "the rolling hills" of Kentucky. Welcome to BYC!

  7. Kevin565

    Kevin565 Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    Dec 22, 2009
  8. PFSfarmer

    PFSfarmer Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 25, 2012
    My Coop
    There is a lot of great people and info here.......[​IMG]
  9. tiki244

    tiki244 Flock Mistress

    Jan 1, 2008
    [​IMG] Wow sorry to hear about the problems with the new chicks. Did you post in the emergencies section? Thats so sad. :hugs
  10. weimarmama

    weimarmama Overrun With Chickens

    Jun 4, 2010
    My Coop
    :frow & :welcome from Alabama. Glad you joined us.

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