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raising happy chickens

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  • #16
    I've seen chickens living in the wild. They occasionnally climb trees to eat whatever tiny fruits they produce.

    If you have a compost heap in your yard, it will provide your chickens with plenty of bugs and worms to eat.


    • #17
      Just wanted to add a link to photos....I'll try not to become obnoxiously talkative about my flock!

      Zone diet on and off for several years....worked, but too much focus on exact meal composition
      Primal since July 2010...skinniest I've ever been and the least stressed about food


      • #18
        i have eleven happy chickens, they are out during the day scratching for food, but it is difficult when there is snow on the ground!! i buy an organic egg layer mix. . . guess i should read what exactly is in the mix. i also give them all of our table scraps since i cannot compost in the winter and the LOVE them. we get bright orange yokes!


        • #19
          Ummmm.....If you're planning to let the chickens lose where your garden is, you better fence the garden. They will destroy it!
          Or an easier solution: google chicken tractors. YOu can even find instructions on how to build one yourself. Then your chickens can stay in there and you can move that around in your yard so they are still "cage free", but you just limit where they can go.
          Originally posted by cookie View Post
          i wonder if they are going to gobble up the veggie garden i am planning? should i be concerned about that? maybe they will just do the weeding for me.


          • #20
            One thing that chickes like and is actually good for them is sea shells. YOu can also use the shells of the eggs, just make sure you brak them in tiny pieces, because if you throw the hole thing for them to pick on, they might learn to crack the shells of the fresh eggs.


            • #21
              How's it going with the chickens? I have 75 babies out in my woodshed right now, kept in with chicken wire and cardboard boxes around the bottom to keep out drafts. They are feathering in nicely. 50 are free-range meat birds, from this hatchery: Home - Freedom Ranger Hatchery

              I love them cause they're not Frankenbirds like the Cornish Rocks, but still put on good meat.

              We are getting ready to build chicken tractors for them and will move them daily so they will grow on plenty of grass and bugs.

              25 are layers; some cockerels. We'll keep the mellow ones and the nasty roosters will become either capons or chicken stock. Homemade pastured chicken stock is SO GOOD; have I mentioned that? It is practically solid out of the fridge because of all the gelatin. We use the feet and organs (not the liver) in it too. Chicken feet make the best stock!


              • #22
                They're chickens. They eat corn. That's just what chickens do.


                • #23
                  LOL, that last post made me go back and read the OP.

                  The dark orange yolks are from pasturing. The more grass, bugs and worms they eat, the tastier and darker the egg yolks (and healthier, it's been shown via lab tests that pastured chickens produce eggs with more omega-3s and various vitamins, including more D, than factory-farmed hens or hens raised in a coop with no access to pasture).

                  Mine eat corn, it's not a problem. This is the feed I use. I wish I could use organic but simply can't afford it right now. (We have done it in the past.)

                  Layer Pellet - 50lbs | Poultry | Poulin Grain - Dairy, Equine, Pet, And Livestock Feeds