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A spot for country folk and city slickers alike to chat about random things that may pertain to country living yet may not necessarily warrant a thread of their own.

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The system I used for keeping chicks in the same coop with the adults this year seemed to work really well.

What I did was fence off a small section of the bigger chicken coop and hung a heat lamp or two from the ceiling. Then, as the chicks got bigger and began to outgrow that I added a length of taller chicken wire to both give them more room and keep them from roosting or getting over it. But of course that only lasted so long and it was time to let them have run of the coop with the adults. 

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Being separate but visible to each other seems to have made for a smooth transition into the flock for the young pullets with only minor pecking. In fact, last night I saw that half of the young pullets were on the top roost with the adults. 

The question arose though about how to let the adults out and keep the young ones in. I tried a couple ideas, none of which seemed to work and it was obvious I had to keep the door open. I was a little concerned they were too young ( about 2 months old ) to be outside in the pen but it was better than keeping them indoors with the heat as it was. They stayed in for about 5 days while the adults went out, and then suddenly all decided to explore. All I could do was hope they'd go in on their own and they did with no issues. I also made sure the adults stayed in the pen instead of free ranging like usual, not sure if that helped but it couldn't hurt. 

I'll likely get rid of the older birds once the young ones start laying, and then get on a cycle of adding new birds every other year using this "system".

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For years when I collect eggs and there's one or two that are particularly messy, I don't bother cleaning them. I just throw them out into the field for the animals to find. What I learned was that the crows caught on and even when there's none out there, I'll see them looking around for one. LOL

Today as I went to let the chickens out, the crows were going crazy, making a racket. So I looked to see what the rumpus was and they were chasing a hawk away. 

I think they're gonna get some eggs later. 

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I am probably super late to the game on this, but bear with me. 

I read somewhere that in order to get rid of a water stain on a ceiling before painting, hit it with a mix of 2 parts water and one part bleach. That did the trick, room painted and only a very faint spot if you know where to look. 

While washing the siding this week, I was having a tough time getting it really clean, even with a power washer. So for giggles, I used the above mix. WOW what a difference that made. I ended up spraying the whole half of the house, by hand, and rinsing with the power washer. The siding looks brand new. ( Note: It's WHITE siding, I have no idea if it's safe for other colors. )

This week I wanted to get rid of some moss on the roof. I looked online and saw that a 1:1 mix of bleach and water will kill it. Then you just rinse. I'm happy to report it definitely killed the moss, and I'll treat again in Spring to get rid of remnants. 

Our porch railing has been a thorn in my side for years. I can never get it really clean and end up painting over whatever is growing on there. But what I noticed today was, where I got some of the bleach water on the railing below where I was working, there were spots of bright white. 

I sprayed some on the decking, which is stained mahogany, to make sure it didn't affect that. And it didn't appear to. So I sprayed down a section of railing. Holy shit, what a difference. Spray, wait 5 minutes, spray with the hose to rinse. You can see the difference in these pics:
 

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My wife took the day off and left to go shopping. She asked if I needed anything. 

"More bleach!"

I'm gonna try a 2:1 mix just to make sure I'm not wasting bleach, but I know the 1:1 will work for sure. 

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Of course now I reek of bleach and need to shower before going to work, LOL

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On 8/16/2023 at 10:51 AM, Chris said:

For years when I collect eggs and there's one or two that are particularly messy, I don't bother cleaning them. I just throw them out into the field for the animals to find. What I learned was that the crows caught on and even when there's none out there, I'll see them looking around for one. LOL

Today as I went to let the chickens out, the crows were going crazy, making a racket. So I looked to see what the rumpus was and they were chasing a hawk away. 

I think they're gonna get some eggs later. 

I’d say they deserve some eggs.  I’ve heard crows are very intelligent.

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The young guy at the store where I get my feed informed me that they were going to be carrying a new line of feed. He gave me a sample bag of this:
 

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He told me they have several customers using it, and they swear it's better than layer pellets. Said they're chickens LOVE it and lay more. I told him I'm sure the birds love it, it's practically candy for poultry. Just looking at it I knew it'd be expensive, though he couldn't tell me the price yet. I asked if they'd be carrying pellets still, because I wouldn't be feeding my flock this stuff. He said they would, just from this brand. Which kinda sucks man, I've been feeding my animals Blue Seal since I was 16 years old and working at the local feed store that first carried it here. But okay, it's not like I'll have a lot of choice if they switch, so long as I'm not feeding them this stuff, which is like caviar for chickens. 

Here's a closer look at the sample bag:
 

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I looked at the website, and it's 29.99 a 50# bag. I might consider feeding this if I had one or two show birds.... maybe. Otherwise? Screw that.

A big part of me wonders how much this has to do with all the suburban/ homesteading "experts" that have popped up over the past couple years. The ones that build a Taj Mahal coop, get a half dozen birds and 6 months later are blogging or doing YouTube videos. 

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Cracked corn , field peas , millet some unknown pellets and maybe a bit of black oil sunflower seed , etc ? Even looks expensive … 

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15 minutes ago, Hal said:

Cracked corn , field peas , millet some unknown pellets and maybe a bit of black oil sunflower seed , etc ? Even looks expensive … 

Sure does.

Theres black oil sunflower seeds and little pellets in there as well. All covered in what looks like a light coating of molasses or something.

I gave them some today then just dumped the rest in with the scratch grain. I throw a little of that in the coop each day to get them scratching around, which stirs the floor litter up. 

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After decades of selling eggs in nice, new egg cartons I've decided it's time to start reusing them. With the price of feed and everything else, I have to find a way to cut some costs somewhere, and the price of those has gone up like everything else:

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And they're not doing free shipping on large orders anymore, looks like.

I'm sure I'll end up having to buy some at some point, but every bit helps in the meantime I suppose. 

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There is actually. It's called "medium rare."

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According to the 2022 Census of Agriculture data, there were 5,693 farms with laying hens in New York state. The inventory of laying hens on these farms totaled 6,388,603. This included 4,689 farms with small flocks of 1 to 49 laying hens and 9 farms with 100,000 or more laying hens.
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