Well, the temperature has dropped about 40 degrees in the past couple days, which has me super happy – I can finally start working on building coops and more videos for y’all!
The constant heat and bugs made it impossible all summer long.
I’ve been wanting to do a video web series about building coops, and it took a backseat because the mosquitoes took over the backyard.
Now that it seems fall has arrived, we can start working! I bought a new framing nailer to celebrate.
By the way, did you see this week’s YouTube video where we finish the duckling pen?
(if you watch the video and like it, please give a thumbs up & tell me what you’d like to see us build – that way YouTube knows people like our videos and it helps other chicken owners find us! Thank you!)
Luckily, we have electricity in the cabin, so we can add a heater for the chicks. The top of the incubator with the heating element has worked well, too.
The Brinsea Incubator we use has a piece of plastic that separates the heating element from the chicks, so it’s MUCH safer than a heat lamp.
We have the ducklings and chicks together. I’m normally not a fan of keeping them together, but we have just a few ducklings, and at least for now, it’s easier to keep everyone warm when they’re in the same brooder.
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We're officially over with the last hatch of the year! We got a number of beautiful chicks and 4 new ducklings! . One of the ducklings has spraddle leg, which means it's legs jut out in opposite directions, instead of under it. So, without assistance, it can't walk, just flop around. Spraddle leg can happen when the chick or duck is raised on a slippery surface, like the inside of an incubator. They were in there for just 24 hours (because opening the incubator reduces the humidity = possible problems for ducklings not yet hatched), but sometimes, these things happen. . It's easily corrected – we just used masking tape to bring the legs under the duckling. . It's easier explained in the video, which will come out on YouTube soon! Comment below if you want to see a video about spraddle legs! . . #backyardchicken #backyardlife #babychicks🐣 #backyardpoultrymag #petchickens #cutechicken #petchickensofinstagram #petchicken #babychicks #backyardchickens #backyardflock #babychicken #backyardfarm #petchick #backyardpoultry #cutechickens #babychick #babychickens #babychicksofinstagram #backyardbirds
In a week or so, I’ll probably have to separate as the ducklings get older and messier.
We’ve been giving them PCM StrongHen (TM), and based on the amount of noise they make and the amount food they eat, it’s definitely doing something for them!
We’re still getting eggs daily from the chickens – which means we’ve been making a LOT of egg custard. The chicks we raised earlier this year are all starting to lay!
And then there’s Goldie – my Ameraucana/Easter egger mix.
She lays blue eggs, but there’s some issue with her laying, because every egg has a lump around its “equator”, where the egg has cracked a bit and then had extra layers of calcium molded over it.
Sometimes things like this happen, and we know she has a good diet with lots of calcium.
It’s always egg-citing when the young ones become layers and we get their first egg. It’s a little like Christmas in the coop every morning! (You can see the coop in this YouTube video if you’re curious!)
Mama, our olive egger hen, reached the end of her long life this summer (she was about 5), and left us with several daughters.
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❕❕❗LAST CALL ❕❕❗Want to treat your hens to some healthy herbs this fall? Surprise them with 7 different blends, each designed to help your flock live a healthy life! The Nesting Herb Starter Bundle includes 5 ounces each of: StrongHen (our immune supporting blend) WormBGone PestsBGone (contains peppermint & cinnamon, which are traditionally used to repel pests, including mice) Scent of Spring (our signature nesting herb blend) Best Eggs Ever! (full of calcium!) MitesBGone (the name says it all) BreatheRight (our respiratory support blend) But there's just a few hours left, so head on over to the store!
I’m keeping my fingers crossed that some of these ladies will lay olive eggs also!
Maat van Uitert is a backyard chicken and sustainable living expert. She is also the author of Chickens: Naturally Raising A Sustainable Flock, which was a best seller in it’s Amazon category. Maat has been featured on NBC, CBS, AOL Finance, Community Chickens, the Huffington Post, Chickens magazine, Backyard Poultry, and Countryside Magazine. She lives on her farm in Southeast Missouri with her husband, two children, and about a million chickens and ducks. You can follow Maat on Facebook here and Instagram here.