TBN Ranch Bantams borderWelcome to the TBN Ranch blog, an informative resource site for fellow backyard chicken keepers. We are a hobby farm dedicated to raising a variety of bantam chicks and laying hens. Located in sunny Arizona, nestled in the foothills of a 500 acre mountain range in the northeastern reaches of the Sonoran Desert.

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The primary reason for keeping chickens varies from household to household. But for most, keeping a few backyard hens for a daily supply of fresh eggs is preferred over raising meat birds.

Maybe you’re looking for bug and weed control, or having your very own fertilizer machine for your garden. Whatever your reason, we are here to help you prepare, problem solve, and most importantly, to expect the unexpected with ease.

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Before you join the trendy circle of urban chicken keepers, you’ll want to familiarize yourself with what this responsibility actually entails.

There are a few basics to learn before you get started, research is always your best tool for success…. and there’s an array of information right here to help you in your successful pursuit.

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A Creative Chicken Coop is Half the Fun of Having Chickens

amy elizabethI can sure appreciate the dedication and effort involved to create this coop from scratch.  It’s lovely, creative, and more than suitable to accommodate chickens. Keeping chickens for many is a hobby, it should be just as fun watching them as it is caring for them. This is where the coop plays such an important role in chicken keeping. It needs to be a place you want to be too!

Putting your individual signature on a coop will turn the ordinary into a unique image of your personality.  New isn’t always better, a coop just needs to be functional, style comes from the touch of caring hands and love

Here’s an example of how much fun it can be to design a chicken coop. I found it on Backyard Chickens.

Very Low Cost But Tons of Work: Recycled Coop | by Nardo

Not sure about the “low cost” of this DIY coop, but use your imagination…  we can all find scrap materials that would add a little dazzle to our chicken coops! I like the plants inside, nice touch!

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Diatomaceous Earth for Chickens | Good or Bad?

amy elizabeth

Well? Which is it? Is it a good idea to use DE to control parasites? Could it possibly be harmful to a chicken’s delicate respiratory system? Is it harmful to humans if inhaled? These are all valid questions, unfortunately controversies over the use of DE  are many.

I‘ve done  a lot of research on the use of Diatomaceous Earth for managing parasites that effect good chicken health.  I picked two articles from who I consider reputable and knowledgeable chicken experts. Both are respected, but their very different opinions still leave me with the same question… Diatomaceous Earth, Good or Bad?

Both articles are well researched, both make sense.  Which one do you agree with? 

Kathy Shea Mormino, The Chicken Chick®

The Chicken Chick®: Diatomaceous Earth, DE. The Benefit/Risk Analysis from The Experts
The Chicken Chick®: Diatomaceous Earth, DE. The Benefit/Risk Analysis from The Experts


All about Diatomaceous Earth | Fresh Eggs Daily
All about Diatomaceous Earth – In your Coop, Garden and Home | Fresh Eggs Daily®

Feedback Appreciated

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New Silkie Bantam Chicks

After our failed hatch, the hunt was on for quality Silkie chicks. I drove too far and paid too much, but that’s what happens on short notice. Why the rush? This is the last week to start chicks without a heat source. The coolest temps will drop to 90 during the night. Days are 105 on average, and with a mist system near the brooder the temperature is just about right.
The mission of having chicks was a success in spite of the failed hatch, and now I’m just happy to have the four little fluffy butts in my barn. I’ll try another hatch in October.

Silkie Bantams DOB 8-24-15

Name a Chick and Put your Blog in the Spotlight!

I’d like my readers to name the chicks, put your best names in the comment box! If your name is picked, I’ll write a post about your blog with a link sending a little traffic your way. :)  Best names will be chosen on Sept. 3rd.

Note: The chicks are straight-run (not sexed)

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Broody Hen Drama

My Buff Silkie Randy is one of those hens that gives new meaning to the word NASTY when she’s broody. She beats up all the other hens for being near her, and even if they’re not, she’ll find a reason to chase them, tackle them to the ground, and pull out their feathers.  Needless to say, she’ s now sentenced to do chicken jail time for however long she feels she can hatch eggs that don’t exist. 

I won’t use  Randi to hatch eggs, she’s just too full of drama. I can’t even imagine what it would be like dealing with her attitude while setting on eggs.  She’s my little drama queen, and to make it worse, a freeloader! She doesn’t lay eggs, but she does have something that’s worth keeping her among the flock … her beauty.

Randi 82815

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About the Sebright Chicken

LLChicken Breed Focus – Sebright
Backyard Chickens
The Sebright is a very small, beautiful, rose-combed bantam, usually with laced feathers. They are a purely ornamental breed, very popular as pets and with hobbyists as show birds.
While usually quite friendly with people, they are very active and very good flyers and need to be confined. Sebrights are a ‘true’ bantam, not coming in a standard sized variety…  Continue Reading

Backyard Chicken Needs your Best Chicken Pics for the 2016 Backyard Chicken Calendar! Visit BYC to submit pics for consideration. Good Luck!

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