A Few of our Happy Hens

Every now and again the girls stand still for the camera, this morning was one of those rare times! Meet Lucy, Lorraine & Dottie.  All three girls were hatched in 2016.

Lorraine & Lucy’s breed: Australorpe, and Dottie is a LeghornX.

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Disabled Dottie

Meet Dottie, Miss Injury Queen. Her comb has gotten so big and heavy it has flopped over to one side limiting her vision primarily to one eye. Floppy combs are somewhat common for Leghorns, and it’s not usually a problem. But to some extent, this condition has turned into a disability for Dottie. She bumps into things, and her big fleshy appendage atop her head bleeds, which of course causes havoc in the chicken yard.

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My docile members of the flock are anything but when there’s an injured bird present, so Dottie has been moved to the chicken hospital.  She can still see the flock, and quite honestly, seems quite happy in the safety of solitude. Oddly enough, being confined hasn’t effected her egg production at all. Every morning there’s a pearly white egg in her nest, and in my opinion, a happy bird is one that’s laying! I haven’t decided yet if she will be returned to the flock at some point, or if this 4×6 coop will be a permanent home.

 

 

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Planning for Fall Chicks

Summer is almost over and that means it time to plan for fall chicks. Unlike most parts around the country, Phoenix’s springtime doesn’t always give us the 8 weeks we need to get chicks from the brooders to grow pens before it’s too hot.  I like my pullets to be at least 12-16 weeks old before the 90 degree temps hit, and that could be as early as March.

We all have our preferences, and I’m sure chicken keepers in Phoenix all raise chicks their own way. But personally, I find it a lot easier to keep chicks warm, rather than trying to keep them cool.

What will TBN Ranch be hatching this year? Silkies of course… but we’ve also expanded to accommodate laying hens. After pondering over which breeds to buy, I finally decided on the Leghorn, Dominique, and Ameraucana. Not a big fan of the Ameraucana and their rather aloof personality, but I do appreciate the splash of color they contribute to the egg basket.

As you can see I’ve been busy painting coop signage too! Here’s a few pics of the breeds that will join our flock in the near future. Gosh, if I order them get the chicks in October they won’t be joining the flock until February or March of 2017…  sure does take a long time doesn’t it?

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