Articles for Chicken Keepers, by Chicken Keepers | May 2017

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May 2017

7 Coop Bedding Materials and How to Choose the Right One – Hobby Farms
20 Most Popular Chicken Breeds! Great Addition To Your Flock! — Types of Chicken
Choosing a Good Laying Hen | TBN Ranch
Portable Chicken Coops | Chicken Coops in Lancaster PA
Chicken Coop Designs for Backyard Chickens | HGTV
Abnormal Chicken Eggs: What You Need To Know! |
Speckled Sussex : the right breed for you?

SIlkie 5 months

How to Determine the Point of Lay | TBN Ranch
Cleaning Farm Eggs | TBN Ranch
What Not to Feed Chickens | TBN Ranch
The Chicken Chick®: Araucana, Ameraucana or Easter Egger (Olive Egger,Rainbow Layer): What’s the difference?

20 Most Popular Chicken Breeds














Silkie Under Cover

This is Peaches, she is one of my almost 3 month old Silkies… and the only one interested in fresh greens. The others would rather stick with chick crumbles… and the vitamins I sneak in there.

Big Bang Flock 12-3-13

New chicken coop roof! The board on top is only temporary while the glue on the edges dries. Sorry for the quality of the pics, I had to rule out hanging from a tree limb to get a better shot.

What’s Going on at TBN Ranch

Sunday, Phoenix is expected to reach triple digits. It won’t be long and we’ll creep up to 105, 110, and by June, 115. As the temperatures rise, keeping chickens becomes a real challenge.

I’ve already started to prepare, but this time I will be tested even further with my older semi-retired flock. Not only are they compromised by their age, but they are all way too plump fat. This past winter was colder than usual and all my birds had a very late molt. So their naked butts didn’t freeze, I gave them scratch feeds and oats on top of their normal ration of layer pellets. Now they are huge.

Brooder Box

I found a gold mine a the grocery store that only a chicken keeper would understand. Certainly the produce manager didn’t, but although reluctant, he was accommodating. Ever see those huge octagon watermelon bins? Well my first thought was definitely not on watermelons, all I saw was a perfect brooder! The manager said they were supposed to be recycled and not to be given away. But when I explained what it was for, and that it was my birthday, he said ok! Happy Birthday to me!

The watermelon box is in the garage where it is being transformed to the ultimate brooder. If it’s sturdy enough to hold 50 watermelons, it certainly will accommodate baby chicks for years to come. I even have some left over ceramic tile for the floor, I feel like a kid at Christmas! When I have it done and moved to the feed shed I will take pictures.

Prickly Pear

I planted 70 sunflowers as a shade source for my birds, unfortunately the farm bunnies have eaten all but 10. Guess as a cactus gardener it slipped my mind that protecting the seedlings was crucial to their survival. Duh. But my Prickly Pear cactus are stunning! –>

I still haven’t bought a new chicken coop, but I do have a plan. Come Fall I would like to move all my chickens to one place… from three. Keeping in mind that I’m a complete novice to having a vegetable garden, I’d still like to give it a whirl. The most convenient spot for that is where my fancy polish hens are… so the ladies are moving.

As far as the new coop, I do have my eye on one. It was featured in a previous post, you can see it HERE. I don’t mean to offend the builder, but it looks like a fish cleaning house.. and that’s probably exactly why I like it! The real selling point on this coop is that it’s local built, no shipping! Building this structure means all my birds will be in a shady area just steps away from the barn. Then, I’ll be growing vegetables in the Spring? Don’t worry…  Google.

Thanks for stopping by and have a great day!

TBN’s Pretty Polish Hens

These are my fancy ladies, all are Polish hens hatched Oct 1st, 2011. This breed is not only stunning but a productive medium sized white egg layer. They are consistent layers of about three eggs a week in summer, and these ladies below take the winter off.

Penny Lane White Crested Lady Silver Laced 2013 Penny Lane White Crested 2

Polish chickens are heat tolerant, not broody, very docile, friendly, and if that’s not enough… pretty to look at too!


The History of Murray McMurray Hatchery

Murray McMurray hatchery is where many of us buy our poultry, they sell quality birds, tons of supplies and offer excellent customer service and support. That might be all we need to know, but the company has a history, a long history, and I’d like to share with you their story…

Murray McMurray officially started his chicken business in 1917. He had always been interested in poultry as a young man and particularly enjoyed showing birds at the local and state fairs. He was in the banking business at this time and sold baby chicks through the bank to area farmers and hobbyists… Continue reading