End of year sale

We have a very limited supply of whole broilers remaining.   Our 1st batch of 2020 will be available in late May.


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New Year

Starting off 2017 with a new group of pullets getting ready to start laying.  They consist of mostly Black Australorpes, 2 Barred Rock, 2 New Hampshire red and 4 white leghorns.  We still have the 18 ISO Browns, 8 Delawares and 2 Road Island reds.  This gals should be able to keep up with our customers needs.

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Show Day

We arrived around 6am to feed and clean up the area around the cages.    I asked John Wyatt if he was nervous and he said yes.  I was good with that.   I was told along time ago that “if you are nervous than you care”.  I was nervous to,  being our 1st chicken show of any kind we both had no idea what to expect.

The show was to start at 8am.  He was all ready, looking over the crowd you could see the nervous faces of the other kids as everyone waited for the show to start.   Pen of 3 Laying pullets was the 1st class to show.  He picked out 3 of the Delaware pullets that he hatched back in February for this class.   It seemed that the judge stayed a long time at his cage looking over the Delawares.  He stating to him that the Delaware breed was one of his favorites,  that was a plus in my book.   After each class the judge would explain his reasoning on how he placed the class to the crowd and at that time he talked alot about the Delawares.   No champion trophy but he got a blue ribbon and had made a big impression on the judge.  Pen of 3 meat bird division was next.    Helping him decide on what 3 to take out of 21 was a big challenge 3 days earlier.   We ended up going for the roosters as they were bigger overall which we both felt would grab the judges eye.  IT WORKED!   The judge started out saying how much he dislikes the cornish cross breed but he couldn’t get over how well Johns 3 looked over all.  Grand Champion Trophy!  I can’t remember the last time I saw John Wyatt smile that big.

The next 2 classes that John had were pen of 3 laying hens (Buff Orphington) and individual non production (White Cochin).  Both of these classes had birds in them that we purchased last year before all the chicken classes were cancelled state wide.  He received a blue ribbon for the Buff Orphingtons and a red ribbon for the White Cochin.   We came to the conclusion that being outside on grass doesn’t make a good show bird.   Having white birds is a also a big challenge so maybe next year picking some other color birds to show will be on our list.

He had a great time as did I.  We both learned lots and it will be hard to come close to this outcome at the state fair in august.   He will be taking another pen of meat birds and this time he is going to take the rooster that we saved back with 2 of the pullets to show.                     Wish us Luck.

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Fair Time

It started on Tuesday morning, washing birds.  We had seen a couple of demonstrations on washing chickens and watched some videos on line but doing it for the 1st time was going to be interesting.   We started with washing out 3 tubes that were repurposed from old cow mineral tubes.  Filling the 1st one with dish soap and warm water.  2nd one had plain warm water for getting out the soap and the 3rd was warm water with vinegar to add shine back to the feathers.  The first one went in with no problem than the 2nd one.  Nobody was fighting it,  they just relaxed when they hit the water.  10 birds later and we were done.    They didn’t look like they could compete in anything still wet but the show was three days away, we would be fine.

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Yesterday we finished butchering the rest of the roosters.

Back on May 30th we had butchered 3 of the roosters but with the weights being around 2lbs we decided to wait a couple more weeks to let them grow some more.  The largest dressed out at 3.38lbs. being 17 weeks old we are pleased with that.   If you remember chicken having more taste when you were growing up I would suggest picking up 1 of these.   The Delaware breed are referred to as more of a standard breed broiler which will have more flavor than the present day Cornish cross.

With hatching eggs the odds are you will get half roosters and half hens.  We ended up with 8 roosters and 8 hens.  When we looked through the flock back at the end of May we had picked out the lucky rooster that got to keep on with his life so John W. has a entry in the Iowa state fair.   He was the one we thought looked closest to the Delaware breed standard.

We are looking forward to the 8 hens starting to lay, which should be towards the end of July.   We will have 3 of the hens in the Benton county fair and 2 of the hens in the Iowa state fair.  July will be a busy month.


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They Arrived

The kids were greeted with a baby chick that had hatched early Friday morning.  By Friday night we had 6 little chicks hopping around.   When we woke up Saturday morning 7 more had hatched over night with more eggs cracking in the incubator.   John Wyatt and I attended a 4H poultry seminar in Knoxville that also included a mini poultry show.  When we arrived back home in late afternoon we had 4 more chicks in the incubator and had lost 1 in the brooder.  With 6 more eggs left and no sign of them hatching I’m thinking we may be done hatching this batch of eggs.    The 16 that have hatched are acting very lively eating, drinking and sleeping.   It still amazes me that from the egg I eat every morning to these baby chicks we have now it only took 21 days.   With this group of Delaware chicks, we are  going to be feeding them strictly organic feed as hopes to offer organically raised eggs and heritage breed broilers in the near future.

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Today we got out the 27 Delaware chicken eggs we have been incubating for the last 14 days to see how they are developing.  Candling a egg is something we do every day on the eggs we collect, it shows any cracks the naked eye can not see.   Using on the incubated eggs at 14days we should see a dark mass with blood vessels not clear inside like a newly laid egg.  Out of the 27 eggs, 4 were clear which means 23 looked like the pics hear!  But we aren’t counting are chicks before they hatch.  Next Saturday they should start to hatch.  We will keep you posted.024027026025
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