Thursday, July 30, 2009

Two Interesting Resources

There's a lot of poultry news out there. Top stories that may interest you poultry folk include a group of Columbia residents pushing the city to loosen its rules on raising chickens, and SUCCESS! Buffalo's city council has OK'd raising chickens. That's a cause for celebration everywhere. :)

Now, this may seem weird, but we think you may want to know more about fading skin spots. Does that seem vain of us, or slightly presumptuous? Perhaps. But if you are like us, you spend a lot of time outdoors taking care of your chickens and poultry. All that time outside can lead to a lot of ultraviolet exposure, which can cause skin spots, brown spots and age spots. We may be chicken farmers, but we also want to look good. Are you feeling us? Skin spots can make you look a lot older than you really are. That's why we had a lot of fun reading all about how to fade skin spots. It's quite comprehensive, and pretty interesting learning.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Quail are saving the world of science!

Did you know this? According to Texas A&M: "In the past decade, Japanese Quail, or coturnix, have become important experimental animals for scientific research in universities, federal and state laboratories, private industry and individual investigations."

I mean, we always knew that quail were a great poultry species to raise. But we never knew that, you know, quail were THAT important! Fascinating reading, really. Texas A&M goes on to say that "Coturnix are used extensively in genetics, nutrition, toxicology,
embryology, physiology, endocrinology and pathology."

That's crazy stuff. Who ever though that quail could be so important in the realm of science? Backyard quail are definitely on the rise in terms of backyard popularity. And that's music to our ears.

Texas A&M acknowledges the popularity of quail among backyard hobbyists, going on to say: "At the same time, many fanciers and hobbyists have become interested in raising these quail. Science classes and 4-H clubs find them excellent subjects for projects.
Sportsmen find them desirable for use in training hunting dogs because of their habit of sitting very tight until flushed. Gourmets enjoy Japanese quail eggs and meat—hard-boiled, pickled quail eggs are popular as hors d'oeuvres, and barbecued or charcoal-broiled quail are a delicious treat." That's even MORE great reasons to start raising quail, to say nothing about how cute the quail are!

Did anyone go to this city chicken workshop?

Out of curiosity, did anyone go to the NMSU Extension workshop that taught about raising chickens and building mobile coop? “Chickens are an easy animal to raise,” said Del Jimenez, an expert poultry, farming and agriculture specialist at New Mexico State University’s (NMSU) Cooperative Extension Service. In the workshop, Mr. Jimenez taught attendees all they needed to know about raising backyard chickens and building a mobile chicken coop, colloquially known as the famous chicken tractors, on June 30th at NMSU’s Sustainable Agriculture Science Center in Alcalde. The cool thing? This educational community program only cost $10 and included some yummy snacks and lunch. If you went, what did you think about this urban chicken workshop? Chickens have definitely taken off in popularity!

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Raising Peacocks

I'm not going to lie - raising chickens is my main hobby when it comes to raising poultry. However, like many backyard hobbyists, I've wondered what it would be like to raise peafowl. Peafowl are a little more complicated to raise compared to other bird species, simply because there is not as many informational resources and supplies out there for this type of poultry. You can't just go to the store and by peacock feed like you could for chickens. However, raising peafowl has its own group of enthusiasts and they can definitely make an exciting and very beautiful addition to your poultry yard! Oh, and did you know they are related to pheasants?

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Raising Guineafowl at Home

By some conservative estimates, there are over three million guinea fowl being raised commercially and domestically in the United States alone. This puts the guinea fowl hobby at a significantly smaller population than that of chickens, ducks, geese and even other gamebirds such as quail. However, raising guineafowl is an incredibly fascinating hobby. Guineas are unique and absolutely interesting. Some individuals use them as pseudo-watchdogs due to their protective, territorial nature and loud bird call. They are definitely an interesting addition to any backyard poultry flock. Do you raise guineas? Why do you raise them, and if you don't - tell us why you don't raise guineas!

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Seven Things EVERY Chicken Coop Should Have!

Living the Country Life magazine, the officials glossy magazine for the 14,000-member Country Living Association (and read by 760,000 homeowners throughout the United States), just published an excellent piece on chicken coops. Anyone interested in building their own chicken coops should definitely check it out. It goes over all of the basics, including space requirements for chickens and some helpful insulation tips!

Read the article: Chicken Coops on Living The Country Life.

A New Poultry Site

We just got word of a new site launched by Mother Earth News called Have you heard of it? What do you think? Now, it's now to be confused with the new, which is a message board for poultry enthusiasts. CommunityChickens, so far, looks to be mostly article-driven with none of the content actually on-site. It looks like they did get a bunch of advertisers, though!

Monday, April 06, 2009

What to do when you find a wild duck's nest?

One of our readers recently asked us, What should I do when I find a wild duck's nest? It is quite common to find wild duck nests on your property, especially if you live in a rural area near wetlands frequented by wild ducks.

According to Feathersite, "If you find a wild duck's nest on your property and don't see the mother on the eggs, don't necessarily worry. Ducks lay an egg every day or two until they have a full clutch (usually 8 to 15); only then will the mother start to sit on them. It takes the eggs 28 days to hatch from when she starts sitting all the time. When they hatch, she will soon lead them to a nearby body of water. The father takes no part in caring for the eggs or young." Read more here:

If you think wild ducks are cool, wait until you start raising ducks in your backyard! Raising domestic ducks is so fun and so many people think it's a great alternative, or addition, to raising chickens. What do you think?

Monday, March 30, 2009

What are the top 10 reasons for raisign chickens?

We found a great list of the top ten reasons people give for raising chickens over at Chicken Video. Here are some of the reasons that we loved!

    1. Taste & Freshness - Personal chickens are the ultimate source of truly fresh eggs, and nothing beats the flavor of home raised chickens

    4. Great Pets - Safer than dogs, chickens make great pets that require little care, produce fertilizer, eat bugs, are very cute, and give eggs at almost no cost, plus, if you get tired of them, you can eat them

Of course, we didn't like this reason:

    8. Awakenings - If your flock has a rooster, nobody within a hundred yards will need an alarm clock.

Read the whole list on What are you reasons for raising chickens? Share it with us!

A Duck Question from a Poultry Reader

Someone asked: "How much room do I need to give my pet ducks? I'm raising them from babies I hatched."

We're so happy you've decided to start raising ducks! A small pen that measures five feet by five feet will do just great for about ten ducklings, though you didn't specify just how many baby ducks you are raising. If you want to build an actual chicken-like coop for your ducks, make sure that is is free from drafts and secure from the elements. It is also useful if your ducks have access to the great outdoors, either via a fenced in section of pasture or a movable kennel with an open bottom.

We'll cover more questions about hatching and brooding ducklings later. Thanks for reading!

Friday, March 27, 2009

More people are raising quail!

Quail are tiny little gamebirds and don't come to mind when you think of backyard poultry hobbyists. However, a lot of people are discovering the joys of raising these tiny gamebirds.

According to Wikipedia, "Quails are small, fat terrestrial birds" that eat seeds as well as insects. The encyclopedia also says that quail "nest on the ground and are capable of short, rapid bursts of flight. Some species such as the Japanese and Common Quail are migratory and fly for long distances. Some quail are farmed in large numbers. The Japanese Quail (or coturnix quail) is kept mostly to produce eggs."(source)

Quail can be a lot of fun to raise, though the returns in terms of eggs and meat are not nearly as bountiful as with chickens. In case you're interested, there's some great information on raising quail at home over at Raise Read some of the articles on raising quail and tell us what you think!

Why should you raise ducks?

More and more people throughout the United States have begun raising ducks. Raising ducks is a lot of fun, though not nearly as popular as raising chickens. However, we expect that the popularity of raising ducks in your backyard will quickly rise.

Here's a great poultry article on Raising Ducks for Beginners on Hubpages. It covers a lot of the basics and you'll learn quite a few neat things about ducks in your backyard.


Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Squidoo: Raising Geese

Just found this great poultry link on Squidoo: Raising Geese on Squidoo. It's a Squidoo "Lens," which is a static page that anyone can create (think of it as a poultry wiki of sorts). What do you think of this goose lens? Like it? Love it? Write your own!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Beginner's Guide to Raising Ducks

Ducks are the second most popular type of poultry to raise, coming in just under the hobby of raising chickens in your backyard. Raising ducks in your backyard can be very rewarding. About 22,000,000 ducks raised in the United States each year. Most of those raising ducks choose to utilize duck housing, closed under the conditions of production of specialized duck farms in several important areas of commercial duck production. However, many duck farms also made a number of ducks for family use or raising ducks for local sale. The purpose of this publication is for the latter group. Shougang made primarily for meat. Although most of the varieties used by the relative level of poverty, ducks should try to save the eggs for food production or use of incubators. Commercial duck industry is the breeding ground for the establishment in Beijing. Pekins weight to reach the market early next year and a good egg producers, but they are poor, rarely raised a pot of chicken. In Rouen is a popular breeding farm groups. It is the slow growth is higher than Beijing, but it reached the equivalent weight of the 5-6 month period of feeding and feeding of the sheep farm in accordance with the conditions. Its economy is slowing down and feather color to make it undesirable for commercial production. Muscovy duck in a variety of other unrelated domestic ducks and are also used to some extent, the farm group. The poultry practice of feeding ducks: They are good foragers and good person. Muscovy duck is far greater than men aged women in the market. Meat production usually is the most important choice of varieties, breeding and egg production, the trend of young, white feathers, have an attractive dressed carcass should also be considered.

All About Raising Geese

Raising geese has become a popular hobby among backyard poultry hobbyists, ranking with raising chickens and raising ducks as a successful waterfowl hobby. The hobby of raising geese is made in almost all areas of the United States, although hobbyists raising geese only total some 0.2 percent of the total raising poultry population. For raising geese breeds, Emden goose breeds and Toulouse goose breeds are the two most popular varieties; many African goose breeds and Chinese goose breeds are also raised by goose enthusiasts. One of the leading resources for raising geese says that raising geese is very easy, as long as you know how to start the goose hobby such as feeding geese! There are considerable differences in geese species and strains, so that the characteristics of the goose should be fully assessed in order to better meet the needs of production. If the birds are breeding to maintain, and then the production of eggs and reproductive efficiency an important factor. Gosling if only a group of the market, the market's meat production and the requirements of the carcass is of paramount importance.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Guide to Feeding Chickens

How to feed your chickens is often one of the first questions that someone might ask as a beginner. Even if you're not new to the hobby of raising chickens, you might still occasionally wonder: How much should I feed my chickens? Can I feed my chickens kitchen scraps? Does it matter what I feed my egg layers or my meat chickens?

The simple answer: It matters what, and how much, you feed your chickens.

The best advice we can give you is to buy the chicken feed that is formulated for the age of your chickens. That's right, there are specific feeds for chicks, growing chickens, and egg layers. Each type of food has varying amounts of certain nutrients that your chickens need for that age. For example, chick starter is high in protein, and egg layer feed is high in calcium for strong egg shells.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

poultryOne undergoes major website upgrade!

Our favorite poultry web site,, has a whole new layout! We love it and we hope you do, too.

In other news, a recent zoning fight about keeping chickens in the city was recently decided in favor of the chickens. You can read the news story on

Monday, May 21, 2007

Chicken Q&A: Debeaking Chicks

Question: What age should I de-beak my chicks?

Answer: Chicks should be debeaked at about 2-2.5 weeks. However, many folks are debating whether debeaking is really beneficial. I'll discuss this later on.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Chicken Q&A: Chicken Skin Color Genetics

Question: What decides the skin color of a chicken?

Answer: The germinative layer of the epidermis is the home of the melanocytes. These are specialized cells which produce a pigment called melanin. Melanin is what's responsible for skin color. All chickens have the same number of melanocytes; however, the amount of melanin produced in these melanocytes varies among individuals. Production of melanin is a hereditary trait involving a number of genes (the units of heredity within the cell). Because of the many genes involved, skin color is a variable trait. There is also one gene that allows melanin to be produced regardless of the amount.Without this gene a chicken would produce no melanin and thus be completely devoid of skin color, an albino.

Chicken Q&A: Roosters Crowing

Question: Are roosters only supposed to crow at sunrise? I live in a rural area and hear them at night all the time!

Answer: In days long past, the only light source was the sun. Originally, the roosters did crow at sunrise (and then throughout the day) since the sun's rays stimulated them to "let loose their vocal chords"... or what we call "crow". However, now that we have lights streaming through our windows into the chicken coops, street lamps glaring down into our yards, and an array of other light rays bothering the poor, confused roosters, they end up crowing day in, day out and all night long!
Also, did you know that when a rooster crows it's like a challenge to all the other roosters within hearing distance? That is why if there are several roosters in your neighborhood, once one rooster crows it sets off a chain reaction.