Posts Tagged ‘turkeys’

Selling Some Turkeys

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I have made the hard decision to sell Ranger our Merriam’s tom and our three royal palm hens. Well one is sitting on eggs so after she is done. I have been downsizing everything on the farm since Scott was laid off last December and I had the baby in February. We are selling Ranger for $50 and the royal palm hens for $30 each.

Turkeys Started Laying!

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Our bronze turkeys started laying yesterday. All 5 hens each laid an egg. It’s funny, it’s like one laid one and then the others said “Oh, I wanna do that!” We brought four eggs in and left one out there so the others might be reminded where to lay. I am leaving eggs sitting out on counter at room temperature until I have enough eggs to fill a small foam incubator. I’m hoping they are all fertile!

Research! Research! Research!

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It’s been so crazy around here I’m catching up on posts. I might have referred to it in another post not sure but we recently found out the turkeys we bought last early summer are not Narragansetts. They are full blood bronze instead.

You see we bought that large bunch of poultry for a great price from a guy who was very well known on a large poultry group I’m a part of. He is such an “expert” on poultry I took his word for what breed and condition everyone was.

The Delawares I got never laid one egg.and quickly died from the stress of the heat. I really think they were over age two. The marans did well. Lost some of them to heat and ended up selling them recently. They were great quality, just disapointed with the lower rate of lay of other breeds and the high amiunt of food they required to get those few eggs.

The turkeys that he said where.Narragansetts I advertised our extras for sale as Narragansetts. Even though, I know know he was untruthful I still made back my money on the birds and still consider it a bargain.

It did come back to bite us in the butt though. We sold a mature tom to a guy north of the metroplex. Hubby met the guy halfway and sold the tom for $50 which is on the lower end of average. The guy loved the tom and even he (who said had a Narragansetts hen) didn’t say anything about him not being that breed.

About two weeks after I bragged about Hoss my “Narragansetts tom” on a homesteading group and posted his picture. Quickly I was corrected by a few people saying Hoss was a full blood bronze! A few people posted pics of their Narragansetts. Honestly their pics all differed. Still not sure what conformation coloring is for that breed but what realization that came to me after viewing what seemed to be an identical picture of Hoss on feathersite.com was that I did have bronze and that the guy I so trusted had lied.

I was so confused. I am usually so good at doing my research but this time I dropped the ball by trusting someone elses knowledge above my own. That night as I was almost asleep, still mentally kicking myself in the butt I then realized “Oh No! I sold that tom as a full blood  Narragansetts!” I wasn’t sure what to do. I hoped the guy didn’t want his money back. With hubby out of work we didn’t have it to refund him. Even though I hadn’t lied to the guy, I truely didn’t know, I felt horribly guilty. We no longer had his number so I just prayed he wouldn’t want his money back and continue to be happy with the tom.

About a month later the guy who bought the tom called. He had had state come out to inspect because he wanted to sell poultry commercially. The inspector told him that his tom was a bronze. He was calling us to tell us his discovery. Hubby told him we had recently found out ourselves. The guy was not mad, thank God. He just wanted to let us know. He said he is disapointed because of how good a bird he is but he really needed a full blood Narragansetts so will be selling him. Hubby apologized to the guy and everything ended up fine.

Could have gone bad quickly, but it didn’t. I told you in the beginning I would post the good, bad and the ugly of our homesteading adventure. Here is one of the ugly. It’s embarrasing but hopefully others won’t repeat my mistake of taking an experts word for something and always double check.

I’m still very proud of Hoss my BRONZE tom and his group of girls. I can’t wait to incubate and brood a bunch of his offspring.

Fowl Decisions

Had to make some hard decisions I have been putting off about the birds but then again the newborn taking most my time makes some decisions easier as priorities settle.

I have decided to sell my Black Copper Marans. Their rate of lay was a lot lower than I expected. Besides they eat a ton because they are large birds. I have also decided to give away rather than butcher the older hens I have. They are barely even laying now so it doesn’t make sense to continue feeding them.

I will be keeping all my turkeys, one Americana (hoping she starts laying soon), and my two banty hens. I want to restart with young birds probably Black Austrolourps and Buff Orpingtons. I always love my Buffs. They will always have a place in my flock. I really want to try the Aussies. I have heard such good things about them.

Once we rehome the other birds we plan on moving the turkeys in the large three sided barn over to the maran pen. Have to put top on pen though. That will then leave three sided barn open to the donkeys again to get better out of the weather. Half the barn now is where we keep Trey our Mini Alpine buck. Once we sell him this spring (hopefully) maybe I’ll make one side into a milking pen.

I will still need to build another pen or two for my turkeys but as for now thats the plan. I’m kinda bouncing around the idea of chicken tractors again, but they’d have to be goat proof. I built hoop tractors once out of pvc and the goats made quick work of them. If anyone has any good ideas let me know.

Trimming Turkey Wings

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We trimmed the turkeys wings this past weekend. I am now almost 5 months pregnant so can’t do it by myself. When hubby was home for weekend he chased them down for my while I sat comfortably on the milking stand. He then held them while I trimmed the wings.

We didn’t trim Hoss’s wings because he is too heavy to fly. That or he is unmotivated. I posted a pic of my hubby holding a none too happy Hoss. He is not a fan of hugs. Also a picture of Hoss all puffed up thinking he is so pretty.

Updated: An Animal Census of Types (who’s who on the farm)

 

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Addie and a past baby

lisil

Lisil a mini-togg doe

Chrissy

Chrissy a Toggenburg doe

trey

Trey, our herd buck a mini-alpine

nala

Nala our mini-alpine doe

   

Nala with her babies Jasmine & Simba

Shortcake's buck Starry Night "Star"

Shprtcake's buck Sonny Day "Sonny"

shortcake
Shortcake a mini-alpine doe
bluebonnet

Bluebonnet a Lamancha doe

   

Blue

Blue our lead Jenny (female donkey)

fudge

Fudge Blue's baby Jack from 2010

buff

My Beloved Buff Orpingtons

clifford

Clifford our Sweet Rhode Island Red Rooster

 

delaware

My favorite hen, a Delaware

banties

One of my banty hens

Six day old Chicks

 

lavender

Our one last lavender guinea

 

ranger

Ranger, our Merriam's tom turkey

Cookie a californian doe

Whopper a californian buck

Twix a californian doe
palm hen
One of three Royal Palm hens
kiki

Kiki, our diva cat

          

minnie mouse

Minnie Mouse, our best mouser

cali

Cali "Cali Baby", our petite lovebug

               

linus

Linus, our great pyrennes

scout

Scout, my aussie

                    

toby

Toby, my daughter's boxer puppy

 

pig

Ivory, our Chester White Gilt (headed to butcher tomorrow)

Around the farm update

Well last night after dark we waited until after the time the chickens would roost. They all went back in the chicken pen through the small opening except Ranger the tom turkey. I don’t think he thought he’d fit. So my daughter easily scooped up the sleepy Ranger and put him in the chicken pen. Wow, I slept so much better knowing they were safe. Too many dogs about to let them safely free range sadly.

We were not able to take the pig to the butchers early yesterday morning after all. Hubby had to be at work real early so he had to put it off until Feb 15. So piggy got a reprieve until then. I went and bought her another bag of the apple flavored deer corn she loves. She is one happy piggy now. She did do something to her waterer so its leaking pretty good. I turned it off at night since its been freezing weather and turn it back on during the day when its above freezing the past two days. I don’t think she has even noticed or she would have been throwing one of her hissy fits. Yes pigs can throw hissy fits. She’ll just grab her feeder and smack it against the metal barn wall over and over again until someone comes out to see what is wrong. Yeah she is that smart to train us humans. I will be glad hubby will be home tonight after being gone a few days so he can fix her waterer. I don’t go in the hog pen. She steals my shoes.

Also it will be great for hubby to be back home so he can take over the feeding of  the goats. They really have been rough on my daughter and I lately when we try to feed. Its just a few that try to trip us or trick us into giving up walking to the feed troughs and instead drop the feed bucket. My daughter usually gives up and does this so they try this trick on me too. But yesterday when I was feeding Bluebonnet my Lamancha doe jumped up on her hind legs reaching for the feed bucket I was holding up high and instead kicked me in  the jaw with her hoof! I slapped her hard letting her know that was NOT okay. I finally got to the feed troughs next to  their metal barn exhausted from pushing against them with my legs and holding the heavy bucket high. As I walked back from their barn to the house I started to have an asthma attack. I hadn’t had one in years. It was real scary especially since I don’t have a inhaler on hand anymore. I safely got to the house and did as best as I could to get my breathing back to normal. Chest is still sore the day after but wow was that a scary ordeal. Going to have to make a call into the doctors office in case it happens again.

I am actually looking forward to the high 50’s the next two days bring in temperature changes. I need to set up the brooder cage for the chicks that will be arriving on the 9th and want to make sure I have everything bleached and ready. I also need to make sure the waterers don’t leak and I might have to buy another heat lamp since the piggy will still be using hers when they arrive.  Oh yes, and to get a bag of starter feed for the chicks. I waited until the day they came last time and got stuck with all the stores being out so I had to grind up lay pellets as a temporary fix until I could locate some the next day.

I honestly haven’t gotten much done today. Feeling kinda puny. Gonna take some vitamins and try to tackle some house cleaning since hopefully we will be doing so much work outside this weekend to do housework.

Rough day

I make it a habit to not talk too much about my kids on here but for those who are wondering I do have three kids ages 15, 7, and 4. Two are disabled so at times I have to be gone from the farm all day to go to specialist appointments in the metroplex. Something always seems to happen when we are gone and such did yesterday. I assumed the pig would get out or something but no. We arrived home to find all the chickens and turkeys out of their run and their chicken house door wide open. Most of the goats were inside finishing off their feed in their poultry bulk feeder.  I was just so exhausted we went inside and took a nap after the long drive.

A strong cold front came in overnight so this morning I tried to lure the chickens back in through a smaller opening so they could go in but the goats couldn’t. Most the chickens went in but the turkeys did not. So I decided to wait to shut the opening. This early afternoon I looked outside to see all the chickens back out again. Sigh. Its supposed to be freezing weather tonight and still I am trying to figure out how to get them back in. I am going to pray they ALL go in the opening to roost tonight. My husband has been out of town two days and I wish he was here cause he has an awesome gift of getting them back in again.