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Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Answering those burning questions.

The following questions come from April. The answers come from Phelan.

Who do you order your chickens from? Several places. I buy some local, private farm (co-ops). I buy from McMurray Hatchery, Ridgeway, and Sand Hill preservation.

What do you think is the best meat bird? I haven't had them all, so can not say for certain. You can eat all of them, including bannies which are great when canned. I know, very little meat, but you can it and have the perfect amount for sandwiches. But out of all our butchered birds, the one with the most meat was white rocks. I look for adult cockerel weight, anything over 7 lbs is good, and white feathers seem to be easier to pluck.

Are you going to sell any of your cattle? Of the current Dexters I have, no plans to sell right now. If you are looking, there is a woman that has a very good looking Dexter for sale in southern Kansas.

I've read that you can breed a Dexter with a larger beef breed and get a nice sized beef steer, what do you think? NO! Don't breed your female Dexters with any large breed. Dexter Calves are only 35-45 lbs at birth, while larger breeds weight in closer to if not more than 100 lbs. This could spell disaster for your cow. Now if you want to use a dexter bull to breed a large beef cow, than that's fine. No issues there, the calves will be smaller, creating an easier birthing process for the beef breed.

Is this enough questions?Please blogs lots and lots about the cow, how to care for them, how much it costs, how much room they need, what you feed them, where to buy/sell them, etc.....

I have been writing a series over on WNDN.

Phelan can moo, can you?

Training and Milking your cow

Calf at side milking

I will be writing more on the series.

I'm hoping we can afford some fencing this spring. We are definitely going to build a chicken tractor and raise meat birds, but I want to know what you say about all that too.Oh, and I have fed a coyote many a nice chicken dinner this fall. Dang it. Stated with 16 and now down to 8. With fencing, make sure you look at several places for pricing. We saved a bunch by heading to a store that charges more for other items we buy, but were less on fencing. as for a chicken tractor, I have the stuff to build one, just haven't got to it yet. I am sure a number of my readers can point you to posts about there tractors (hint hint).

As usual, your questions are always welcomed.


Gail said...

Informative. If I had to choose an all around performance bird, I would choose Black Australorps. They are steady layers of medium to large brown eggs, easy keepers, Roosters reach about eight pounds, and they are gentle which is a big plus when housing them. I notice no difference in the plucking by color of feathers but if I am working a young bird, I just skin them.
Keep up the good work on these educational posts.

Bethany said...

Here's my post about how we built our chicken tractor, and if you look around the December posts from last month, you'll seem more pictures of it in place and how we "winterized" it a bit.

Thanks for all the info you always share!

April said...

Thanks Phelan! I love to hear your opinion. I'm heading over to read the other links and take a look at Bethany's chicken tractor.

Janelle said...

THank Bethany for the link :)

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