Sunday, November 20, 2011

Another of the Many Uses for those WoNdErFuL Eggs

All of my 6 chooks are Working Girls now.  I have 2 Elderly Dames as well, one is still producing and the other, well, she is enjoying retirement.  Egg overabundance can really be a mind stretcher - what to do with those extra eggs?  I hate to waste them, and what we don't eag, bake with, or sell need to be put to a good usable use!  What to do, what to do.....?

Here's a great idea - a beauty recipe for your hair.  Holidays are fast approaching, and if your mane, short or long, needs a little conditioning, this may be just the thing!

Deep Conditioning Egg Treatment
How it works: Eggs are rich in protein, a component of hair, so eggs restore and nourish your strands. Eggs are also renowned as one of nature's best moisturizers.
  1.  2 egg yolks
  2. 2 teaspoons of olive oil 
  3. 1/8 cup of water. 
You may want to double or halve these amounts, depending on the length and texture of your hair.  Mix well, applying to hair after shampooing. Leave the mixture on for at least 15 minutes. Rinse well with water.  No other conditioner needed!  Use this treatment once a week for continued results.

 the ChickenWrangler

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Happy Halloween! No TRICKS, Please!

I was preparing some goodies for SHARING at work (we are not allowed to have "potlucks", but we CAN "share").  I made Caramel Corn and DEVILISH EGGS -
They turned out fabulous - Goblin Eyes Recipe HERE!  The recipe calls for black olives, and since I had a few left over, I tippy-toed out to the hen house and offered them to the "girls" for a treat!
They loved the olives, of course!  I generally get 'gang-rushed' when they see me approaching.  They love ME, and the TREATS!  It will soon be time for them to try on their costumes....scroll down......

- and Monday Night is the BIG NIGHT FOR TREATS!  After all....I don't want them playing any TRICKS!!!
the ChickenWrangler

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Treats to Keep Your Hens HaPpY - or you might get a TriCk!

My hens have gotten access to wild seeds, bugs, and grasses during the months when the weather cooperates.  In Michigan, those days are becoming shorter and shorter.  Soon Old Man Winter will be arriving.  The food that Mother Nature provides is what's best for laying hens, and the greens provide Omega 3's which contribute to the health of hens and the tasty and healthiness of the eggs those hens produce.
 This past summer I started offering the Purina Feed with extra Omega 3.  The price is the same as a 50 lb bag of Purina Layena, except there is only 40lbs in each bag.  Boo.  But, the hens seem to like it as well as the Layena.  I'm not noticing any difference in color of the egg yolks since switching to the Omega 3 brand.  But, in winter when the greens are non-existent, I offer frozen spinach greens and other fresh greens to the hens to help keep their boredom at bay, and to add to their micro/macro nutrient levels.
Another product that has been popping up in our TSC stores is the Meal worm Frenzy - freeze dried Meal Worms!  I thought the idea was unique, and creepy....but, the worms are packaged when dried, and actually smell like peanut butter...AND - the Working Girls and new Pullets alike are actually crazy about them once they taste 'em! 
 The meal worms packaged in this fashion are a little pricey (almost $10.00) and so I ration them out, using them for training or just special occasions...Live meal worms would be less expensive, I'm sure.  And perhaps healthier.  And probably don't smell much like peanut butter.  But, just look at the response I got to an open handful of these treats!
Yes, they ARE spoiled, aren't they?  But, they provide us with those tasty eggs, so they're well worth the pleasurable treats I "shell out" now and then!  Currently I have been collecting 6 eggs a day. 
 That means 2 pullets have not yet started to lay.  Maggie May is one of them - her comb is not large enough nor is it red yet - but I'm not sure who the other "slacker" could be - perhaps one of the Buff Orpingtons - one has a pinker colored comb than the other.....So hard to tell at a certain point in time. 
Maggie May is pictured above.  She's not as full bodied as the other hens, but she's very pretty.  She has lovely green legs - perhaps she will lay green EgGs to match!  She's the prankster - this evening I found her roosting at the peak of the hen house, outside, 6 ft in the air!  Hubbs had to remove her - but her little toes were clutched around the edge of the rooftop!  Think she needs her wings trimmed back a bit..... More later!
the ChickenWrangler

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Sunday Funnies

Happy Sunday!
the ChickenWrangler

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Vacation From the Flock!

In September we were able to find appropriate pet sitters to care for our hens, horses, and dogs, so we set off for a weekend away from it all - to visit one of my sons families in Illinois.  My granddaughter, his oldest child, was awarded the lead in "Oz" - her first Community Theater play, which would run for 3 days.  We would be in attendance for the 2nd evening.  I was really "geeked"!
Hubbs and I were so proud of our little "Dorothy" - she remembered her lines, acted with enthusiasm, and sang her solo songs wonderfully!  How happy we were to be in attendance that evening!
We were also able to make a stop in Iowa at "Antiques Archaeology", where portions of American Pickers is filmed.  Their shop is small, but packed with many of the items that were "picked" during the filming on various property locations.  We noticed the Laurel and Hardy rubber heads that we had seen on one episode.  How cool is that!
 I was glad to have my camera along for a few photo ops to help us remember the time spent there, and also in a small dutch town of Fulton, Illinois, where the Hubbs (right) and my son (left) posed for another great shot - -
We toured the windmill, that was built in the Netherlands and transported to Fulton several years ago.  It's now a "working" windmill where grains are ground and the flour is sold to local residents.
So fun to visit the areas where I used to live in the late '80's until 2000, and to see how much (and how LITTLE) things have changed in the small towns that I frequented so long ago.  And so nice to come back to our hens and other critters - and back to the same-ness of daily chores!

the ChickenWrangler

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Adding New Hens to an Established Flock

Dear Miss Lizzy,
I realize you have posted about adding new faces to a flock of hens, but what advice would you give to a person who is adding ADULT birds to a flock of non-laying hens?  Will this work out well for both ages of birds involved in the 're-grouping'?
Wondering in Wisconsin
Miss Lizzy
Dear "Wondering",
The same helpful hints Miss Lizzy has given before DO APPLY in this situation: Introduce new birds as close to dusk or nightfall, when its ROOSTING TIME for all.  When the birds awake in the morning, little or no notice will be taken for all concerned, as they've had all evening and morning to get used to the new scents and an extra 'head count' taken at nightfall.
"Nameless" Animal lover
As a matter of fact, just the other week a couple of "new-bees" were added to our flock of young pullets back here in the Woods!  oooOOOOOOoooooo!!!  A young girl (who shall remain nameless!) had to re-home her 2 beloved laying hens, LuLu and Gertie.  After investigating other options, she came in contact with 'the ChickenWrangler', and what good fortune she had that day!  The family came over to do some investigations of the grounds and of Coop Security.  Lucky LuLu and Gregarious Gertrude, after a brief stand-off with the established flock, were able to remain on the top of the pecking order because of their age status as "ready producers".

Royal 'New-Combers'!
Age before Beauty, Miss Lizzy always says! oooOOOOOooooo! However, if there is an elderly hen that has neared the end of her laying days, it is best to add her to a group of 'Retired Senior Citizens' because the younger gals may perceive her as INFIRM and could challenge her authority in the days ahead, leading to an unhappy ending.  Likewise, remember to quarantine any birds that may appear ill or a little "off", since the needs and desires of the MANY will outweigh the needs of the FEW (meaning the Best Eats will go to the healthiest of the flock).  One must always think of the whole flock as well; you don't wish the rest of the birds to come down with any ills that affect one or two birds.  Always have a 'House of Isolation" at the ready.
    Miss Lizzy hopes this answers all of your concerns.  oooOOOOOOOooooo!
Miss Lizzy, signing off!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Summer's Over, Fall's Begun!

Some of the trees are just beginning to color up for Autumn - my favorite time of the year.  It doesn't seem that we've had much of a summer - the weather has been so humid, which is not typical of Michigan.  Generally we have a few hot and humid weeks, but this year its been unbearable!
Borrowed Photo - Cute, eh?
One of my hens went broody in July, and at first I thought she might be a bit under the weather - she would just sit in the nest box and was non-producing.  No eggs, just sitting there.  I would put her outside, she'd eat a few bites, then chase the other hens around for a while.  Again I would find her indoors, just sitting.  I have generally selected breeds that do NOT get broody - I want eggs, not chicks.  I have no roosters.  But this girl started sitting on STONES - Peach Pits - ANYTHING she thought she could hatch!  When I noticed that, well, I figured I needed to stop it right then and there!  She was not ill - she was BROODY!

I got a large airy cage prepared for her and placed it up off the ground, then placed her inside of it with food and water.  She was ANGRY!  She kept running around inside of it, hackles raised, tail feathers standing at attention - nothing would calm her down.  So, I let her be.  She had protection from the weather when she needed it, and clean food and water every day, twice a day.

She remained in the cage for 1 1/2 weeks, and after I let her out of Chicken Prison, she was COOL, calm, and collected!  Raising of the cage reduces the hens' body heat. Isolating her in an open area helps her change her mind set and get it away from being in seclusion.  It worked very well; she was just fine and started laying again in another 2 weeks.

Happy Fall, y'all!
the ChickenWrangler

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Sadie Mae, the Traveling Friendship Bag!

Cindy over at Rick-Rack and Gingham came up with a wonderfully unique concept for a gift to help cheer a special lady.  One of Cindy's friends tragically lost her husband and home during those horrible tornados in Alabama.  Cindy's idea included the help of some willing bloggers, and I, along with many others, volunteered to be one of the "assistants".

Enter: the Traveling Friendship Bag!  Cindy's named the bag Sadie Mae.  Several of us signed up to take Sadie Mae for a few days, snap a few pictures and send her on to her next destination.  We've been asked to tuck a recipe card, a post card from our town, and a message of hope or prayer for Cindy's friend into one of Sadie Mae's pockets.  After traveling throughout the States for a couple of months, Sadie Mae will head back to Texas at Cindy's home so the messages can be organized, and Sadie Mae can be gifted to her friend.  
My surprise from Retro Revival!
One of the things Cindy also asked of us was to include a small gift for the person we would be mailing the package to next.  This is what I received from Retro Revival after she "reviewed" my blog - Guess it would not be too hard to select a little something for ME, eh? It's a darling "Spring-eee Chicken" ornament made out of metal - and it sure can SPRING!  The colors are so "retro", and it sure brought a smile and a hoot from my husband when I SPRUNG IT on him!
Leslie, Eggs, and the Friendship Bag!
After reviewing Sadie Mae's travel plans, it appeared she would be a little late getting to her destination if I kept her more than a day before mailing her on to the next blogger.  So, I packed her full of EGGS to bring to my good friend Leslie, who works with me at a durable medical equipment store.  Les has been ill and at home for a few weeks with vertigo that just would not leave her alone.  She needed eggs, which my hens were glad to provide, and so, I snapped this photo of my co-worker with Sadie Mae at our work place.  What better use for a friendship bag than to provide nourishment for a friend??  Sadie Mae is indeed a lovely traveling tote, and after adding my postcard from Michigan, I wrote down a great recipe for a Michigan Lumberjack staple food - the Pasty.  It is a simple but tasty meal in pie crust, and can be eaten with one hand around it and the other hand around a mug of coffee or a bottle of cold beer!  If anyone would like the recipe, let me know and I'll add it on a future post.  In the mean time, stay on top of Sadie Mae's travels to her next stop at Rick-Rack and Gingham.
Happy Independence Day -
the ChickenWrangler