Follow The Beginning Farmer's Wife on Facebook for additional personal peeks at building a family farm.

(Be sure to click both the Facebook "like" and "follow" buttons to not miss any posts.)

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Town Chores

As I mentioned earlier, we are trying to do as much learning as possible from in town, whether it's experimenting or researching. One of the things that we are experimenting with is "pastured chickens". This spring we built a movable chicken pen for our backyard. We were able to build it completely out of salvaged materials, except for some of the chicken wire. (You can see the assembly in this May posts of The Beginning Farmer) Every day, Ethan's job is to wiggle it over to a new spot in the yard. The chickens eat 30% of their feed from the grasses and what they scratch up in the grasses. The variety of greens and living critters makes their eggs quite a bit more nutritious and delicious! Ethan also checks on their feed and water every day and collects their eggs. Ideally, broilers (meat chickens) would be the ones being pastured in movable pens while laying hens would be in a moveable chicken house on a trailer (to keep their area fresh), but this is what will have to work in town.

My job with the chickens is to wash up the eggs, stock up the fridge, and then figure out all of the ways we can use them. We had originally planned on trying to find a customer or two to sell our surplus to, but we really haven't had a surplus yet. It isn't that our chickens aren't laying enough eggs, it's that we are using a lot more eggs that we did before. From the record keeping I've been doing (another important responsibility I've taken on - to see if our efforts are profitable), we have seen that the chickens are earning their keep. Their eggs are costing less than store eggs, and they are better for us!

As you can also see in the pictures, we try to include the kids in as much as we can with the chores. They enjoy helping where they are able to, they develop an interest in what we are doing, and it teaches them about responsibility.

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...