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  • Tag Archives raising chicks
  • Day Old Speckled Sussex Chicks-Tilly’s Baby

    Day Old Speckled Sussex Chicks just hatched out of the incubator.  

    If you remember in one of the last post we talked about Tilly the old Speckled Sussex chicken that died right after laying her last egg. She had not laid an egg all year and on her last day she blessed us with one more egg. I added this egg tot he incubator in hopes that it would be fertile and supply us with one more generation. Sept 19 we were blessed with a little baby chick coming forth from her egg as you will see in the video below.

    Baby Speckled Sussex chicks vary greatly in color from a creamy buff to dark chestnut and some also have alternate dark and light stripes lengthwise on the back.

    The speckled Sussex is a good layer of light brown medium to large brown eggs.  It is a very friendly and sociable chicken. Their curious nature will often end up with them following you around the yard if they think they can beg a treat from you.  Its plumage color is a delight to the eye being of rich mahogany base color with individual feathers ending in a white tip separated from the rest of the feathers by a black bar.  The feather pattern allows them to be camouflaged from many predators from the air such as the hawk.  This variety combines beauty with utility, and is very nice to raise for showing.


  • Raising Chickens As a Hobby, Raising Chickens As A Business!

    Raising Backyard Poultry For Fun or A Business

    Raising chickens in your backyard is a great experience. One of our customers Jeff Wellman of The Backyard Chicken Coop put together a short video of some of the chickens he raises for fun and as a Hobby business.

    Jeff started buying his baby chicks from Dark Eggs Daily this year after we introduced him to the Dark Brown Egg Laying breeds of chickens, the French Marans. He expresses how we take extra precautions to ensure our flock is free of diseases so that he will have healthy baby chicks when they arrive to his home.

    Jeff has been ordering the French Marans breeds that lay the dark brown chocolate eggs such as the Wheaten Marans and the Black and black copper Marans. Jeff also has purchased the Speckled Sussex breed of chickens form Dark Eggs Daily. The speckled Sussex like the Marans are a very nice cold hardy breed of chickens that are pleasant to raise and they get along well with each other and other breeds.

    Enjoy the video Jeff has put together and then check out our French Marans breeds of chickens for your Dark Eggs Daily


  • How to Raise Chickens, Choosing The Best chickens To Raise

    How to Raise Chickens – The 4 Essentials For Success

    So you think your ready to start raising chickens.  In my opinion that is a very good choice.  But are you really prepared?

    Many reasons can be applied for the yearning to start raising your own chickens.  It really doesn’t matter what your reasons are for learning how to raise chickens, as long as they are well thought out and your final decision is based on in depth research.

    One reason you are making the choice to raise chickens is because you might feel the necessity to stretch your food budget by having your own chicken meat and eggs readily at hand.  Becoming self sufficient is a wise choice but can cost more than what you are spending now.  But knowing where the meat and eggs are coming from and what the chickens were fed really outweighs the cost of raising your won chickens at home.

    The idea of raising enough chickens and eggs to not only feed your own family, but to sell the surplus in hopes of increasing your family income may have come to mind.   Or, it may be a life long dream to quit your “real” job (or maybe you’ve lost your job) and start your own egg or poultry business.  Make sure that you really do your research and look into feed costs compared to your return on investment that you will get for your eggs or meat you are selling.

    Regardless of the nature of your chicken raising venture, there are four essentials for success: (1) good breeding, (2) sound management, (3) careful sanitation, and (4) wise feeding.

    Good Breeding: Often many young chicks will die even with the best of care. Poor chicks, usually, are responsible for such losses. Chicks must be free from disease; they must be bred to live. And the ability to lay eggs is an inherited characteristic.

    These are reasons why breeding is the first essential for success. It pays to buy only the best chicks available, even if they cost a few more pennies than mediocre stock.  At dark Eggs Daily we really care about our chickens health and do our very best to provide our customers with top quality healthy baby chicks.

    We know how devastating it can be to get your baby chicks only to find out that they were sick from the start.

    Many diseases are passed on through the embryo during the incubation process.  This leaves you with a baby chick that is prone to diseases right from the start.

    We apply top notch practices to ensure our flock is healthy in order to supply us with the best eggs for hatching.

    Sound Management: Management involves proper care of the chickens and the equipment. There is an old saying in Scotland to the effect that the eye of the master fattens his cattle. This expression—emphasizing personal care and attention—applies aptly to poultry keeping.

    Equipment need not be expensive, but it must provide comfort, or the enterprise will fail.

    Planning, too, is a part of management. While not so important to the home-flock owner as to the commercial poultry business, it will affect costs and returns in every flock.

    For example, it costs no more to maintain a laying flock in the fall and winter than at other seasons, but during these months eggs normally reach peak prices. Therefore, if pullets and hens in the home flock are laying while eggs are relatively high, money is saved in food purchases, or money may be made by selling surplus eggs.

    Providing meat and eggs at peak prices is the result of planning. And the very fact that abnormally high prices prevail during certain seasons of the year is evidence that the majority of flock owners do not plan.

    Careful Sanitation: Lack of sanitation is the rock upon which many poultry enterprises are wrecked. Every time a chick or hen dies, costs are increased.

    This is an important cost item, shown by the fact that a 15-per cent mortality rate is representative of the losses sustained by the poultry industry as a whole. Chickens are attacked by parasites; they are susceptible to disease. Yet these menaces to profitable and satisfactory production can be controlled.

    Personally we feel that a 15% mortality rate is to high and you should not be experiencing more than a 5-10% loss if you follow careful practices.

    Prevention, not cure, is the keynote of success. The flock must be kept in a healthy condition.

    The beginner—and especially the back-yard flock—has a distinct advantage over the commercial producer. If the home-flock owner starts with disease-free chicks like provided by Dark Eggs Daily Hatchery, and clean ground and equipment, there is no reason to fear parasites and diseases.

    Wise Feeding: Poultry feeds must contain all the nutrients for growth and development and all the raw materials from which eggs are manufactured.

    Since most home flocks are grown and maintained in confinement, you will have the responsibility of providing everything your chickens need for  development and production through the feed.

    Make sure you are starting your chicks out on the right feeds with the right amounts of nutrients and protein values is very important to your success.

    The feed quality is important all the way through, from birth to growing your chickens to adulthood if you are going to have success in raising chickens.

    Also, chickens must be feed all they can eat. The more they eat, the bigger the chickens and the better the eggs. Chickens cannot eat too much.

    To increase feed consumption, hoppers must be kept full and within easy access for  the birds 24 hours a day. Commercial poultry companies place electric lights in laying houses to increase the length of the eating day. After all, high-laying strains of hens perform a colossal task; they lay many times their own weight in eggs each year.

    Learning how to raise chickens is easy, if you do the research and follow basic guidelines that experienced poultry experts are willing to share.  Planning and commitment to a flock is your first step to the joys of growing your own food supply, or even just raising a few chickens for pets.

     



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