While chickens preen in the spotlight, geese are the historic unsung heroes of small farms and homesteads. Providing weed control, large eggs, and entertainment, and acting as "security" over other animals, geese are the ultimate modern homesteading companion. The Modern Homesteader's Guide to Keeping Geese covers everything you need to know to raise geese, including: •Profiles of breeds and how to select the best one for your needs •How to "imprint" goslings on a person •Feeding, housing, animal health, and cold weather care •Using geese for weed control, soil improvement, and as "watch-geese" •Cooking with goose eggs and meat Additional coverage includes a look at the rich history of geese on farms in North America and Europe that will enhance any goose keeper's enjoyment of these intelligent and unique birds. This practical guide is a must-have essential for the kitchen table of homesteaders, small farmers, permaculturists, and professional farmers looking to add the power of geese to their land.
This definitive guide to North American barnyard and wild fowl includes a brief history of each breed, detailed descriptions of identifying characteristics, and colorful photography that celebrates the birds’ quirky personalities and charming good looks.
Poultry Breeds is a fresh field guide of feathered friends with stunning photos highlighting the beauty and unique attributes of 104 chicken, duck, goose, and turkey breeds. Each profile outlines the bird’s history, physical characteristics, and common uses, with specially noted fun facts sprinkled throughout. This pocket-size, browsable guide is easy to use, and author Carol Ekarius knows her birds: She has been writing about livestock for nearly 20 years and has raised her own for decades.
The concept of silvopasture challenges our notions of both modern agriculture and land use. For centuries, European settlers of North America have engaged in practices that separate the field from the forest, and even the food from the animal. Silvopasture systems integrate trees, animals, and forages in a whole-system approach that offers a number of benefits to the farmer and the environment. Such a system not only offers the promise of ecological regeneration of the land, but also an economical livelihood and even the ability to farm extensively while buffering the effects of a changing climate: increased rainfall, longer droughts, and more intense storm events.
Silvopasture, however, involves more than just allowing animals into the woodlot. It is intentional, steeped in careful observation skills and flexible to the dynamics of such a complex ecology. It requires a farmer who understands grassland ecology, forestry, and animal husbandry. The farmer needn’t be an expert in all of these disciplines, but familiar enough with them to make decisions on a wide variety of time scales. A silvopasture system will inevitably look different from year to year, and careful design coupled with creativity and visioning for the future are all part of the equation.
Whether you live on 1,000 acres or 1,000 square feet, there’s plenty of room in your backyard for a flock of chickens. Join the chicken revolution today and be prepared to reap a lifetime of benefits that goes far beyond the enjoyment and the eggs.
In the pages that follow, we help get you started with everything from incubating fertile eggs to receiving and raising day-old chicks to building a chicken coop to keeping your birds safe and healthy. We’ve even outlined a 9-step process to help you promote legalization of backyard bird-keeping in your city or town. You’ll find top-notch advice on how to protect your flock from predators, produce the healthiest eggs, and so much more. And if your interest is in cooking with eggs and/or chicken, we have you covered.
Mother Earth News 52 Homestead Skills follows homesteader Kimberlee Bastien, as she learns one homesteading skill per week over the course of an entire year. The book details all of Bastien’s adventures, from building a beehive and becoming a beekeeper to creating her own laundry and dish soap.
Keep chickens with less work and more joy! Free yourself from the burden of daily hen-tending tasks, and go on vacation without worrying about your flock. How? Turn your backyard into a hentopia: a chicken habitat that keeps your flock safe, clean, fed, and entertained, with less work left over for you. From the Vending Machine Feeder to the Refilling Rainwaterer, author Frank Hyman’s innovative building projects are designed to save time and money while taking the best care of your chickens.
The New Rules of the Roost addresses the problems that crop up when keeping backyard chickens long term. It covers a wide range of topics including guidance on organic health remedies and disease prevention, pest management, organic nutrition, the best breeds for specific needs, and the simplest and most effective options for daily maintenance and feeding. Readers will also learn how to introduce new chickens to a flock, how to manage aggressive birds, how to deal with mature chickens, and much more.
Best-selling author Melissa Caughey knows that backyard chickens are like any favorite pet — fun to spend time with and fascinating to observe. Her hours among the flock have resulted in this quirky, irresistible guide packed with firsthand insights into how chickens communicate and interact, use their senses to understand the world around them, and establish pecking order and roles within the flock. Combining her up-close observations with scientific findings and interviews with other chicken enthusiasts, Caughey answers unexpected questions such as Do chickens have names for each other? How do their eyes work? and How do chickens learn?
The popularity of egg-laying chickens is on the rise. Sustainable and fun, raising chickens is one of the most interesting and rewarding backyard hobbies you can find. In Chicken DIY, aspiring chicken farmers will find creative plans and easy-to-follow construction tips for making a safe and healthy environment for their fine-feathered friends. Veteran farmers and poultry enthusiasts Samantha and Daniel Johnson provide complete and easy-to-follow instructions for 20 essential projects, from coops and feeders to runs, ramps, roosts, and incubators. Clear step-by-step color photographs guide the reader through each hands-on project.
Inside Chicken DIY:
Serious poultry farmers and backyard bird raisers have relied on this best-selling reference for more than 20 years. The fourth edition of Gail Damerow’s comprehensive handbook is now completely revised and redesigned, making it more accessible and informative than ever. You’ll get the most up-to-date details on shelter, food, health care, eggs, chicks, and meat, and recent research into chicken behavior and communication makes the sections on flock management truly authoritative. New color photos and illustrations provide more specificity and information about chicken breeds, anatomy, and health.
Each breed of chicken listed in the field guide is thoroughly described and is illustrated by color photos. The book tells you all about the bird, detailing each breed's particular usefulness, adaptation to climate, coloration, number of eggs typically laid, foraging ability, temperament, and unique qualities. There are fun facts about varieties of chickens, as well as information about color and comb varieties, rare breeds, classification, and hybrids.
The information you need to nip problems in the bud … and, better still, avoid them in the first place. Let longtime chicken keeper and poultry expert Chris Graham guide you through 100 common problems faced by chicken keepers. You'll discover in clear and simple terms what the underlying cause is and how to solve it.
Let the Chicken Whisperer (poultry personality Andy Schneider) teach you everything he knows … and everything you need to know … about raising a backyard flock! Ditch the super-technical manuals and enjoy Andy's unique, common-sense perspective in The Chicken Whisperer's Guide to Keeping Chickens.
This eloquent and inviting visual guide explains why conserving heritage breeds is important and shows you how you can raise these breeds yourself, helping to preserve them and benefiting from them at the same time.
This from-zero-to-go guide to raising a flock of chickens in your backyard gives you the easiest route to amazing fresh eggs, as well as tried-and-true shortcuts. Tending chickens becomes a snap with this handy book's help.
In this essential handbook, award-winning garden designer Jessi Bloom covers everything a gardener needs to know, including chicken-keeping basics, simple garden plans to get you started, tips on attractive fencing options, the best plants and plants to avoid, and step-by-step instructions for getting your chicken garden up and running.
This isn't a typical egg cookbook or guide to raising chickens. Epic Eggs takes a deep dive on the eggs themselves and tells you how to raise birds that will produce the best eggs you've ever seen.
It may be true that most poultry found on small homesteads (or in backyards, especially) are viewed as pets, but they are inarguably pets with benefits ... namely, eggs. In Epic Eggs, homesteader and writer Jennifer Sartell looks at the eggs of the most common types of poultry you’d find in your backyard: chickens, ducks, geese, turkeys, guineas, and quail.
Don’t jump to conclusions! This isn’t an egg cookbook or a guide to raising poultry. Sartell delves into the eggs themselves and explains reproductive systems, egg anatomy, and how and why different colors are distributed to egg shells.
Sartell will show you a variety of breeds of birds, and what sizes, shapes, and even colors of egg they produce; from white to blue, brown, chocolate, olive, and speckled, plus heritage breeds and how to breed for specific colors.
Illustrated with fantastic color photography of eggs and their birds, Epic Eggs goes on to address how to optimize living conditions and diet for the healthiest and most-flavorful eggs, the process of grading and storing eggs, and the eternal washing debate. There’s also discussion of nutrition, baking, cooking, preserving, pickling, and dehydrating. The book ends with advice for homesteaders looking to create business plans and a section on troubleshooting.
If you want to incubate, hatch and brood chicks yourself, rather than buying them from a hatchery, this is the guide you need. Poultry authority Gail Damerow explains exactly how to hatch healthy baby chickens, ducklings, goslings, turkey poults and guinea keets, addressing everything from selecting a breed and choosing the best incubator to ensuring proper setup and sanitary conditions, understanding embryo development, and feeding and caring for newborn chicks in a brooder.