Hello all! - Newbie here

Poppy57

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Here, unless the breed can be pastured and used for eggs or meat, they aren't considered a heritage breed. So even though they were in the original American Poultry Association's Standard of Perfection, they aren't heritage. Silkies are too feather blind to pasture. Easy pickings for predators. Interestingly, polish are considered heritage even though they are just as feather blind and it was the introduction of polish into silkies that caused the modern huge silkie crests.

Silkies are way too broody for good egg production. They are very good mothers. Only breed that comes close to them in broodiness mothering is the cochins. Large fowl cochins would be my go to for other fowl species like turkey or geese. Silkies are just too little.

We only have one size of silkie here. Hens weigh 2 pounds. I think you have the two sizes like Europe does.

Not saying other breeds don't mother well, but my silkies will happily raise 4 batches of chicks a year. Broodiness was the whole reason silkies were kept for a while. The best broodies where bred and the instinct is now turned up to 11 in the breed.
That is so interesting, thank you. it is quite mind boggling at times how people can just change the status of animals and birds. One would think that once somethng was deemed heritage that it would always be so. :)

I think that I would tend to lean towards the Silkie as sitters. I am not a fan of commecial incubators at all. I feel things should be done naturally. :) Especially when folks are not going into mass production. The Cochins are quite common here with folks that show their birds. From what I have heard they are not bad as layers.
 

sumi

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Oh my goodness, you have all manner of challenges when it comes to gardening! @Beekissed and @CrealCritter are great gardeners with good tips on soil building, for when you're ready! You can pick their brains. (Apologies if I left anyone out now, I'm thinking in garden pics and updates now)

Cochins would make great incubators for you, when you get some hens. And they are the sweetest things from what I heard.
 

Poppy57

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Oh my goodness, you have all manner of challenges when it comes to gardening! @Beekissed and @CrealCritter are great gardeners with good tips on soil building, for when you're ready! You can pick their brains. (Apologies if I left anyone out now, I'm thinking in garden pics and updates now)

Cochins would make great incubators for you, when you get some hens. And they are the sweetest things from what I heard.
Thank you Sumi. Challenging it definately is and is a great deal of the reason we can't just buy any property. it is a real mission as we need to research government records to see what aquifers are under where the land is. Australia is majority a huge desert sitting on a gold mine of water, but the trick is finding out where that water is and then tapping into it. :) I will be sure to pick as many peoples brains as I can when the time comes. That is one thing about being self sufficient or homesteading - we never stop learning.

I want to thank everyone here as I have not found another place where the people are so welcoming and helpful to a stranger.

Thanks for the tips on the cochins being good sitters. I did sort of wonder if they might be like the silkies. I want to have the chcken free ranging but I need to look at the cost of preditor proofing as we have so many preditory birds, foxes, wild cats and dogs here. The foxes, wild dogs and cats we can deal with easy enough wth rapid dispatching But the birds are relentless as thee is not a lot of natural food for them.

I am leaning towards using the orchard we will have as their feeding ground as we have to enclose that with mesh to stop the parrots eating everything in sight. I figure that the chickens can do a multiple purpose in the orchard by fertilising it, keeping the bugs down and controlling the grass and weeds while being kept safe by the protective netting for the fruits. it would also be easy enough to incorporate water feeders on the drip lines too the trees to supply water for the chickens.

Here we have to think totally outside the box because all my horticultural training goes out the window here. All the principles we were taught need to be put on steroids so to speak and many things need to be more or less reinvented to combat the extreme climate.

So many challenges face us ahead, but with determination we will get there. :)
 

Mini Horses

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Hello, welcome from Virginia. East coast is different from out West, in weather and land. Many things work, not always everywhere.

Please go into your profile and put "Australia"...…:) When we read comments, or answer questions, it helps to know where one is in the World. Parrots in our fruit trees are not common here :lol: even tho other birds may be. You will have many situations that we will be interested to read about...some of your native animals are going to be far different than ours.

Are you and your DH born Australians or "transplants"? I enjoy readying about the differences we all have from all over the world. We have many countries represented by our forum members and get to learn many facts about plant & animal differences, as well as farming challenges.

Here, I have plenty of water, soil, grass, sunshine and 4 seasons, with few extremes. Those would be short lived, a month or two. Chickens, dairy goats and a small herd of OLD miniature horses (living out their retirement!) are enjoying my small farm. Life is good.
 

sumi

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I figure that the chickens can do a multiple purpose in the orchard by fertilising it, keeping the bugs down and controlling the grass and weeds while being kept safe by the protective netting for the fruits.
Absolutely! I remembered now that a winery near Cape Town let loose a flock of ducks in their vineyards to help control pests, with great success. Here's more info and benefits on poultry in orchards:

Pest, Weed and Fertility Benefits of Pastured Poultry in Orchards - The ...www.thepoultrysite.com/.../pest-weed-and-fertility-benefits-of-pastured-poultry-in-orc...
 

sumi

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I meant to ask yesterday and clean forgot, are you allowed to collect rainwater from your structure roofs etc? That could be used for watering gardens and keep the water bill down a bit. We didn't get a lot of rain where we lived in S.A. but we collected a surprising amount of water from our house roofs!
 

Poppy57

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Hello, welcome from Virginia. East coast is different from out West, in weather and land. Many things work, not always everywhere.

Please go into your profile and put "Australia"...…:) When we read comments, or answer questions, it helps to know where one is in the World. Parrots in our fruit trees are not common here :lol: even tho other birds may be. You will have many situations that we will be interested to read about...some of your native animals are going to be far different than ours.

Are you and your DH born Australians or "transplants"? I enjoy readying about the differences we all have from all over the world. We have many countries represented by our forum members and get to learn many facts about plant & animal differences, as well as farming challenges.

Here, I have plenty of water, soil, grass, sunshine and 4 seasons, with few extremes. Those would be short lived, a month or two. Chickens, dairy goats and a small herd of OLD miniature horses (living out their retirement!) are enjoying my small farm. Life is good.
Hello Mini Horses. it is so nice to meet you and thank you for your warm welcome. it is the same here - The East Coast is vastly different from the West. Mopst people do not understand how things can be very dofferent and they don't have to be that far apart to be so either. What may grow really well at your neighbours place (or the suburb) over might struggle terribly on your own place.

Animals tend to be much better with generally only the climate being a major factor.

Thank you for the tip on my lication. I had no idea of where to go to do tat. All done now though hopefully.

We have a lot of parrots here including three different Black Cockatoos (White tailed, Yellow tailed and Red tailed), Galahs ( I have a breeding pair of these ones), Port Lisbon parrots, Rosellas, and Corellas. All are exgtremely partial to fruit trees. I have a feeling I may have missed a few. They have even more parrots over East.

i will be sure to post about different situations we have here as we come across them. We have a massive variety of native animals and home to 9 out of the 10 world's most deadly snakes. I am still learning how to identify these. We also have a wide variety on non poisonous snakes too as well as a lot of diffewrent lizards. My husband and I both hold special licenc es to be able to collect and rehabilitate reptiles and other native wildlife here. We make them better and when fully recovered we release them all back into the wild.

We are both "transplants" here in Australia. We arrived here from New Zealand 10 years ago. My husband is a New Zealander and I am English born although I only spent 2 years there befor moving around Europe for another 4 years before we immigrated to New Zealand. I too love readong about other counties and especially how others cope with difficulties and challenges. There is always something to be learned from others experiences. I am looking forward to larning from the folks on this forum.

Your place sounds wonderful. I am missing regular rain and oh how I miss green grass, :) But as you said "Life is Good". We came here to have an adventure in farming, one different from what we are so familiar with.
 

frustratedearthmother

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We have several different species of poisonous snakes here in Texas also. I was unlucky enough to be bitten by a copperhead when I was a young teen. It was quite painful and the swelling that the leg endured was amazing! But, all in all it was a great story that made me popular for a summer. ;)
 

Poppy57

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Hello Frustrated Earth Mother. Oh how terrible for you. Yes I have heard tat the bites of the copperhead are painful and that many people don't survive the bites too. You were so very lucky. I am pleased that you were one of the survivors. :)
 
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