rooster retirement

Fully eighteen of our twenty-four straight-run Buckeye chicks turned out to be cockerels.  Expensive fricassee, of course, but we’re over the disappointment and yesterday we culled all but three of the boys.  Now there are twenty-five quarts of canned chicken ready to go down cellar, and tomorrow there will be at least a dozen quarts of rich yellow bone broth to join them.  We hope we selected the surviving roosters well, since they will be serving our breeding flock.  With only six hens to choose from, we don’t have many options for the two or three we decide to  breed, yet, ever sanguine, we hope for great things.  Next week we’ll have to do it all over again with the ducks, a more difficult task since ducks are a real challenge to pluck — it’s hard to scald a waterproof bird.june-2015-306

3 thoughts on “rooster retirement

    1. oh, yes!  We’d forgotten that one; maybe a big dose of soap would be in order — or maybe Basic H?   Shawn and Beth Dougherty The Sow’s Ear shawnandbeth@att.net onecowrevolution.wordpress.com twosisterscreamery.wordpress.com

      Check out our new book, The Independent Farmstead Library Journal starred review: ” A solid choice for those embarking on a serious animal-based hobby or enterprise, aspiring homesteaders, and sustainable farmers who already have basic knowledge of animal husbandry and agriculture. The authors’ blog provides a nice supplement.”—Amanda ­Avery, Marywood Univ. Lib., Scranton, PA   Modern Farmer Magazine: “Expect clear-eyed advice on rotational grazing methods, improving soil fertility, and much more.” Booklist:  “As mortifying and implausible as creating one’s own self-sustaining farmstead might sound to most city folk, the Doughertys, who embarked on their own farmstead 20 years ago, make the venture entirely feasible—even ennobling in the face of climate change—on as little as a half-acre of land. In a conversational style that is both welcoming and reality-based, the authors offer a big-picture plan—selecting property, sourcing water, building soil, choosing ruminants (chickens, goats, sheep, pigs, or cattle)—that is fully supported by a level of detail both practical and comforting to anyone new to the idea. Some examples: milking techniques for cows and goats, what grasses or fencing to consider for which animals, slaughtering techniques, watering tanks, and using paddocks for livestock. Highly recommended for libraries where such farmsteads are even remotely possible.”

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