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the

house chicken recipe book


s t n e i d e r g n I Heat Lamp

Cage Chickens need a roomy cage that they can comfortably move around in. It should be at least a two foot square if the chicken is going to be small and you plan on letting the chicken out to exercise during the day.

Bedding Make sure to line the floor of their housing unit with an absorbent material. The most ideal material is pine shavings spread about one inch thick. Resist the urge to use newspaper. It is not absorbent and the slippery surface can lead to a deformity called splayed leg which inhibits a chick’s ability to walk. Many people swear by paper towels as long as they are changed often. Do not use cedar shavings. The aromatic oils will irritate your chick’s lungs, and make them more susceptible to respiratory problems later in life.

A 250-watt infrared heat lamp placed right in the middle of their living area, suspended off the ground, is most ideal. The height of the light depends on the target temperature, so get a thermometer if you are without one. Red heat bulbs are recommended because chicks do not sleep well with a bright white light constantly glaring.

Waterer & Feeder Baby chicks have special needs when it comes to water and food. Dishes can make it easy for chicks to drown, and they will certainly walk in it, spill it, kick their bedding in it, and poop in it—meaning you will have to change it constantly. For the best results, use a chick waterer and feeder.


Feed Grit Chickens do not have teeth and instead eat tiny pebbles that are stored in their crop. When the food enters their crop, the pebbles grind it up to make digestion easier. For baby chicks, sand, parakeet gravel or canary gravel, available at your local pet or grocery store, will suffice. You can either sprinkle this in their feed or provide it in a small bowl.

Optional Roosting Pole Chickens love to roost on poles or branches when they rest. You do not have to provide your chick with a roosting pole, but it will be happier if you do. A half inch diameter wooden dowel works well. Position it about five inches off the ground. Your chick may like it so much it will not roost on top of your feeder and waterer.

Suppliers have formulated special feed complete with everything baby chicks need. This starter feed comes in either crumbles or mash, referring to how ground down it is. Either is fine. If your chicks were vaccinated against Coccidiosis, they will need an unmeditated feed. If you only had them vaccinated for Marek’s Disease, medicated feed is a great way to keep them healthy for those first few months. Small amounts of bugs, vegetables or dairy should be fine for the chicks, and they will love it, but consider those a dessert, not the main course. Starter feeds contain everything chicks need to survive and thrive, and filling them up with too much of the “other stuff � can throw off their nutritional balance. Each manufacturer formulates their feed differently, so read the label and follow their instructions. Some only recommend starter feed for four weeks before moving to regular or grower feed and some combine both together in a starter-grower feed that can last up to sixteen weeks.

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Cochin

Cochins are known for being big friendly balls of fluff and feathers. They do not lay well but are very popular because of their sweet personality and fantastic mothering qualities. Cochins became popular in the 1800s when this Chinese breed was given as a gift to Queen Victoria of England, who adored them.

Silkie

Of all the ornamental chicken breeds, the Silkie is one of the most popular and beloved, and certainly one of the most entertaining to watch. They are the lap kitty of the chicken world, complete with hair-like plumage and an incredibly sweet temperament. Silkies originated in the far East, where they are still kept (and eaten) today. They have black skin and bones and five toes instead of the normal four. Silkie hens make wonderful brooders and mothers, and are even known to adopt baby ducks if given the chance.

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Polish

Polish are a unique breed of chicken with a huge bouffant crest of feathers and v-shaped comb. They are sweet, beautiful exhibition birds, but their behavior can be a bit wacky since their crest limits their vision. When in a flock with more aggressive breeds, Polish tend to be on the low end of the pecking order. Egg laying is varied in this breed—some lay well and some very poorly.

Turken

This bird looks like a turkey due to its featherless neck, but it is all chicken. Turkens were bred this way to be easier for cooks to pluck. Surprisingly, Turkens are said to fare well in cold weather despite their lack of feathers and big combs ( features that help them endure hot weather). They have an unusual look that some people do not care for, but are calm, friendly and one of the easiest chickens to tame. Turkens are quite popular in Europe, especially France and Germany.

Pic


Cochin

Polish

Silkie

Turken

cking Poultry


Prepa


aring the Bird 1

Wash.

“Pasting up” is a condition where feces builds up on the chick’s vents, blocking exit of more feces. This can kill young chicks. Causes include stress from shipping and getting chilled. Check your birds every day for pasting up and use a warm wet cloth to remove the feces. If really bad, you might need to cut the downy feathers around the vent off with scissors.

2 Preheat.

Make sure you have your brooder set up before you bring your chicks home. Scatter the bedding into the brooder, hang the lamp (an adjustable height cord is helpful) and set up the thermometer. You want the bedding under the heat lamp to read 95 degrees F. Fill the waterers and feeders and set them so that they are not entirely under the lamp nor entirely at the edges, but where the chicks can eat comfortably and not get either chilled or overheated.

3 Monitor.

Watch your chicks to see if they are comfortable. Temperature is critical in the first few days and weeks. Without the heat lamp they will die quickly. If the chicks huddle under the lamp, they may be too cold, so lower the lamp. If they scatter to the edges, they may be too hot, so raise the lamp. Throughout the first week or so you will need to keep a close eye on this.

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Dressing & Garn 7


Diapers

A bird needs a tail knob and stiff tail feathers to wear a diaper. Young birds will most likely not have their stiff tail feathers until they are about four weeks old. These custom reusable garments will allow your bird to have freedom of movement in your home without the mess. Correctly worn and maintained, the bird’s feathers will stay clean under most circumstances. The droppings are channeled away from the bird into a containment pouch to keep the feathers from getting soiled,

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regardless whether the bird is standing or lying down. The design allows the bird to preen and access its oil gland and will not interfere with its everyday activities. The diaper is adjustable, and is suitable for both growing and adult birds. Most diapers are made from a woven cotton-blend fabric. The very small sizes are made of stretchable fabric. These fabrics are easily washable, quick drying, and the elastic straps allow for ease of movement and maximize comfort. The large diapers have non-stretching straps. The diapers are breathable and can be used with or without the disposable plastic liner. Each order comes with sample liners. Additional liners can be made at home from cheap, readily available materials. Plastic cups may also be used for liners after you become familiar with putting the diaper on the bird. If the diaper is used without the plastic liner, it is recommended to use a piece of feminine absorbent pad to cover most of the diaper.

Clothes

In addition to diapers, some house chickens also get clothed. The creators of Chickens Suit stated, “Fashion is a social phenomenon, it claims to emphasize the individual. Do we grant animals an individualistic approach toward life? Can we apply these human categories to other species on this globe? Isn’t it another humanization of a world we neither wish to nor can understand?” Chickens Suit is just one of the few providers of chicken clothes. We suggest you ask a family member or friend to help you create your own chicken garments. You may think that clothing your chicken may be too much, but they will enjoy being more like their mother.


Tenderizing Activities Now that your chicken is comfortable in their new home, let the fun begin! Chickens love the company of others, especially their imprinted mothers. Allow your chicken to follow you around during all of your daily activities and do not be afraid to take them around with you on errands. Not only will your chicken provide you with good company, but they also make great conversation pieces.

Outdoor Play Chickens were meant for the outdoors, so don’t keep them cooped up inside all day. Going outside will allow them to exercise their instincts and enjoy the sun.


Grooming Many pet chickens enjoy being held and even groomed. You can give your chicken baths in a sensibly sized tupperware container, or you can just use wet wipes. Your chicken may even allow you to dry their plumage with a hair dryer. Back scratchers can be useful feather combs. Slowly expose your chicken to these new activities so they do not get stressed out or panic.

Traveling Chickens are very curious creatures and will enjoy traveling to various places. Bantams are small enough to fit in most medium or large bags. Try taking your chicken for a relaxing car ride. They will like looking out the car window, which will require a booster seat. Be sure you secure the booster seat with a seat belt so your chicken has a safe and calm ride.


The idea of a house chicken may seem unnecessary, unsanitary or even gluttonous, but these are mere myths of the starved. This guide will bring you forth from the pitiful, chicken-less existence you unknowingly brood in and fill you with a delicious life of indoor feather enlightenment. This convenient, travel-size guide reveals the tricks of transforming a raw hatched chick into a delectable house chicken, from baby provisions to tenderizing activities to even holiday dressings. Never again will you wonder what your life is missing if you commit your heart and home to an intelligent and affectionate live-in chicken. Let the fun begin!


The House Chicken Recipe Book  

This was my solution to a instant expert guidebook assignment in my Advanced Typography class at Texas State University–San Marcos.I had a h...

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