Family Friendly Farm

Our Hens

We receive the pullets when they are just one day old. For two and a half weeks they are on a deep wood shaving bedding in the brooders. We then open up the house and the pullets get to go out on pasture. The pullets circle around the house on different paddocks. Before the pullets start laying we move them to their Eggmobile.

Hens walking on the hoop house.

The Eggmobiles are moved every two weeks to a new paddock in the pasture. In the winter we have to move them off the grass so they don’t ruin it for next year. For winter we put them in a special paddock that is covered in wood chips. The wood chips capture the manure allowing for a perfect start for compost next year. Drive by if you get a chance as the winter paddock is right next to the highway. We collect eggs and quickly process them to maintain the quality.

Barbara Gorski tested laying hens in cages versus raised on pasture. Her findings are not surprising less fat, less cholesterol, more vitamin A, and more omega-3 fatty acids. The yolks are a wonderful orange color indicating the vitamin content. You can read more about her experiments in Jo Robinson’s book Pasture Perfect.

Laying hens are very curious creatures. The will often come right up to you to get a better look. Many of our hens are friendly allowing you to hold them.

Each year we watch in amazement as the weeds decrease and the soil fertility increases. We have focused on putting the chickens on the “problem spots” and watched them over the years turn to our “most productive” places. We think that is awesome!

Come by and see the remarkable green grass!

 

Turning Chickens Back to Nature

June 16, 2005

Linda Redeffer wrote an article about our farm. You can read the article entitled Turning Chickens Back to Nature in the Southeast Missourian. Darrell, our son, got to be on the cover. So cute!

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The farm, the food and the myriad of connections to health.