Flock Management

Discussion in 'Behavior & Flock Management' started by Sundancers, Jul 3, 2012.

  1. Sundancers

    Sundancers New Member

    Question ???

    Do we make a breed weak?

    Long story, short ...

    I know a man that had a climate control barn. His 4 horses never knew what hot or cold was ... it was always 75 degrees. (all year long) The riding rink was also under control ... For 7 years that was all they knew.

    It was due to an untimely accident, in early spring that the horses had to be sold and giving a dose of reality... and friend bought all four horses, just to keep them together.

    He lost two within a month ... the other two were, touch and go but holding their own ... for now ...

    This has gotten to me ...

    Out of our own "good" can/do we make a breed weak? ~ It can be any critter, horse, cow, goat or even a chicken...

    Thoughts ...
  2. Apyl

    Apyl New Member

    Yes, I do believe that by not allowing animals to be animals we can make our livestock/pets/animals weak. If you dont let your animal use thier instincs they loose them and cant get them back. Same goes for the example you gave. Sure horses can handle heat BUT if the owner is not going to allow nature to be nature then yes you do damage to the animal.

  3. cindy

    cindy New Member

    absolutely, that's why I don't heat or cool my hen house I think its better
    they ease into hot weather as well as cold weather.
  4. grow_your_brew

    grow_your_brew I sell chicken aprons!

    I agree with cindy. We do have a fairly large coop (converted from a small greenhouse). We've never heated the coop (even in -40F weather and 4-5' snow). Even our naked neck does just fine. Bear in mind though, that there have to be enough chickens for them to huddle with and the coop should be dry
  5. Mamachickof14

    Mamachickof14 New Member

    After studying this forum that is exactly what I decided! Thanks for info! Jen:)
  6. teddy

    teddy Scrambled Eggs

    I to believe the flock should be in charge of the flock. They learn the predators, and available food. They seek shade and move to new shade as the sun crosses the sky. They learn how to keep dry. They also learn how to stay warm out of the wind. They also pass it on to new flock members. Oh a lot less work for me!
  7. Roslyn

    Roslyn A Round American Woman

    Oh yes, this is true!! If you read about different chicken breeds, a group of people took the Rhode Island Red, a popular farm bird, originally a dual purpose bird, from the New England area and they took them North and bred them into a more winter hearty breed, now we have the New Hampshire. Or Hampshire Red.

    They are similar breeds, but the RIR took off and now we have a huge problem with a low quality RIR. I've had it with the breed, and I will be trying the New Hampshires or the Buckeyes next time around

    I'm not positive of the breed, but I think it may have been the Orpington, but in London during the Industrial Revolution they weren't happy with the white feathered chickens in everyones back yards. So breeding went into breeding a quality bird with black feathers, so the dirt from the industry didn't show.

    The Australorp is actually a group of Orpingtons that were taken to Australia and bred for their needs in that area, so the Austral--Lorp (Australian Orpington) was born.

    We can breed for our own needs, hearty to winter, hearty in summer etc. Heck , just look at the Cornish-Rock cross hybrids. They are bizzarre birds that will DIE if they aren't harvested by 10-12 weeks of age. They do nothing but sit and eat for 8-10 weeks and grow at such an amazing rate that their bodies break down and wear out. They could never continue on the planet without human intervention.

    Heck, people. Years ago there was no air conditioning, yet people still lived in the Bayou of New Orleans, the deep South, the South Western states. People learned to build based on the needs of the area. Now we all can't survive without Air Conditioning and if there is an electrical failure a LOT of people who are sensitive to the heat will die.

    I have had chickens in negative digits in the winter, 3 feet of snow, and 100 degree heat. My birds seem to do better in cold than heat. I built the coop next to pine trees and they hang out under the trees in the heat, and they still hang out under the trees in the cold. It's the wind they really don't like. The wind knocks their insulated heat out of their feathers and its harder to stay warm. If you add heat in the winter then you are setting them up for issues. If you have a long term electrical outage and they aren't used to the cold they will be stressed and may even die. Don't build too tight of a coop, you still need ventilation, but no wind in the winter. You don't want a build up of moisture from a tight coop in the cold or they can have frozen combs etc. The moisture comes from them breathing, and it will build up and condensate on the inside of the coop. Then that moisture will freeze.
  8. Energyvet

    Energyvet New Member

    Thanks Roslyn. Once again good sound advice - what used to be common sense. We've list that too. :-/