Rainbow Ranch Farms

  (Pinon Hills, California)
Organic, free-range, pastured, grass-fed/finished, heritage-breeds,
[ Member listing ]

Farm Pick-Up Today! Sat. Feb. 5th

Today marks another pick-up day at the farm. Open to registered farm members.

Please bring your large coolers, try to carpool and wear flat shoes.

Please, drive up and open and close the gate  behind you, we have livestock running free.

The second gate has a walk through gate next to it. We are happy to use the dolly to transport your boxes to your car.

Extras will be available, eggs are "you pick", Brenda will be here with her goodies and some members will be providing their farm goods to our farm members today!.

We will have a member volunteer sheet at pick-up, if you are interested in volunteering on one of the farms, please sign up.

It is now 5:00am, I will not be available by phone, until after 12 noon!


Growing Your Own Chickens For Meat

Growing Your Own Chickens For Meat

By Katie Pepper Morgan

The decision to raise your own chickens for their meat is one that many more people are making. By raising your own meat you will control what your chickens eat. If you are choosing to feed your family only free range chickens, then you can insure your chickens are free range.

COST OF RAISING CHICKENS FOR MEAT: You will be surprised to learn you probably won't save much money growing your own chickens for meat unless you plan on raising a large number of chickens and filling up your freezer.

ARE ALL CHICKEN MEATS THE SAME?: Meat you raise yourself may not taste exactly like the chicken you buy at your local grocery store. Most people think the fresh meat you raise yourself actually tastes better, while other people think the taste takes some getting used to. Some people can not tell the difference between the store bought chicken and home grown chicken meat.

HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE?: How long it'll take to raise chicks to butcher depends on what type of chicks you choose to purchase. You can purchase fast growing chicks from online hatcheries which will be ready to butcher in about 15-16 weeks or so. This is a very fast turn around time. If you choose to raise a standard breed like New Hampshire's or Rhode Island Reds then it may take a little longer until they are ready to be butchered.

If you are concerned about the treatment chickens may be in commercial farms while they are being raised for meat then you may wish to raise your own chicks for meat. This isn't a decision for everyone. Butchering can be hard, especially if you form a close bond to the chickens. If you are unsure if you will be able to handle the butchering, then you can probably hire someone to do it for you.

Check out Katie's newest website Easy Chicken Coop Designs dot com. Tips for designing or picking out a Small Chicken Coop Plans. Please stop by and check it out!

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Katie_Pepper_Morgan

Please click on the link for the original article http://ezinearticles.com/?Growing-Your-Own-Chickens-For-Meat&id=4084810



Grow Your Own Eggs

Grow Your Own Eggs

For your own taste of the good life, keep a few chickens in your garden. You'll be surprised at how easy it is, and once you’re enjoying your own 'homegrown' fresh eggs, you'll wonder why you didn't do it sooner.

Chickens have so many benefits. There are the obvious eggs, but chickens offer so much more. Believe it or not, chickens make great pets (when I was younger, my chickens, which I'd had since they were chicks, would hop up on my shoulder, so friendly were they). They can be really social creatures, and can bring your garden to life, as they strut around, pecking and clucking.

And while they're pecking around, chickens are fantastic for the organic gardener. Your chickens will make short work of all those pesky bugs and pests in your garden. And if you go round your garden at night with a torch and pick off all the slugs, snails and caterpillars, your chickens will love you forever when they get a tasty breakfast!

And there's more good news for the organic gardener, chicken manure is fantastic for your plants. Just remember that, like horse manure, it needs to be matured first, or it will burn your plants, especially young tender ones. The best thing to do is to spread the chicken manure out over your soil, leaving it to dry, before turning it in, or add it to your compost heap.

If you have children, they will love these pets, and enjoy collecting the eggs in the morning, and helping to feed them. The whole egg laying, chick hatching experience (if you decide to do this) can also be very educational.

So, there are plenty of good reasons to keep chickens, but where will you put them? There are a few things to bear in mind when choosing a hen house **
http://www.easydiychickencoop.com**. First, how many chickens do you want? For a family of four, five or six hens should be enough to keep you well supplied: if there's just the two of you, 3 or 4 may do. There's no need to have a cockerel unless you plan to breed from your hens, and if you have close neighbors, they may not appreciate his crowing at 4am in the summer!

Each chicken should have about a square foot of space for roosting, so just multiply that by the number of chickens you want to work out what size of house to go for. The chicken house should be neither too small (which will lead to an increase in diseases) nor too large (which could lead to the birds, particularly small ones such as bantams, getting too cold).

The hen house should also be well-ventilated. Not only does it make the chicken coop more pleasant for the birds, but also a lack of ventilation and high humidity can lead to respiratory diseases.

Check out the size of the nesting boxes, too. Each bird needs to be able to stand up to lay her eggs, and have room to run around. It’s also best to have fewer, bigger boxes, rather than lots of smaller ones.

The style of house will depend on your personal taste and the size of your garden. You may want a house that can be moved around, so that the ground underneath can recover, or be planning to leave the house on spot. Depending on how secure your garden is, you can allow your chickens free range, or have a run or attached compound for them to scratch around in.

Remember that bigger birds will need something more than a triangular run, as they can really only stand up properly along its highest central part. If you have any concerns about foxes, make sure your house is very secure and you may want to place it within a secure compound. Obviously, if your chickens are kept on an allotment, security will be a particular issue.

If you're planning on keeping chickens for a good long while, it's worth investing in a good-quality shed for them. Plywood may be cheap, and is light, but it won't last for long. Featheredge wood looks nice but can warp easily and can be pulled off by badgers! Shiplap or tongue and grooves are good options to go for.

Remember that the hen house will need cleaning, so a good-sized door to allow you access to do this is vital.

And if you're opting for a second-hand house, be sure to treat well to kill any red mite before you use it.

Talking of which, one thing all chicken keepers will tell you to steer clear of is roofing felt, which is just like heaven on earth for red mites!

So, with your hen house, run, and chickens you're all set to enjoy your very first, home-grown, fresh eggs. With their deep yellow yolks and full flavour, once you've collected, cooked and eaten a really fresh egg all within the hour, you'll never resort to supermarket eggs again!

For the original article, please click on the link




What’s Different about Heritage Breeds?

What’s Different about Heritage Breeds? 


The American Livestock Breeds Conservancy states that heritage chicken breeds must be an American Poultry Association (APA) standard breed. The chickens also must be allowed to mate naturally, lead a long, productive outdoor life, and maintain a slow growth rate. It takes heritage chicken breeds at least 16 weeks to reach market weight.  


http://www.motherearthnews.com/blogs/blog.aspx?blogid=1508&tag=chicken Original LINK


Heritage Chicken Breeds’ Various Values

Heritage Chicken Breeds’ Various Values


Monday, September 20, 2010 11:00 AM


By Abbie Stutzer


Tags: heritage breeds, chicken, raising chickens


Yum, yum … and more yum. The wonderful aroma and succulent taste of grilled, fried, baked (the list goes on) chicken. Although almost no one can resist fresh fried chicken, some diners might think twice before placing that standard pack of chicken in their shopping basket at the grocery store.  


A discerning buyer may think:  


“Where did this chicken come from?”  


“Is this chicken free-range?”  


“What’s the real nutritional value of this chicken?” 


“I wonder if this chicken was raised locally …”  


If only these concerned consumers knew they could purchase (or raise) a chicken that had noteworthy nutritional value. The nutritious chicken breeds I’m referring to are heritage breeds. Meat from heritage chicken breeds is nutrient rich and has myriad other natural benefits. 


With a bit of research, reading and planning, conscientious chicken connoisseurs can easily purchase fresh heritage chicken meat, or raise heritage chicken breeds in their own backyards.  

By Abbie Stutzer



Chickens For Meat? - Cost/Breed/Feed?

Chickens For Meat? - Cost/Breed/Feed?


Chickens For Meat? - Cost/Breed/Feed?


For the full article please click on the link below


by Ireland-or-bust » Thu May 22, 2008 10:02 am


Hi all,

I'm hoping to get my chicken meat from my own supply.

Now, here are the questions...

1. I have Light Sussex and Dorkings, Are they fast enough growers?
They are certainly fat enough...

2. How long will a L.S. take to get to an eating weight?

3. How much food will it take to get it there?

I would like to get broilers, but they have to be bought and that to me is not sustainable at all.

I have all the gear/space etc i just need a bit of info from someone who has DONE IT already. I have an 80 egg incubator and barn space for 3 times that in hens.

I am getting a horrible feeling that the feed is going to cost more than the chicken in the super market. It doesn't matter that it's nicer.
The electric company doesn't accept niceness cheques.






Winter at Rainbow Ranch Farms: Photo Album

The snow is about 2 feet deep, some of the chickens and turkeys came out to snow play, others chose to stay in their cozy coops.  If you can not see the photos, click on the link to open it.









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