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Chicken Math

Colonel’s Blog, Earthdate 6 February 2024…

Hey Y’all!

Good evening and happy Tuesday from Air2Ground Farms! The beautiful weather continues! It’s forecast to stay very nice for the next few days, low 30s in the mornings and upper 50s during the days. Today's highlight is that we integrated the chicken flocks. The pics today are the pullets mingling with the older hens and roosters. If you look closely, you can also see the 2 guineas that remain on the farm. We decided the pullets were big enough to stay inside the poultry nets and could be released from their pen. Their pen was right next to the other chickens. We put a new net up, and connected it to the net the chickens were in, which was around our garden. We then lifted the pen over the pullets and their chick-shaw and over the net. With that, the pullets and the rest of the birds were integrated. There is merit to the phrase “pecking order.” We integrated them two days ago and they are still establishing their pecking order. Currently, the hens are chasing the pullets, not all the time, but enough to remind them of their place. The pullets are ganging up on the goose and today there were a dozen pullets after the goose. The goose, being the more intelligent of the birds in the flock, has figured out if it pretends to be dead the pullets lose interest. There is a flurry of feathers as the pullets chase the goose until suddenly the goose drops to the ground, neck and face on the dirt, motionless. The pullets immediately stop and stare, trying to figure out what happened. They don’t peck at the goose, just stare at it. One-by-one, they lose interest and wander off to do chicken things. After a few seconds, the goose stands up, fluffs her feathers, and waddles off. This evening, the goose was chasing 2 pullets! The roosters are watching, mostly uninterested. Within a few more days, the order will be established and calm will return to the now integrated flock.

Continuing the theme of chickens, we planned out the beef chickens for the season. That may seem like an easy task but it is fairly involved. We first had to decide what breed of bird we want to raise. We decided on a different breed than last year because they grow faster, have a better feed conversion, and the taste is at least as good if not better. We want to increase production over last year because we were constantly sold out and had to turn customers away. So, how do we plan the flow of birds through the farm? We decided on a flow of 50 birds every two weeks for 11 batches, giving us a total of 550 birds for the 2024 season. I built a spreadsheet with the dates the birds were ordered, the calendar dates the chicks will arrive, their location throughout their entire time on the farm, and their processing date. The next step was to order the birds, one batch at a time. All birds now ordered and their flow mapped out, our next steps are to build new brooders, one new chicken tractor, and a processing facility. Chicken math!

During yesterday’s Dust’er Mud podcast, we discussed our recent bloodwork results after 5 years of low-carb/ketogenic lifestyle. Check it out!

I’m building an Amazon Store with some of our favorite stuff. It’s still a work in progress but I’m interested to hear any feedback you might have about things we could add. Please check it out and let us know!


Psycho & Shelley

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07 feb

Interested to know how you will build the brooder. Specifically with the cold how big and how long to keep 50 chicks and then move these same 50 chick(ens) to the tractor and timing for each!

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