Hot Chooks

The last two days have risen up into the 90’s here.  Hot summer days. 

For me the weather is lovely, for the animals and birds hot weather is a trial. The cows headed for the back paddock and lay into the long grass down there to get away from the heat and the flies but the meat chickens were marooned out in the field in their chicken tractor. They are a good weight now too eating all the clover and milk and boiled eggs.  These ones have been ordered for some big lunches on the Fourth of July.  (One of those lunches is here). They are due for their last truck ride on Thursday.

I had fans going on them for a few days but yesterday this was not cutting it.  A few of them were showing signs of imminent heat stress. That will kill these fast growing meat birds fast. So I dragged the sprinkler over from the other garden and anchored it above the chicken tractor with one of my home made sand bags and turned on the water.

The effect was almost immediate. Their heads came up, they began to breath easier and off they waddled to their water and feed. All better.

Luckily the rest of the week will be cooler – we don’t want a repeat of that near miss. Last year I had four chickens die, right beside their water, due to the heat. And their house was under a tree.

This is the heaviest and healthiest group of birds I have grown to date.

I have another batch of chicks to be delivered in a few weeks and that chicken tractor is on its last legs – it is due to be dismantled and remade with a new frame- a job I will have to do by myself because from next week I have a three week gap between workers.

The mid summer batch of chickens are grown to a smaller weight and live under the trees.

Time for work.  I hope you have a lovely day.

Love celi

Weather: Hot with the possibility of a sprinkle of rain – nice for the gardens, not so good for fat chooks.

Sunday 06/04 40% / 0.16 inPartly cloudy with afternoon showers or thunderstorms. High 89F. Winds WSW at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 40%.

Sunday Night 06/04 20% / 0 inCloudy early, becoming mostly clear after midnight. A stray shower or thunderstorm is possible. Low 61F. Winds W at 5 to 10 mph.

17 Comments on “Hot Chooks

  1. What a good idea! Good job you are a good farmer and know your animals. That is very hot. Keep cool. 😀

  2. this batch of meat chooks are better looking too! Enjoy your summer days. Laura

  3. Your extremes are amazing. I feel like I was just reading about freezing temperatures not too long ago. Up and down. Down and Up.

  4. I use the mallards out on the dock to gauge how bad the heat is. When the ducks start sitting in the shade with their beaks open, panting, I know I need to be very careful myself!

  5. Although it wouldn’t work with a tractor, I had a passionfruit vine growing over my chook house. In winter, the leaves dropped off and let in the sun, and in the summer there was lush thick greenery to keep the sun off the Girls. I gave them a big shallow pan with water in it too, and they did actually take water baths. I’m so glad you’ve brought them back from the brink, especially so late in the day. It would be a disaster to have them drop off the perch now, so close to their delivery date.

  6. Boiled eggs for the chickens too? Ours do get goat milk as well, but I haven’t given them boiled eggs yet. The pigs do get eggs though. Do you peel them and chop them up for the chickens? We need to order out meat chickens soon. Baby ducks have left the brooder and right now we have 13 baby guineas in there. The guineas are noisy, alright, but great for eating ticks and chiggers, which we have plenty of around here! 😦

  7. I think you have had more heat up there than we have had down here in Oklahoma! My family in Nebraska has had temps much warmer than we have had – though we are enjoying plentiful rain right now. We feed boiled eggs occasionally too. They gobble them up in no time flat! We have a lot of nice shade trees around the chicken barn so whether they are in the large chicken pen or roaming free there is always plenty of cover for them. I hope to build a chicken tractor one of these days… so many things on the “to do” list!

  8. So exciting! I think I know who one of those lunches is for! ❤️😉I haven’t had fresh chicken since I was 18, visiting relatives just outside of Budapest! I’m super stoked about seeing you, the farmy and the characters!

  9. Thanks to you I have learned a lot about keeping chooks. Our new share-chooks are layers, they are now let out later afternoons to roam but during the day I forage a basket of leafy greens for them, they get kitchen scraps from 3 households including a batch of yoghurt I made that didn’t set which they loved, leftover dog-cat-rabbit food… Their chookyard is under a big deciduous tree but in summer I’ll make sure they have ways of keeping cool on very hot days.

  10. It was warm and humid here yesterday, today just warm, mid 80’s. Percy was lounging in his kiddy pool and I gave him a nice shower with the hose. He loved it (oh no, he’s not spoiled). Fortunately all the animal areas have abundant shade and there’s usually a spot to catch a breeze.

  11. You need Kim back up here. She has chicken tractor building experience! 😉

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