The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

End of Summer observations

brand new baby chickens near a lap top computer

Before I became a homesteader I would usually observe the end of Summer being when young people would go back to school....often thinking "better you than me!" with great relief that I have already completed my State required dose of compulsory education.

These days Anna and I have our very own end of Summer ritual....the hatching of the year's last batch of incubated chicks.

They started showing up yesterday...and now we have an excited baker's dozen.

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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I guess the end of summer ritual for my kids is a last playdate with their "school playmates" because once the friends are in school, we don't see them much until the next summer. My kids don't even realize how lucky they are not to have to head back to "regular" school.

Anyway, we only have space to hatch one batch each year and I have never decided what time of year is best. Why do you hatch out a batch so late in the summer and have you found this to be the best time?

Comment by Karyn Sun Aug 11 13:40:57 2013
Karyn --- Excellent question. We raise three sets of chickens per year because the incubator only fits 20 eggs, they usually don't all hatch, and we want enough chickens to feed us all year, which takes multiple batches. This is probably my favorite batch of the year, though, because it's easiest. Warm weather when the chicks come out means I don't have to baby them, there's scads of excess garden produce to treat them with as they grow, and then we get to butcher them in cool weather. It won't work for raising layers, though, because you need them to have four or five months of life under their belt before the equinox.
Comment by anna Sun Aug 11 17:45:13 2013

Hey!! we just received out 25 heritage breed chickens last week. We never processed meat chickens before. So a first for us. Interesting we signed up to go to the Mother Earth News Fair so we could learn the cutting up process. BUT thanks to you guys we now have a video. We ordered the chicken water and there was a video included. Imagine our great surprise when it also included the processing method. (Slaughtering)

Thanks Ana and Mark!! Oh and our chickens caught on to the new waterer in a nano second. What a good feeling to know they are drinking clean water all the time.


Comment by Donna Mon Aug 12 08:48:55 2013

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