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  1. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Latindancer View Post
    It appears there's digital information coded on that snake, and I think it says : "if this bugger bites you, you will have between 5 and 30 minutes to live".


    Just got the name (The radiated ratsnake, copperhead rat snake) after saving the photo, and looked it up. Non-venomous, but : "These snakes are generally very defensive. They are very confident in their ability to defend themselves so you must be very confident in order to remotely have a chance at controlling this species. They are also a good trainer snakes for those looking to get into cobras and other elapids".
    COPPERHEAD RACER normally grow to 2-3mtrs.long non venomous but will bite if cornered,very fast,we were told they are PROTECTED therefo don't kill them.we had one outside our gate that sat there listening to our dog talking to it.

  2. #27
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    Mendip
    I thought I would post here and resurrect this thread rather than pollute your lockdown commute thread with my waffle.

    Anyway yesterday I visited the "cute" dentist again and while in Korat I finally bought 6 hens. So you can tell your daughter that 6 more have been spared from a life in a battery shed. I am not sure I bought them from the same place you do as there are 2 adjacent shops selling them and I got the ones I thought looked the best, as in a bit younger.

    Here's a few pictures to look at.

    This is the pen I made for them it is backed onto the rice barn and was previously used by the MIL for her chickens.
    My Splendid Cock-chk-1-jpg


    Here they are along with the new cock I put in with them, he is only young so we'll see what happens regarding fertilised eggs being the result. Might have a few failures early on.
    I also put one of the MIL's hens in with him to try and teach the stupid warren hens what it means to be a chicken, only did that this morning.
    Last night the Warrens were on their own and had no idea so I had to wait until dark then go and pick them up and lift them up onto the perch. This morning when I went to check they were still there. They obviously didn't know how to get down.
    My Splendid Cock-chk-2-jpg


    This shows the perches (top left) and the nesting "boxes" (middle right).
    My Splendid Cock-chk-3-jpg


    here's a closer view of the "nests", one can only hope they get used.
    My Splendid Cock-chk-4-jpg


    Here's the stairway to the perches, hopefully its not too steep. The plank I used is not as wide as the one you used.
    My Splendid Cock-chk-5-jpg


    This is a picture of my young cock's father the boss of the yard. If he sees another rooster he is after him in a flash.
    My Splendid Cock-chk-6-jpg


    He ain't small either, I reckon I should get him into the fight business.
    My Splendid Cock-chk-7-jpg


    These are the raising pens where I will hopefully be rearing all the crossbred chickens.
    My Splendid Cock-chk-8-jpg


    This is a batch that is currently being raised. Normally we don't have this many in one pen but all the pens were full when they arrived. I tried separating a batch of chickens once and all they did was try and get back together so I have left these alone. Too many and they peck the feathers out of each other.
    My Splendid Cock-chk-9-jpg


    Cheers

  3. #28
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    Great stuff ootai... you'll be amazed at how quickly the warren hens get used to having a life and all their natural instincts will come back fast, once allowed.

    The 'chicken ramp' is essential to prevent bumblefoot for these warren hens, as I mentioned. It won't be long until they're going up and down of their own accord. I posted about it somewhere else on this forum but I can't find it... I'll look again and bring it in here.

    You may find that once they start laying, they will all try and sit on top of each other in the mornings... they always seem to want to lay in the same nest. I would maybe try a few of the big clay plant pots, but on their sides? They like a roof and a bit of privacy to do their stuff.

    I forgot to mention, but for these hens you really need some of the proper egg-layers feed. Life is hard for a warren hen once they start laying and they need protein and grit. The protein is to replace all the nutrients they lose to the eggs... and they should be laying 5 or 6 a week once they get going. Any unlucky geko or frog that gets into our chicken run gets eaten immediately... I've even watched a mouse get caught and eaten, and one of those horrible big centipedes.

    Any food waste that doesn't go to dogs goes to our chickens... steamed fish carcasses are particularly speedily eaten... as are shrimp shells, etc etc, and of course any fruit peelings. I used to pay my daughter to collect snails from around the garden... 1 Baht a snail... and they all went to the chickens, so two 'birds' with one stone! She demands too much money these days so now I do it meself. When we get those huge fly hatches in the wet season I empty out the pool skimmer box in the morning, wash all the flies in fresh water and tip them into the chicken run. They love all that kind of stuff.

    Also, they need calcium carbonate to replace all that lost to the egg shells. The chicken food has grit added, but what I also do is keep all of our egg shells and grind them up and add the powder to the food. Without that we used to get a lot of soft shelled eggs.

    Good luck!
    Last edited by Mendip; 10-10-2020 at 12:53 PM.

  4. #29
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    I found it! It was in an old thread started by Tomcat about great inventions!

    Quote Originally Posted by Mendip View Post
    Rats are fascinating creatures with a highly organised social structure. They are probably the most successful mammal there is (after humans) which is why they are so persecuted. They have this 'diseased' reputation, and in many cases rightly so, but all they're doing is taking advantage of the habitats we have created for them. They have such efficient digestive systems that they can get nutrients out of our faeces. They are brave little buggers as well. When I used to go ferreting as a youngster, occasionally we'd come across a rat in a rabbit warren. A female rat with young will take on any ferret, and often come off best with the ferret badly bitten and heading to the vet's for some antibiotics.

    Anyway, I resisted posting on this thread for fear of someone stealing my idea, but in the interests of animal welfare have decided to share.

    For some time our chickens were suffering from bumblefoot. This is an affliction caused by the chickens constantly landing hard on the ground with a heavy impact when flying/falling down from their night time roost in the morning. The red egg laying hens are particularly prone to this as they're not very aerodynamic and tend to hit the floor with a crash. Bumblefoot is this strange white growth inside the chicken's feet that is very painful and stops the chickens walking about. Eventually the foot will swell right up making the chicken's life a misery.

    The books say to add sand to the ground to soften it to reduce the chicken's impact, and to keep the perches no higher than 18 inches from the ground. Neither of which are practical as any sand will soon get scratched away and a chicken will roost in the highest place possible and will just ignore some stupid perch at knee height.

    So, in my light bulb moment I invented the 'chicken ramp'. In the six years since my invention we haven't had a single case of bumblefoot.






  5. #30
    Thailand Expat tomcat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mendip View Post
    I found it! It was in an old thread started by Tomcat about great inventions!
    ...would you post a link to this thread, please?...

  6. #31
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  7. #32
    Thailand Expat tomcat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mendip View Post
    No problem!
    ...thanks!...

  8. #33
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    I thought I would provide an update on my hens.
    I have now had them 3 weeks and it has been interesting as I am learning that chickens are dumb. They couldn't or wouldn't go up my "ladder" to perch on the higher perches I put in. Instead they decided it was better to just stay on the ground and huddle together. I suppose it doesn't really matter to them as they don't need to get away from predators these days but I didn't want them sleeping on the ground in amongst their crap. If they sleep on the high perches I could easily clean up their crap underneath.

    Anyway I set about making some changes to their "house".

    My Splendid Cock-chk_10-jpg

    As you can see ( if you look back at the previous pictures) I have lowered their perches by nearly a metre. This meant the ramp/ladder was no longer as steep.
    The stupid twats still wouldn't climb up there.
    So I started going out each night and picking them up and placing them on the perches. The Thai rooster and hen were straight up there but the warren's didn't understand what the rooster was saying when he was calling them up.
    After I placed them up there I would go back an hour or so later to check that they were still there and they were as they obviously don't want to move in the dark.
    So each morning each morning I would check to see if they made it down. A couple of times they hadn't so I "encouraged" them to "walk the plank" to get down.
    One morning I got up earlier than normal and went to watch how they got down and they were learning they walked down the ramp, yahoo!

    On Wednesday evening when I went to check all but 1 had made it up so I placed her at the bottom of the ramp and made her climb up.
    Next night I went out at dusk and lo and behold they had all climbed up, finally some success. Again on Friday they were all up so I think they have finally learned so only took about 9 days to teach them, they are after all bred originally from English chickens so I shouldn't expect too much, sorry Mendip.

    My Splendid Cock-chk_11-jpg

    Same but from a different angle.

    My Splendid Cock-chk_12-jpg

    This shows that I have taken away the shade cloth I had covering this end as I thought it was a bit dark, Also shows the new next boxes I made although they aren't laying eggs yet.
    I suppose they will start laying on the ground and I will need to teach them what the boxes are for, stupid pricks.

    My Splendid Cock-chk_13-jpg

    Here you can see how they now get up there to look out at the "view" from higher up and I thought the 1 on the ground was "nesting" and gonna lay an egg but that didn't happen unfortunately.


    My Splendid Cock-chk_14-jpg

    So today they were let out of their enclosure to run free. It has been 3 weeks so hopefully they will "return" to their home.

    My Splendid Cock-chk_15-jpg

    They liked laying in the sun.

    The only problem so far has been the Thai rooster. He must have gotten too close to his Dad (see previous pictures in earlier post) and the old boy beat him up.
    First time I have witnessed a "cock" fight and I can understand why the Thai guys like it. The roosters really go at it. Anyway the young rooster eventually ran away and tried to hide his head in a patch of grass but the old boy just kept pecking at his back until I stepped in to make him leave the young fella alone.

    I am hoping when I go out to check then later I still have a young rooster and that they all return safely to their bed.

  9. #34
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    That's really strange as any new warren hen additions I get are up roosting with the others within days. You must have got a stupid batch.

    Robin Hood (our cockerel) calls them up every night and they soon get the hang of it.

    Yours must also be young if they're not laying eggs yet... but that will happen very soon.

    By the way, did you know that chickens do 70% of their business while asleep, much like the Scots.

    Every evening I lay down a few catering trays underneath the perches to catch all the droppings. This makes keeping the chicken run clean much easier, and every morning I just scrape droppings from the trays into the compost bin.

    Well, not me at the moment... this is another of the gardener's duties while I'm away!

  10. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mendip View Post
    That's really strange as any new warren hen additions I get are up roosting with the others within days. You must have got a stupid batch.
    I don't think they are any more stupid than any other chickens. In my case they had no one to learn from. The rooster and his Thai lady just flew up onto the perches which I don't think the Warren's were able to do. Having said that I seen one actually fly up onto the landing (near the nest boxes) yesterday.

    I just went out to check on them and they had all returned home to their enclosure so I am a happy chappy at the moment all I need to make it a great day is for them to lay some eggs.

    Speaking of eggs I bought myself an incubator in anticipation of hatching some crossbred chickens and to try it out I got MIL to save me 24 eggs.
    So she come to me and said I have 24 for you so I stuck them into the incubator and thought OK 21 days and I will have some chickens.

    MIL must have stole some of the eggs from under a brooding hen as 7 days in I had 10 hatch. Two of them had splayed legs, I am not sure what it was caused by but am thinking it might be that there was not much room in the incubator and they had to straddle the other eggs or the roller bar and it caused the problem. Anyway they have been despatched to Buddha as the last ones I had never ever recovered and eventually died anyway.

  11. #36
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    I find that the warren hen chicks hatch in 19 to 20 days, and the wild hen chicks (from smaller eggs) hatch in 18 days. This is from when I put the fertile eggs under broody wild hens and I've never used an incubator.

    I don't know why they hatch before the standard 21 days but these times are very regular. Maybe it's the heat and humidity of Isaan? Now I write the date on the eggs when I put them under the broody hens and can predict the hatch to the day.

    Watch out a few days before the chicks are due to hatch... we often get a snake take residence in the chicken run ready to eat the clutch of chicks. It seems that snakes can smell when eggs are due to hatch and get ready for the bounty... we've lost a few clutches to rat snakes.

    Sometimes chicks seem to have trouble hatching out of their eggs and I'll help them out by breaking the membrane inside the shell with a cocktail stick. I've read on the internet though that when you have to help chicks hatch they often end up with splayed legs... maybe this is associated somehow?

  12. #37
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    Might want to add a few ducks and geese to your already oversized circle of fowl, Mendy...

    Keeps things lively.
    Just saying like.

  13. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mendip View Post
    I find that the warren hen chicks hatch in 19 to 20 days, and the wild hen chicks (from smaller eggs) hatch in 18 days. This is from when I put the fertile eggs under broody wild hens and I've never used an incubator.

    I don't know why they hatch before the standard 21 days but these times are very regular. Maybe it's the heat and humidity of Isaan? Now I write the date on the eggs when I put them under the broody hens and can predict the hatch to the day.

    Watch out a few days before the chicks are due to hatch... we often get a snake take residence in the chicken run ready to eat the clutch of chicks. It seems that snakes can smell when eggs are due to hatch and get ready for the bounty... we've lost a few clutches to rat snakes.

    Sometimes chicks seem to have trouble hatching out of their eggs and I'll help them out by breaking the membrane inside the shell with a cocktail stick. I've read on the internet though that when you have to help chicks hatch they often end up with splayed legs... maybe this is associated somehow?

    Mendip
    19 to 21 days before hatching I would have been unconcerned but 7 days was way to quick for there not to be some other reason.
    I don't think it was the heat and humidity of Isaan either as it has been relatively cold here recently.
    As for snakes, shouldn't be a problem as I will not be hatching chicks in the chook pen but instead in the Incubator.
    You may be right about helping them hatch causing the splayed legs as the 2 that had the problem were ones that arrived first and they were given some help by our Thai friend who I was showing the incubator to.
    I also read about not helping them hatch and leaving them be for the first 24hrs.

    My plan is that with 6 warren hens laying regularly i should be able to collect enough (24) eggs in 5-6 days to fill the incubator so they all should hatch about the same time 19-21 days after I put them in.



    Quote Originally Posted by Huang Lao
    Might want to add a few ducks and geese to your already oversized circle of fowl, Mendy...

    Keeps things lively.
    Just saying like.
    Huang Lao
    I would like to have ducks and Geese but my Missus won't have a pond anywhere near us as she's worried about kids drowning in it.

  14. #39
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    Ootai, when we get a broody hen I wait until I've enough eggs and then put them under the hen at the same time. If I was you I'd keep the eggs out of the incubator and put a batch in at a time. So long as they're not warm enough they won't start developing outside of the incubator.

    I have had eggs start developing when they were left out in the kitchen during the hot season... fine if you're a filipino but not good for most people. We keep our eggs in the fridge now... and incidentally, I've taken eggs out of the fridge, stuck them under a broody hen, and they've still hatched!

    Sounds like your Thai friend may have caused the splay legs. I leave the chicks alone unless it's been a day or so and they can't seem to get out. The mum's will help a bit as well.

    I would also love some ducks... we have the pond and they'd love it, but they wouldn't last two minutes with our dogs. It's not the dogs' fault, they've just never been trained. We keep our hens in a secure run, but ducks love water and it would just make too much mess to keep them in a confined space.

  15. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mendip View Post
    Ootai, when we get a broody hen I wait until I've enough eggs and then put them under the hen at the same time. If I was you I'd keep the eggs out of the incubator and put a batch in at a time. So long as they're not warm enough they won't start developing outside of the incubator.

    I have had eggs start developing when they were left out in the kitchen during the hot season... fine if you're a filipino but not good for most people. We keep our eggs in the fridge now... and incidentally, I've taken eggs out of the fridge, stuck them under a broody hen, and they've still hatched!

    Mendip
    I didn't make myself absolutely clear but, what I meant is that I would be able to collect enough eggs over 5-6 days AND THEN I would put them all in the incubator at the same time just as you have said.
    As for keeping eggs in the fridge, the internet says that you shouldn't do that but then maybe those people don't live in an oven that Thailand is sometimes.
    I also read that you shouldn't clean the eggs after you collect them and before you put them into the incubator.
    As with most things I will have to learn as I go with the assistance of Google.

  16. #41
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    Here ya go Ootai... you've motivated me to show some interest in this thread again.

    And I've got a lot of spare time in the evenings just now...

    This is what I put under the chicken's perches every evening. A mixture of catering trays and plastic panels. When I say 'I', I mean the gardener. If he goes away I have to get some advice from him because he knows whereabouts the chickens are roosting.



    And in the morning... there's the 70% of their droppings... all done through the night while they sleep.



    Even with these measures, a couple of times a year I dig out the top couple of inches of soil and replace it with fresh top soil. I get a truck load every now and again to freshen it up... the ground soon gets dead and smelly due to the chicken droppings.

    And when I say 'I'...

    And all the dropping go into the compost bin every morning.



    The chicken wire around the compost bin is to stop the dogs eating chicken shit. They love the stuff and it doesn't matter how well they get fed, they love to eat rotten chicken shit. It puts me off giving Dan a little kiss on the nose some mornings.

  17. #42
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    Cool, we used to raise Rhodesian Reds, Barred Rock and a few other breeds of chickens years ago. As well as Peking ducks. They all free ranged and we locked them in their pens at night to keep the fox, coyotes and raccoons away from them. I do recall several instances where a hawk would fly over and lickety split they were back in their pens.
    Last edited by fishlocker; 01-11-2020 at 01:29 AM.

  18. #43
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    The pens are there but the birds have flew the coop. Miss fish has no qualms about whacking their heads off and plucking them. It was like an assembly line come picken time. Yea, wait till dark when their on their roost, tie the feet and set them in the wagon for transport up to the garage where we had a camp stove with a tub of hot water and miss fish's knives.

    I do recall dunking a bird that wasn't quite ready, talk about a flapper. From then on I expect the unexpected.

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    I am happy today I actually seen my young rooster scruffing one of the hens so there is some hope that when they start laying I have might get fertile eggs and would mean chicks.
    I wasn't sure if he was up to the task.

  20. #45
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    ^ Well congrats Ootai, it's always nice to know your cock's performing ok.

    Just to go back on what we were discussing above, I reckon that with using incubators you'll be helping some chicks out of their shells. You'll have to replace the mums.

    I posted these elsewhere before, but it's good to get everything in the same thread.

    It starts like this...



    But after a day if it's still like this I step in to help out.



    Usually, once they start to hatch it happens very quickly.

    What I have found is that the membrane inside the shell often seems to be the problem. I break it with a cocktail stick and peel a bit away, maybe pick away at the shell a bit also, then let nature take it's course.



    And here's a proud mum with a bedraggled new born chick.



    And another!







    Incidentally, the '14' written on the eggs was for the 14th June, and I took the egg hatching photos on 3td July. So that was only 17 days to the start of hatching.

    And this was the one we helped out!


  21. #46
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    Aww, how cute. Nice pic thread btw. If given the time I may find some old pics of Peking ducks. On a brighter tone I have a young gal in Laos raising chicken and ducks. Heck I may get a decent dinner out of it on the next go round.
    PEACE out, the fishes.

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    Yeah, add some pics. I'm gonna run out of material until I get back home...

  23. #48
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    Fantastic pics Mendip.

    A question, how do you sex the hens from the cocks?

    Only asking because i bought 4 supposedly egg laying chickens a few years back.

    I converted my Thai beach bungalow into a smart 5 star chicken coup,

    They were fed very well and given names.

    The eldest even had a chicken birthday party.

    It was great until 6 months later when they were part of the family that the problems started.

    Infernal noises 24 hours a day, vicious fights in the coup.

    Unfortunately they all turned out to be Cocks and the neighbours started complaining and the RSPCA were called to investigate.

    Long story short, they were dispatched to the pot.

    Sad story.

    RIP Goldie

  24. #49
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    Yeah, that is sad.

    I've stopped naming mine as we've got about 40 and all the red hens look the same. It got too confusing and I gave up when we were on our fifth 'Deang'...

    It's hard to tell the sex until about 5 months, and then the boys start to develop cones and become more colourful. I'm too soft to kill them for the pot so all the young cocks go to the local temple to run free with the flock. At least that's what the monks tell me, but I reckon as soon as I drive away they end up in the monk's pot to go with all the rice they cadge every morning.

    At the breeding farms the chicks are sexed at a day old... the girls go to be reared for battery egg laying, the boys get sucked into a grinder for pet food. Now that is sad.

  25. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chittychangchang View Post
    i bought 4 supposedly egg laying chickens a few years back.

    I converted my Thai beach bungalow into a smart 5 star chicken coup,

    They were fed very well and given names.

    The eldest even had a chicken birthday party.

    It was great until 6 months later when they were part of the family that the problems started.

    Infernal noises 24 hours a day, vicious fights in the coup.

    Unfortunately they all turned out to be Cocks and the neighbours started complaining and the RSPCA were called to investigate.

    A splendid cock tale

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