UCP Episode 052 – Spying on Hens with Terry Golson of Hencam.com

Terry Golson of HenCam photo by Spencer Webb

Terry Golson of HenCam photo by Spencer Webb

What is really happening inside of your chicken coop?  Who is the naughty feather pulling hen?  Is there mischief occurring in your flock that you’re simply unaware of?

For the average chicken keeper, it is impossible to know the answers to these questions. Some secrets are simply unknowable in the lives of your flock.  One chicken expert and enthusiast has challenged that limitation and the private lives of her hens have been exposed for the entire world to watch.  Through an intricate surveillance camera system rigged up in her chicken coop, Terry Golson of Hencam.com is providing unlimited and unfettered access for any would-be chicken voyeurs to watch her birds as they unwittingly carry on their daily routines.

Continue reading

UCP Giveaway #8 – Avian Aqua Miser Original Waterer

Avian Aqua Miser Original - photo courtesy of Mark Hamilton

Avian Aqua Miser Original – photo courtesy of Mark Hamilton

Mark Hamilton and Anna Hess are the co-owners of Avian Aqua Miser.  This small company designs and manufactures simple to use and maintain chicken watering systems.

The Avian Aqua Miser Original is designed to hang in a coop or run and provides birds with clean water.  Unlike the typical chicken waterer that sits on the floor of the coop and inevitably ends up full of dirt, debris and poop, the Avian Aqua Miser Original is an enclosed watering system that keep your flock’s water clean from start to finish.

You can win your own Avian Aqua Miser Original through this giveaway made possible by the generous donation of Mark and Anna.  To learn more about this waterer and other Avian Aqua Miser waterers, check out the Avian Aqua Miser website HERE.

This contest will be open for entries starting August 18th and ending August 28th at 5 p.m. MST I will then draw one name at random to receive this terrific gift of an Avian Aqua Miser Original.

You can sign up to win this watering system in the sign-up box in the sidebar of the UCP webpage! (Note: you may not see this on a mobile device and will need to log on a regular computer.)

Good Luck!

UCP Giveaway #7 – Your Choice of Two Bags of Luv-Nest Nesting Herbs!

Tina Hickman, certified herbalist and backyard chicken enthusiast and owner of Luv Nest has created four aromatic and effective dried herbal blends to be used in coops and nesting boxes.  All herbs used in Luv Nest herb blends are 100% organic and absolutely safe for your flock to consume.

You can win your choice of any TWO Luv Nest herb blends.  This giveaway is made possible by the generous donation of Tina Hickman.  Thank you Tina!  To learn more about the use of herbs with your hens and the Luv Nest products, please be sure to listen to UCP Episode 051 (LISTEN HERE).

This contest will be open for entries for TWO WEEKS only starting July 29th through August 5, 2014 at 5 p.m. MST. (Contest entry period extended to August 12, 2014 at 5 p.m. MST — Apparently my date calculation skills were off the day I originally posted this contest.  Oopsies.  All fixed now so get your entries in to win!)  I will then draw one name at random to receive this terrific gift of TWO bags of your choice of Luv Nest herb blends.

You can sign up to win these LUV NEST nesting box/coop herb blends in the sign-up box in the sidebar of the UCP webpage! (Note: you may not see this on a mobile device and will need to log on a regular computer.)

Good Luck!

UCP Episode 051 – Herbs for the Hens: a Conversation with Tina Hickman of Luv Nest

Mill Dene Garden 21-09-2013

Across all continents and cultures, man has been using herbs for their medicinal and beneficial properties for thousands of years.  Even today it is estimated that 80% of the world’s population relies on herbal medicines as part of their primary health care.  Traditional Chinese medicine and Ayurveda (Hindu medicine) continues to be based on the use of herbal therapies and remedies.  The beneficial properties of herbs are not limited to humans.

Every backyard chicken owner can promote the health and happiness of their hens through the use of fresh and dried herbs.  There are numerous herbs which can repel pests, promote vitality and improve the overall well-being with your birds.  In a nutshell, you can use herbs as simple, aromatic and inexpensive tools for your flock.  When given the opportunity, chickens will freely eat herbs to get the benefits from these plants and flowers.

Certified herbalist and backyard chicken keeper Tina Hickman joins me on the Urban Chicken Podcast this week to discuss the many ways herbs can be used to benefit your hens. Continue reading

photo by:

UCP Giveaway #6 – Win a Copy of Liz Wolfe’s “Eat the Yolks” Book!

Eat the Yolks book cover

Presumably you have listened to my interview with Liz Wolfe (UCP Episode 050 – LISTEN HERE) and found her to be as charming and informative as I did –  and now you want more.  Here is your chance to win her book, “Eat the Yolks,” for your own reading pleasure and overall edification.

This contest will be open for entries for TWO WEEKS only starting July 4th (woohoo – marking food freedom!) to  July 18, 2014 at 5 p.m. MST.  I will then draw one name at random to receive this terrific book that will both amuse and educate you.

You can sign up to win Liz’s “Eat the Yolks” book on the UCP webpage in the sidebar!

UCP Episode 050 – The Incredible, Edible Egg: Nutrition Expert Liz Wolfe Explains Why Eggs are a Perfect Food

Liz Wolfe Author, Nutrition Expert, Chicken Enthusiast

Liz Wolfe Author, Nutrition Expert, Chicken Enthusiast

If you have backyard chickens then you probably abound in your birds’ gift of eggs, eggs and more eggs.  Your backyard bounty is delicious, nutritious and delightful, right? Conventional medical “wisdom” over the past few decades would say, “Nay!”  Current medical dogma would have you believe that eating eggs regularly (especially the yolks) will likely give you dangerously high cholesterol and lead to heart disease and your ultimate demise – boo, hiss!

Where did all of this anti-egg propaganda begin and is it even factually true?  Liz Wolfe, is a certified Nutritional Therapy Practitioner, backyard chickens enthusiast and author of the recently published book, “Eat the Yolks.” In her latest book, Liz deconstructs the myth behind the disparagement of the incredible, edible egg, by shedding light on how a handful of misconstrued studies were hijacked by big food companies to create a generation of “fat-free” carb eaters.

Liz joins us on the Urban Chicken Podcast to explore the fact that eggs are nutritionally a “perfect” food – and not the orbs of death as they have been maligned to be. Liz also discusses her own journey to chicken ownership and Paleo eating, with eggs as a key component of that new nutritional lifestyle (not diet!)

Continue reading

UCP Episode 049 – Michigan’s Right to Farm Act – No Longer Progressive Protection for Urban Chickens & Farms

Backyard Chickens in Danger in Michigan

Backyard Chickens in Danger in Michigan

Are backyard chickens, beehives, gardens a “farm” is the owner sells part or all of the bounty of the eggs, honey and vegetables from his/her yard? Until recently in Michigan, the answer was “Yes” urban, suburban and other micro-farming set-ups were considered “farms” under the guidelines governing certain state agricultural laws.

As a result of liberally protecting both non-traditional and conventional farms by law, agriculture has flourished under these state protections in Michigan. Michigan enjoys being the third largest agriculture producing states in America and is only second to California on diversity of its agriculture.

However, recent changes to the progressive farming laws in Michigan have had HUGE ramification on the future agriculture and more particularly urban chicken-keeping. Continue reading

photo by: mazaletel

UCP Episode 048 – Fermenting Chicken Feeds the Right Way!

 

Swedish Flower Hens eating fermented feed - photo courtesy of Leigh Edwards

Swedish Flower Hens eating fermented feed – photo courtesy of Leigh Edwards

Fermenting certain foods is a very traditional method of food preservation and also enhancing nutrition.  When it comes to feeding our backyard flock, fermentation is an excellent method to improve the diet and health of our flock through improving the gut chemistry of our birds.

Today’s guests on the Urban Chicken Podcast are Leigh Edwards and Sue Strantz – both experts in holistic, natural chicken keeping.  Leigh and Sue join me on the show to discuss all of the ins and outs of how to properly ferment various types of chicken feed.   Continue reading

UCP Blog – Listeners Have Hens Who Spontaneously Sex Reversed!

Lucy the Crowing Hen - photo courtesy of Karen Seelert

Lucy the Crowing Hen – photo courtesy of Karen Seelert

Synchronicity has struck in the Urban Chicken Podcast family. Last week brought two seemingly unrelated emails from separate Urban Chicken Podcast listeners about the same unusual topic - spontaneous sex reversal in their hens! That seems more than just an odd coincidence.  Continue reading

UCP Episode 047 – Langshan Chickens: Matt Stillman Discusses this Ancient Chinese Secret?

 

Bantam Black Langshan - photo courtesy of Matt Stillman

Bantam Black Langshan – photo courtesy of Matt Stillman

Question: How do you make the most strikingly beautiful, large, feather-legged, dark brown egg-laying chickens?  Answer:  Ancient Chinese Secret!

Langshan, Cochin and Brahma are the three breeds that comprise the entire Asiatic Class of chickens recognized by the American Poultry Association.  All three of these originated in China and have been causing a stir in the western poultry world since the 1800s.

Matt Stillman Langshan Breeder - photo courtesy of Matt Stillman

Matt Stillman

Today on the Urban Chicken Podcast, we are going to discuss at length the rarest of the Asiatic Class birds – the Langshan.  Matt Stillman, a breeder of both standard and bantam Langshans and District One director of the American Langshan Club, joins me on the show to share the fascinating history and attributes of this marvelous Chinese chicken.  Continue reading