Tag Archives: chickens

Episode-1325- Taking the TSP Homestead Forward in 2014

Charlie and Ralph Nap after a Long Day on the Homestead

Time for a simple old school style TSP that is basically a chat with Jack.  Today we take a look a what 2014 has in store for life at the TSP homestead.  The first year here was mostly an infrastructure establishment phase.  We installed swales and hugul beds.  We also built facilities for our livestock, systems to move they though the land, etc.  We installed garden ponds and many other systems.

The entire first year of establishment is actually available in a 90 minute video we filmed that you can find here.  The key is the first year was like building the roads and bridges, 2014 is going to be more like when the houses, buildings and shops go in, metaphorically of course.

This year is going to be awesome, Josiah will be off building the flagship PermaEthos farm which will require at least one trip by me up there for a major earthworks course and installation.  Other than that though Dorothy and I will be back to it just being the two of us and frankly even though we love Joe like family we are looking forward to it.

We are moving into a new phase, one of tweaking, edge expansion and management.  Shifting from changing the landscape to working with it.  Dorothy is even considering starting a small homestead business or businesses of her own.

Join Me Today As We Discuss…

  • Once we plant 300 plus trees this week then what
  • Plans for more mobile chicken fencing and a mobile coops
  • Charly’s progress and the BS that a dog that kills a chicken must be beaten, etc.
  • The geese “herd” is being expanded
  • Ducks into the system
  • A new “pond” near the big hen house how it will add to our system
  • A new crop in the garden ponds, Chinese water chestnut
  • This year we go big on perennial medicinal herbs
  • Bees are coming, I have no idea what to do with them but I will figure it out
  • Dorothy is considering an egg business, perhaps a plant business too
  • Pasture restoration 2.0, one horse equals a LOT of poop and hay
  • Final decision on the west pasture has yet to be made
  • Plans for our future abundance

Resources for today’s show…

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK (866-658-4465) and you might hear yourself on the air.

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TSP Homestead First Year in Review on Video

So it seems crazy but we have been on our new homestead about a year at this point.  In that time we lost our friend Blackie and gained an incredible new one “Charlie Daniels Spirko“.  We ran our first ever internship program and were so lucky to have chosen Josiah Wallingford as our intern who has become part of the family.

As to our property for our first year we focused mostly on infrastructure design.  Right now we have over 100 fruit and nut trees in damp sand waiting for our April planting workshop with a hundreds more on order.   When you look at the property now it doesn’t yet have the hundreds of varieties of plantings and frankly it is still winter so a lot of stuff is still brown, but when we really took it in, the first year was quite incredible.

We decided to document the entire property for you guys.  Likely it is a good thing we did so because in a year or two I don’t know that anyone will ever believe how this property started out without seeing it for themselves.    I am providing this video which is over an hour and 20 minutes in full 1080i HD in place of a show today.

Ill be in California until Tuesday so there won’t be any episodes officially until Wednesday next week but I will be uploading some raw audio and video from California and will try to put something new up every day for your guys.

Egyptian Fayoumi Chickens Become Delicious Dinner Items

Our 6 Egyptian Fayoumi roosters had gone absolutely mental on us.  They were terrorizing the flock and making all the pullets a nervous wreck.  We simply had too many roosters on the roost, which is what we get for buying birds “strait run”.

Additionally one of the supposed “sex link red pullets” is neither sex linked nor a pullet but a now maturing Road Island Red Rooster.  The gang of six attacked him to the point where he actually had gone into the floor of the chicken coop and disappeared for a few days, we thought he had been taken by a hawk.

But Dorothy was sure she heard something in the coop.  In the end we did hear him and pulled up the floor to get him out.  He is now my buddy and literally clings to my leg when we take a walk.  Well, that means I have a nice big old gentle rooster and didn’t need any of these psychopaths.

I really wanted to grow them out a bit more but I have to go to out of town for a bit and leaving Dorothy with yet another chore (moving their heavy chicken tractor twice a day) didn’t seem like the right thing to do.  So I got up at 0600 and slaughtered and dressed these guys.

They are about the size of a nice dressed out pheasant.  They all weighed only between 2 to 2.4 pounds and averaged right at 2.2.  So when we cook them we will do them in pairs which should feed Dorothy and I well and leave enough for a small pot of soup from the left overs.

If you are considering Fayoumis all I can say is don’t unless you have a shit ton of land and basically want feral birds that come back to roost at night and DON’T buy them strait run.  The cockerals were crowing by 3 weeks and fighting at 5 weeks, trying to harem up the hens at only 6-7 weeks and had turned into complete psychopaths by 90 days of age.

At that point they are really way to small for slaughter.    They just seem like a breed that isn’t really very useful on the small homestead.  I do think a large block of land with them going 100% free range and only Fayoumis would work with a rooster to hen ratio of say 8 to 1.

They don’t care about heat, they eat bugs and forage like mad, they don’t eat much commercial feed at all, etc.  That is one reason they mature fast but don’t grow fast is you can’t keep them on commercial feed as soon as they have the option for grasshoppers and field weeds they just have no further interest.

I know some wanted to have me film this, well, Dorothy wants no part in the slaughter of our animals so doing so would have made this a lot more of a chore.  We are going to bring in 25-50 meat birds for the fall, we will run a butchering workshop on those and that will be filmed.

Chicks First Day On Pasture

I Our 17 chicks are currently to young to be out of the brooder over night but we have great warm temps so we are now putting them in a tractor during the day and returning them to the brooder at night.

The tractor is framed form 7.5 foot stud lumber and covered with 1/4 inch hardware cloth.  The birds are two different types of red sex link hens, a male sex link (we think but it was labled a pullet by Tractor Supply but was in with all clearly sex linked pullets) and 8 Egyptian Fayoumi.  There are 4 standard Fayoumis and 4 that were marked as “cinnamon silver”.

We really don’t have a clue what a “cinnamon silver” is, we are not even 100% sure it is a Fayoumi cross or color phase as I can’t find any info on them.  The do appear a lot like the other Fayoumis in growth rate, size and other characteristics, so we shall see in time.

The dimensions of the tractor are 7.5 feet long, 24 inches high and 44 inches wide which leaves 2 inches of over hang on both sides for the oak pallets. This works great for day time use by small chickens that can easily get though 2 inch chicken wire and might strangle themselves with one inch wire.  Later it will be converted to my “Quail Mansion” tractors which I have long term plans for.

Note – I stated a 50 foot roll of hardware cloth in the video, what I meant to say was a 25 foot roll.
 

Episode-1066- Paul Wheaton on Paddock Shift Chicken Management

Paul Wheaton of RichSoil.com

Strap yourself in today folks for a great episode of TSP. Paul Wheaton is such an awesome source of knowledge on so many great topics.

Today we discuss raising chickens in a paddock shift system and why Paul considers it to be the ultimate method for raising chickens.

Make sure to check out Paul’s two awesome websites Permies.com and Richsoil.com. You can also connect with Paul on Facebook.

Today we also discuss ducks vs. chicken.  Our differing views on irrigation and using tanks in a permaculute system.

We also provide an update on the Holzer designed permaculture system in Montana and discuss why some big names in permaculture seem to turn into jerks.

Resources for Today’s Show

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK and you might hear yourself on the air.

Episode-1041- Mark Hamilton on Homesteading and Running a Micro Business

Mark, His Wife Anna and Faithful Companion Lucy.

Mark, His Wife Anna and Faithful Companion Lucy.

Mark Hamilton was born in Ohio and did a 6 year stint in US Navy.  From there he moved on to copier repair doing that for over a decade.  He also went to for photography and video work and for a time wedding videography and miscellaneous  construction jobs and worked as a  substitute teacher  Today he feels he has found his true passion as a full time homesteader and micro business operator.

Mark joins us today to discuss modern day homesteading along with how he and his wife are making supplemental income from a chicken waterer micro business.  We also discuss chicken pastures, deer deterrents, high density fruit orcharding, mini root cellars and a varitety of his projects.  Along with how people can get started with a modern homestead, a micro business or both and the role the web and blogging can play in doing that.

Additional Resources for Today’s Show

Mark’s Links

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK and you might hear yourself on the air.

Episode-1019- The Role of Animals in Permaculture

Properly Managed Chickens Can Convert Pasture to Forest

Properly Managed Chickens Can Convert Pasture to Forest

Geoff Lawton just released a great video that represents the beginnings of an awesome new project and it fits in great with today’s show topic.  In his video which addresses preparing for future crisis with permaculture Geoff shows how chickens can be used to establish a food forest 150 square meters at a time.

This is just one role that livestock both small and large can play in a permaculture system.  From talking to hundreds of people I am convinced that you can have some sort of livestock in just about any environment.

To me if you really wish to branch out into individual sustainability at some point animals must become part of the formula.  Today I discuss how to do that and how to actually sculpt land with animals being one of your tools in doing so.  We discuss how to do this on a large acreage or even a small suburban lot.

Join Me Today As We Discuss…

  • Why animals in the first place, what does nature teach us
  • Understanding soil creation both fungal and bacterial
  • Using chickens to restore a pasture OR create a food forest
  • Using ducks for pest control and free ranging them in “forest”
  • The role animals play in nutrient bioavailability
  • How improperly managed animals can destroy a system
  • How to adapt large scale animal concepts into small scale operations
  • Using animals in suburban environments
  • How to even use animals covertly in suburban environments

Resources for Today’s Show…

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK and you might hear yourself on the air.

Episode-883- Victor Alfieri on the Urban Homesteading Movement

Vic Alfieri with His 3 Hens

Vic Alfieri with His 3 Hens

Victor Alfieri lives just 17 miles from New York City on a 1/4 acre lot but he hasn’t let that stop him from being a modern homesteader.  For Victor It all started after hurricane Katrina hit the gulf coast when he started to see things a little differently.   While he wasn’t directly effected by the hurricane it got him thinking about being more prepared.  He began researching the aftermath and to him there was one thing that stood out.

No one was prepared not the general public, not the local government and certainly not the federal government.

Then a year or so later, he and his wife who both had financial business backgrounds began observing signs of bad times ahead. This put them on a course for research which began with the internet and frequent trips to the library.

Victor found an old book about the depression in 1930′s and started to remember the stories my grandmother would tell me about how they survived the depression.  Eventually he discovered square foot gardening and small livestock, specifically keeping laying hens.  His hens eventually put him on a course of conflict with his local government where he continues to fight for the right of people to simply provide themselves with top quality home grown food.

Resources for today’s show…

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK and you might hear yourself on the air.


Episode-842- Listener Calls for 2-17-12

So it is Friday and we have some calls today on some great stuff.  Today we hear about permaculture, data encryption, non intervention, the reality of poverty, libertarianism and more.

Remember to be on a show like this one just pick up your phone and call 866-65-THINK.  The best way to improve your chances of being on the air is ask your question or make your point up front, then provide details.  Also call from a quite area with a good connection and speak up so you can be well heard.  I can’t put all calls on the air but I do my best to get most of them on.

Join Us Today as we Discuss…

  • Establishing perennial plantings on remote unoccupied property
  • Some fun rants and practical advice from “Carson from Canada”
  • Protecting chickens while you are away
  • More on what real poverty is like from someone who has seen it
  • When is it time for to declare bankruptcy
  • No you don’t “make money” with credit card programs
  • Prep with food or save cash, making the decision
  • Judge Andrew Napolitano asks, “what if elections don’t matter”
  • A listener tells us how TSP has changed his life and world view
  • Designing a home business based on creating tax write offs

Resources for Today’s Show…

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK and you might hear yourself on the air.

Episode-598- Paul Wheaton from Permies.com on Permaculture, Hugelkultur, Survival Housing and More

Paul Wheaton of RichSoil.com

Strap yourself in today folks for the longest episode of TSP ever recorded, this honestly could have been two episodes because Paul Wheaton is such an awesome source of knowledge on so many great topics.

Make sure to check out Paul’s two awesome websites Permies.com and Richsoil.com.  You can also connect with Paul on Facebook.

Note near the end in a conversation about CFL lights Paul does drop the F-Bomb one time, I decided to let it ride even though I generally don’t use that word on the air.  Anyone objecting to this should see section three of my content disclaimer.

Today we discuss a huge variety of topics that range from raising chickens, to the complete elimination of the need for irrigation, to the ultimate eco building and even the use of rocket mass heaters.

Join Us Today As We Discuss…

  • What we can learn from the work of Sepp Holzer
  • Why it might even make sense to plant poisonous plants were livestock feed
  • How and why permaculture should be profitable
  • What is hugelkultur and how can it eliminate the need for irrigation
  • Why you may want to practice paddock rotation with livestock like chickens
  • What is a wofati building
  • How you can build a home with no need of air conditioning or heat at 1/5 the conventional cost of construction
  • Building and using rocket mass heaters
  • More!

Resources for Today’s Show

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK and you might hear yourself on the air.