Sunday, June 20, 2010

Questions, Breeder Reports and Tips for Big Bird!

Use this blog post for this weeks unrelated questions and tips and for Breeder Reports.

Breeder Report: Tom Ressel

I believe I read on your blog that you gave the hen fattening food like song food and sunflower while sitting on eggs so that she would generate more heat to incubate the eggs.
I had been in the habit of removing the cock while the hen was on the eggs so he would not get too fat, also this allowed me to use him with hens. I had not been in the habit of returning the cocks back to the original hen until just before the chicks had fledged.
After reading in your blog how important it was to get the cock back with the hen early to get more fertile eggs, I started putting him back in her nest shortly after I banded the chicks.
It worked, this year I raised 30 babies from four hens.


As you break up your breeding pairs, take a moment to trim their nail, oil their legs and trim the overgrowth tip off their beak before putting in a flight. I trim nails and beaks with regular trim nail clippers. When you trim nails, be sure and not cut the blood vessel in the nail. If you do, stop the bleeding with quik stop or regular flour.



When I hand feed some of the border weaning age chicks, they just nibble air and don't get the feed. Surely they will die...


Aren't you afraid to band those German chicks as their mother threw the last chick out of the nest and resulted in its death? What will you differently this time? For Answer and tips to avoid this problem: click on comments on the posting Amazing Third Chance!!!


Anonymous said...


Just finished my breeding season with Borders and I'm happy with the result, lots of young on the perches. I've just two nest's still being reared, the chicks are 23/24 days old, so will be taken away from "mom" pretty soon. But I notice one of them is crying and seems reluctant to start eating.

I read with interest your tips on handfeeding etc. This year I had two fully feathered youngsters that refused to eat. I lost both of them which was very upsetting.
I tried handfeeding them nad they took the food...but still died.

I am beginning to think that they had some underlying problem/condition that prevented them from eating.
Their brothers and sisters of the same age took to eating, no problem and they were left wiuth the hen who fed them until they were 27 days old.

I noticed the two that wouldn't eat seemed to "nibble" at the air with their beaks as if they thought they were eating something.

Any comments welcome

Linda Hogan said...

If they nibble air and have no food in the crop, they will die.

Many chicks will nibble air before they learn to let you feed them. When they are only getting air, I force open the beak and push in some food. Normally, a couple of times of force feeding and they start eating the food. Most of the time it is nibbling again but they are getting food.

Anonymous said...

How do you trim the beak? What do you use?

Anonymous said...

Amazing dancing Border!!

I ahve a lovely hen Border who is raising her second brood of chicks, she has a method of getting the chicks to raise their heads for food that I have never seen before. Instead of "calling" to them lke most hens do, she "stomps" her feet on the rim of the plastic nestbowl to get them to beg, it really is very amusing to watch. I don't know how she came up with the idea, but it works!!!!

Anonymous said...

Hi Linda, I have a few questions and a update for you today...
I bought my first color fed canary
she is a vibrant salmon color, I havent had much luck finding the products I thought I could get to feed the coloring agent, I was wondering what you use and if you know anything about pastochemi r,
I got a box of that but everything on the box is in languages I cannot read....
I also have a hen that does not produce eggs ? she acts like a nesting canary, but this bird has never laid an egg, can you explain this for me ? I have used this hen as a foster, so did I ruin her by showing her she dont have to lay eggs and she still can get a baby ?
she is getting old enough I should retire her, she builds a beatiful nest and she sits on no eggs ?

Frisky the nare problem boy is completely back to normal, I am thrilled to report there is no scarring no hole no nothing, you cannot tell he ever had a problem he is such a stud, and I have you to thank for it

so THANK YOU Linda, I love this blog, wish I could get here more often especially this time of year!
unfortunately sping and summer are my busiest times of year with my birds and my work, your love and knowledge have helped me so much over the years I cannot thank you enough. I am almost thru my breeding season I will let you know how that went when we wrap it up around here.

Linda Hogan said...

I use bogena which I get from Miami Pet Supply for coloring. It is important that you not change coloring agents during the molt as that will make them multi-colored and not attractive.

Hens vary in how many years they are productive. I have a few that had a few chicks at six years but then some die by four..

Glad Frisky is fine. That was a nasty nare problem.

Anonymous said...

Hi, Linda,
I have tried to find Miami Pet Supply online and been unsuccessful. Could you please post the URL for the company? I have a number of red factor canaries and would like to use the Bogena product to color them up, but cannot find it. Thank you so much!