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Mini Glossary of Chicken Terminology

One of the great benefits of keeping chickens is that it gives you an opportunity to expand your vocabulary. The world of chicken keeping is full of odd or potentially confusing words and phrases, like those in this mini glossary of chicken terminology. Bloom: The moist, protective coating on a freshly laid egg that dries […]

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Why Are Some Egg Yolks More Yellow Than Others?

How Egg Yolk Gets its Coloring

Egg yolks get their golden yellow color from the same plant pigments that result in the skin color of yellow-skin breeds. These pigments are also responsible for beak and bill color in chickens and ducks, and for their brightly colored feathers. The pigments are of two main types— carotene and xanthophyll. Carotene is orange to […]

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Sexing Ducklings and Goslings

sexing waterfowl

Male and female waterfowl of the same breed and variety are difficult to tell apart until they are several weeks old. Except for a few autosex breeds of geese, the only way to determine the gender of waterfowl hatchlings is by vent sexing. Happily that is not nearly as difficult as it is for chickens […]

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How to Prevent Angel Wing in Ducks and Geese

How to Prevent Angel Wing in Ducks and Geese

Angel wing is a condition in which the flight feathers of one or both wings of a duck or goose twist away from the body. It occurs when either the primary feathers overlap in reverse order — over each other, rather than under, from outer to inner feather — or, more commonly, the entire last […]

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4 Ways to Tell Male and Female Chicks Apart

Four traditional methods are used to tell male and female chicks apart. Which method is most appropriate for any specific batch of chicks depends on their breed and variety, their age, and the skill of the observer. Vent Sexing Vent sexing, also called cloacal sexing, is a method of determining a hatchling’s gender by examining […]

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22 Autosex Breeds of Chickens and Geese

Autosex chicks have differing down colors at hatch, by which the males may be readily distinguished from the females. Autosex differs from sex-link in being a straightbred (purebred) characteristic, rather than the result of a hybrid cross between two separate breeds. Here is how to tell the males from the females in 22 autosex breeds […]

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5 Things To Know Before Building A Chicken Coop

Building a chicken coop can be an extremely easy, fun, and educational experience for your family. However, it can also be a challenging and stressful experience if you don’t know where to start. There’s a lot to keep track of when building your own chicken coop, and every step is extremely important for keeping your […]

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Why Do We Call the Turkey a Turkey?

Why Do We Call the Turkey a Turkey?

Wild turkeys, indigenous to the Americas, were kept by Native Americans for centuries before the arrival of Europeans. Early Spanish explorers are credited with transporting American turkeys to Europe. There the birds were selectively bred for a couple of centuries before being brought back to America by early settlers. From those birds sprang the domestic […]

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