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Showing posts from March, 2016

Native bush turkeys and domestic chickens - our experience!

Last year in early summer, I thought one of my baby chooks had escaped and was hiding in the bushes in the backyard. I chased after her for a while before I realised that it wasn't one of my chooks but a bush turkey chick! It was the same size as one of my Aracana babies just a lot darker. It was kinda cute and we felt a bit special that the chick was in our backyard.


By December it had grown a lot and we decided that it was probably a boy and christened him Christmas Turkey - or Chris for short! Once we became convinced it was a boy we started looking on the internet to see if it was indeed still cool and fun to have a giant male bush turkey in your backyard along with chickens...


All the articles that I found said that they were trouble. Big gangs of bush turkey boys visit backyards with procreation on their minds and look to the domestic hen to satisfy those needs. For most people the mating part isn't an issue as the eggs even if they are fertile aren't being incubated…

Photo Friday - Pink

Pink flowers by the dam at dusk. 


 Contribution to Photo Friday. Click on the link and see what others have posted!

Painting wooden spoons for presents!

I like wooden spoons! I have a few favourites that I use over and I love them. My favourite is one I got from the markets from a guy that hand carved them. They weren't cheap, but they were beautiful. I bought one and had a plan to get one a week until I had "the set" but he never came back...

So like everyone else, I have an odd collection of wooden spoons that I got from different places at different times that I use in the kitchen for stirring everything from large pots of jam to sautéing in a non stick pan. I decided to share my love of wooden spoons and give them to loved ones for Christmas gifts. I found spoons varied in quality and price and in the end went for middle of the road spoons - but I made them into fun, quirky and better quality ones at home!

Here's what I did...


I bought all my spoons from various places and sanded them a little to make sure they were smooth and free from splinters.


I wrapped a piece of electrical tape tightly around the handle at…

Simple self watering or wicking bed made from a plastic barrel.

In our latest attempts at growing more than just a few herbs we decided to build a wicking bed. We had been looking at a few videos on You-tube like this one and this one on Rob Bobs channel and thought that even if we weren't prepared to experiment on that scale right now, we did however have a blue plastic barrel hanging around that we thought might do the trick, albeit on a smaller scale.

The idea of a wicking bed is that it has a storage area or reservoir of water at the bottom of the bed and the roots and soil "wick" the water up to the roots. Sort of in the way that, even though only a corner of the towel is hanging in the pool, the water climbs up the towel making half the towel damp, not just the corner that landed in the pool.

So one afternoon we gathered together the bits we thought we would need, and here's what we did...

First of all we cut our barrel in half and added some handles so that we can move them if we have to when they are filled with dirt and…

Photo Friday - Structural

Structural.  A ridged fence marches down to the lake in tandem with its shadow.


 Contribution to Photo Friday. Click on the link and see what others have posted!

Safe waterers for baby chicks (and big chooks too!)

We hatched some chick from eggs put under a broody hen - which was soooooo much fun a while back and I have a friend who is about to do the same thing. We were discussing how to make sure thee chicks have access to water that lasts all day while she is at work but isn't deep enough for them to drown in.

The biggest problem is that chicks need water, but for some reason they think they are ducks and leap right on in. Their feathers aren't waterproof and they get waterlogged and cant get out. If its deep enough, bad things can happen. Shallow dishes are fine unless the water evaporates too quickly or the chicks stand on the edge and tip them up... (who would have thought that giving water to chicks was so hard!?)

We found a couple of solutions that worked well for us. Once you have seen a couple of these ideas, you'll have a light bulb moment and be able to rush out and make you own at no cost!

Here's what we did...



The first idea that we came up with was to put some cl…

Borax v Boric Acid for killing Cockroaches!

If you live in certain climates then cockroaches and other creepies are going to be part of your life.
We had terrible problems with cockroaches a few years back and after a chat with a chemist friend I changed from using Borax to Boric Acid as they way to get rid of our cockroach problem.

The active ingredient seems to be the Boron that is in both Borax (Left) and Boric Acid. (Right) The main difference seems to be that Borax is a crystal and easier for the cockroaches to ignore as its large and easy to see. The Boric Acid is a powder and dissolves into the sugar/milk mixture that I use and is ingested along with the attractive sugary part of the dish and Voila - no more cockroaches!



Here's what I did...

I buy my boric acid online via eBay or on Amazon. As you only need a teaspoon at a time, a few hundred grams lasts a long time!

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