Glasses For Chickens

A chicken manikin models a pair of Anti-Pix chicken glasses from National Band & Tag Company.

Chicken glasses produced in 1939 by National Band & Tag Company

Recently while enjoying a day off and watching a rerun of one of my favorite shows, Storage Wars, I learned that chickens used to wear glasses.

Wait, chickens used to wear glasses? Really? Yep, believe it or not, it’s true!

I’m sure that serious poultry farmers are already well aware of the fact that at one time chickens wore glasses, but for me it was an interesting piece of history that I wasn’t aware of. I’m sure that some of you other urban farmers will also find it interesting as well so I’ll share what I’ve learned.

What are chicken glasses all about?

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I Call It Turkey Heaven

lunchbox

Image by H4NUM4N via Flickr

The holidays are here so bring on the tasty treats! There just isn’t any better way to celebrate during the holiday season than with good food, so I thought I’d start by sharing a fun story and a great recipe for a fantastic sandwich.

It was about this same time last year, during lunch at a local cafe, that I first experienced what my co-workers and I have so appropriately nick-named “Turkey Heaven”. It’s simply a perfect combination of salty, tart, and sweet and quite honestly, it may be one of the best tasting sandwich creations that I’ve ever had. Unfortunately, it’s only served as a random special and it’s not on the normal everyday menu. I tell ya, if that sandwich was on the menu, I’d be in for it at least twice a week!

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The Brave Little Chickens

Last month, in an article titled, The Chicken and the Beast, I wrote about our 75lb Labrador Daisie and her strange friendship with our hens. Now, I’ve got video to back up my story!

If you’re having trouble viewing the embedded video while using Internet Explorer, you can either try viewing this page with a different browser like Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox, or you can view the video directly on YouTube.

I hope you enjoyed the video of Daisie sharing her food with the chickens. This is not a rare sight around here. The chickens try and share her meal every chance they get. I really think these hens are part pig!

What odd relationships do your pets have? Leave a comment and let us know.

Decorate Your Preserves

Mason Jars

Image by tori.tori.tori. via Flickr

For everyone that has ever tried canning or preserving their fresh fruits and vegetables from their garden, you know the challenge of a good labeling system.

We’ve tried labeling the lids of the mason jars with permanent marker, and we’ve tried paper canning labels.¬†Writing on the lid with permanent marker works fine, but it’s not all that attractive when you decide to share those beautiful preserves with others. While the paper canning labels might look a little more decorative then permanent marker, they still have a very amateur look and feel that just doesn’t do justice to all the hard work that you’ve put into growing and preserving your delicious food.

How can I give my preserves a more professional look?

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Powered By Bacon

Listen up all you bacon lovers, The Pioneer Way now has custom one of a kind “Powered by Bacon” t-shirts for sale.

Custom one of a kind Powered by Bacon t-shirt by The Pioneer Way. Made in USA!

Be one of the first to show the world your true love for bacon with a Pioneer Way original t-shirt. All Pioneer Way t-shirts feature an original design printed on a cotton t-shirt that’s made in the USA by American Apparel. Pioneer Way “Classic” t-shirts are also available.

What do you think about our new custom shirts? Leave us a comment and let us know!

Homemade Outdoor Vermicomposter

worms

Image by pupok via Flickr

Inspired by an article on building a worm composter that I read on Vegetable Gardener this morning, I decided to build one for myself.

Rather than driving down to the hardware store and spending money on supplies for my vermicomposter, I decided to check around the property to see if I had enough old scrap laying around to get this project done. Honestly, I found about 99% of what I needed and I only came up short a few screws required to secure the hinges to the lid. Luckily for me, I had a few 10 foot redwood 2×6’s that were part of an old deck that I used for the sides vermicomposter, and an old piece of 3/8 inch plywood that I used for the lid. This should amount to one of my cheapest projects ever.

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The Chicken and the Beast

Black Labrador

Image by Mr.OutdoorGuy via Flickr

I bet a lot of you think that you have the best dog in the world right? Well I suppose that it all depends on how you define “best”. I don’t know if my dog is the best, but she sure is pretty nice!

You see, my 75lb Black Labrador not only allows four full grown hens to free range around her yard, while never barking at them or chasing them, but she actually allows the hens into her personal space. What I mean is, she’ll be laying on the patio slab and she actually allows the hens to perch up on her back while they peck at her fur. What is this, some kind of poultry massage parlor?

Daisie, our ferocious four legged beast, also allows the hens to peck her food right out of her bowl while she’s eating. She never growls and never snaps, and she even let’s them peck at her mouth while she chews! Seriously, what is going on around here!

I guess her mild manor towards her friendly, feathered, yard-mates is due to the fact that she was never raised to be mean and she was around to see the hens raised from practically the egg up.

I’ll probably never really know why she allows those hens to be so close to her, while at the same time guarding the yard from other critters and intruders, however I think it’s pretty clear that if I want to go bird hunting I’m gonna need to get another dog!

Do you have similar experiences with your farm animals? Leave me a comment and tell me about your funny pet relationships, and I’ll post pictures as soon as I can sneak up on my little three-ring circus.