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PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2008 1:00 am 
now the monsoon trough has descended upon me i suddenly remember my wet weather survival. here are some tips:

always think it will be raining for the next month, even when the month has ended and it is still raining.

your birds are going to be terrified of you when you have an umbrella or drizabone or hat (if you don't usually wear one) on.

have a good pair of gumboots that come up to your knees.

have a good dolphin torch so you can check things at night instead of lieing in bed worrying

have a rain gauge and check it. sometimes an inch can feel like 2 mls and 2 mls an inch. it is good to know how much you have.

be prepared to get wet yourself.

check all birds daily if not twice a day. for health and how wet they are.

check pens and tarps and if the birds can at least sleep somewhere dry. tarps can leak and will usually leak where most inconvenient.

use those cheap blue tarps when/where necessary. they not only reduce wet but they reduce drafts.

check nests that they are dry and clean. check broodies. if she is soaking better to throw out the eggs and save her.

ensure chicks are dry, especially in the evening, and well fed.

keep a close eye out for coughs and sneezes and miserable birds. if you do not want to make life easier for them.....kill them then and there.

keep large quantities of old dry newspaper on hand and/or clean dry shavings and cardboard boxes for emergency boxing/caging of birds. cardboard boxes can be laid flat while in storage.

with feather footed birds thick newspaper helps dry out foot feathers.

watch for bullying as birds will be confined and seeking dry space and the dominant ones will get it and the weaker ones will miss out.

only feed as much feed as they will eat in a day and make sure feed is stored in a dry spot. feed can go mouldy quickly and if wet can go toxic within a couple of hours if the weather is warm.

it is better to keep birds locked up in a small dry area than to let them out to get soaking wet.

what once was healthy litter when dry, once wet becomes a cess pool for disease and parasites.

watch for coccidosis amongst chicks, even older chicks.

watch for heavy worm infestations. worms love wet warm weather.

game birds (hard feather) are much more tolerant to the wet than the soft feather birds who once wet can take ages to dry. where as the hard feather makes a tight fitting cover that tends to prevent water entering.

watch out where you locate pens as they could be on places where run off is greatest (ie a river)or water collects (ie a pond).

even ducks get miserable so see to their needs too, even if it just sitting under a car or trailer.

mulch grassy hay makes a good layer between the mud and the bird. it helps keep them clean. just keep adding layers as the top layer gets dirty. it all compacts down. not good to use lucurne type hays as they become rotten very quickly. even sand, gravel or wood chips is better than mud.

all chicks are vulnerable. the younger the worse they are. often their mothers have not a clue and cart them around in the wet grass, the rain or just sit down to cover the chicks and the water rises around them...or they get wetter and wetter. lock them up where they are clean and dry.

that is all i can think of now. i might add more as i think of it.

i think i might have to empty my rain gauge before i go to bed tonight as it looks like it is going to piss down all night and it started with 10mls in it from today. nothing more frustrating than an overflowing rain gauge.
k.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 1:29 am 
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Superior Bird
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Isn't australia funny. It has rained here once in the last 6 weeks I think and then is was hardly enough to wash the brown grass. Yet in a month or two it will be a case of rushing out to feed and check on the chooks in the rain morning and night. Nelly's tips will be great then....


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 1:32 am 
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Golden Swan
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Location: Albany, Western Australia
Ooooops

Just to set the record straight - they are ruff's tips. I just found the post in the lost file and copied and pasted to get it back on the forum so it say's it's mine now!

Just wanted to acknowledge ruff as the author of this excellent post!

NellyG

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 9:09 am 
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Discerning Duck
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Location: Ormond, Vic
I wish we could get rain like that in Melbourne! Havent had a decent day of rain for a long time :cry: my poor vegie patch


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 10:21 am 
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Dapper Duck
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Location: Coffs Harbour/NSW/Australia
Hi everyone, we have just had 320mm of rain over 48 hours - this has been our wettest year since living here now for five years. We are in the hinterland of Coffs ... our poor babies are soaked to the skin so just about to go out and make them a bit more comfortable. Wish we could send the rain down to you. Cheers, Suzij


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 10:27 am 
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Newbie
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It would be nice to get some rain here


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2008 5:15 am 
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Old Mother Goose
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Location: St georges basin (NOWRA) nsw
I'm going to be doing a wet weather yard for my chooks... basically a thin layer of sand covered with 1 foot of blue metal. drains well, dries fast and easy to hose off. being on a slope with gardens behind the plants will love the poop run off.

i just stick newspaper or cardboard under the roosts... change it often and use it as mulch/fertiliser and weed suppressant in the vege patch.

cheers.

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2008 8:58 am 
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Old Mother Goose
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Location: Forest Tasmania
I've kept this one as a favourite in my browser for when our wet weather hits us again..

Great information Ruff..thank you.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 04, 2009 9:45 pm 
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Junior Champion Bird
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You are all so lucky you get rain!

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 05, 2009 9:29 pm 
here is a tip i have recently found out from others who have used it sucessfully and now i have tried it:

if you have wet smelly areas (especially if cattle have peed everywhere in your shed) and also a strong smell of amonia and mould...scatter hydrated lime around. this removes the smell of amonia very quickly and freshens things up. to some who ask why don't you just dry the place....well you can't here in the north...it just keeps raining and the humidity is so high the water will no exaporate.

i know how depressing things can become when everything is wet and revolting and things just seem like they couln't get worse. no matter how prepared you think you are things do go wrong and this hydrated lime was a godsend.

i didn't kill any birds and i scattered it very heavilly. i am not sure if it affects skin but the affect on the feet is nothing compared to the affects of moulds and amonia in the lungs.

i hope this helps someone at least.

k


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 06, 2009 12:49 pm 
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Junior Champion Bird
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Location: North Maclean QLD
I have been using hydrated lime for years. I use it in the stables as a deoderant and disinfectant, especially on the wet wee patches. I also give my pens a dose when I clean the out and renew the ground cover. Great stuff. Another good thing about it is it does also keep the creepy crawlies down as well but sweetens the soil still for earth worms etc.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 06, 2009 5:04 pm 
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Clever Cockerel
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Gee, and I just spent the better part of an hour trying to get my pens wet and cool!! 42+ here and no signs of it giving up. We have another day of high temperatures forecast for tomorrow, and the SUPPOSEDLY cool change will come through on Sunday. Even 30 would be a darn sight cooler than this. My thoughts to everyone trying to keep chooks alive in this inferno.

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 07, 2009 5:10 pm 
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Showy Hen
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Just want you all to know that each of you are in my thoughts as you try so desperately to keep your birds healthy and well in the awful conditions your country is experiencing. Mother Nature cannot be reckoned with... heavy rain and flooding in one area and heat waves etc in another.... Good luck to each of you.

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PostPosted: Sun Feb 08, 2009 9:51 pm 
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Showy Hen
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Joined: Sat Feb 02, 2008 11:17 pm
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Location: Anstead Brisbane
Ruff re your torch.

Its well worth purchasing a Surefire rechargeable torch - I bought a second battery and also got mine when overseas. Its white light and is amazing for seeing things, the reach of the light exceeds any regular battery torch without any effort - when I was a general duties copper it was fantastic - way better than the supplied torches. They are about $350 (newer models now) but its so worth it. Mine is almost 10 years old and last year I replaced a battery for $60 and a bulb for $40 (my model is now hard to get parts for). Definitely worth it.

I used to have a dolphin too, but at least I claimed depreciation on this one :wink:

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PostPosted: Sun Feb 08, 2009 10:11 pm 
my torch is a led lenser P17 (similar to a mag light). it is great. it is excellent on batteries and i can narrow or expand the beam.the light is a white light. i don't know how waterproof it is but i have got it covered in mud and used it in the drizzle. i also use dolphin torches but this new torch is much better. i point it at the ceiling and it gives me enough light to work by in the shed. i can also dim the light or brighten it. those cheap rechargable spotlights don't seem to be any good and when they fade they fade quickly leaving you stranded in the dark.

however i have only had the P17 for about 3 months so i have still yet to find out what it will put up with. i don't have to hit goats on the head with them anymore (not a smart move) so they may last longer. :lol:

k


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