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Small farms

Preventing Avian Flu in Your Small Flock

In the past three weeks, Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) has been detected wild birds in the central U.S. flyway. The HPIA strains being detected are Eurasian H5 and Eurasian H5N1. Confirmed cases of HPIA have been confirmed in commercial and small flocks in Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky and Michigan, so far none in Illinois. Protecting your Flock First, keep infected wild waterfowl (ducks and geese) and gulls from interacting with your poultry flock. Avian flu circulates in the wild...
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How to care for backyard chickens in winter

Winter begins challenges to the small flock chicken owner. There are issues that need to be solved: keeping the water from freezing, preventing the birds from getting frostbite, and maintaining egg production. Winterize the Coop Chickens need a dry, draft-free, and well-ventilated building to stay healthy and productive. A deep, 6 to 12-inch layer of dry bedding on the floor will provide insulation and help to keep your birds' feet warm. Keep roosts and nesting boxes clean. Check your chicken...
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How to Prune Fruit Trees and Maximize your Home Orchard

One of the secrets to getting fruit out of your home orchard year after year is annual pruning during the dormant season. This early-spring task can increase fruit quality, reduce the occurrence of diseases and improve tree health in the long-term, but many people are nervous about pruning or too heavy-handed with the clippers. Why should you prune fruit trees? The goal is to balance tree and fruit growth. Shaping young trees gives will keep them strong as they grow and...
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