Norton Creek Poultry and Chicken Lore
Books from Robert Plamondon's Publishing Company, Norton Creek Press.

Success With
Baby Chicks

Robert Plamondon
More Information

Gardening Without Work
Ruth Stout
More Information

Poultry Production
Leslie E. Card
More Information

Genetics of the Fowl
F. B. Hutt
More Information

Feeding Poultry
G.F. Heuser
More Information

Robert Plamondon's Poultry Newsletter, March 4, 2005

As always, if you're tired of this newsletter, please scroll down to the bottom of the message for easy instructions to make your subscription go away.

Get The Dollar Hen Cheap at Amazon! is selling one of my reprinted classics at a ridiculously low price: $11.95 instead of $18.95. If you ever thought you might be interested in a classic of practical free-range poultry-keeping, back in the days when men were men and tractors were horses, take as look at

The Dollar Hen. (The link will take you to the Amazon page for the book.)

I'm very fond of The Dollar Hen. Though a 95-year-old book isn't long on techniques you can cut out and paste down without making changes, it inspired many of best ideas I've ever had on the farm. For instance, it talked about the old-style "fireless brooders," which relied solely on the chicks' body heat. This has never been very practical for very young chicks, but the book points out that it's not a bad gimmick for older ones. I tried it as sort of range brooder to keep chicks comfy when they've first left the brooder house. (I wrote it up on my Web page.)

Of course, I used modern materials, namely aluminized bubble insulation, but the basic concept was from the book, and it wasn't an idea I'd heard elsewhere.

The author, Milo Hastings, was an interesting man. He wrote a classic of science fiction, City of Endless Night, in 1919. He wrote a musical in the Thirties. And he also invented the forced-air electric incubator. You see a foretaste of this in The Dollar Hen, since he has a very long chapter on incubation, which tells you an amazing amount of stuff, much of it still very applicable today, especially if you use a still-air incubator.

Anyway, check it out on They're offering a really good deal.

Get 'Em Cheaper On eBay

I'm auctioning books on eBay every week, and people are getting really good deals. Check it out: My items on eBay

Baby Chick Time

I saw baby chicks in the feed store on Monday! I was surprised, because it was still February, but there they were. I wasn't tempted, though, since we have 100 pullet chicks and 100 broiler chicks in the brooder houses already.

As I describe in my book, Success With Baby Chicks, you can tell males from females in some popular breeds. Not with perfect accuracy, but enough so that you can get a flock of 75%-100% hens out of a batch of straight-run feed-store chicks. One method works with Barred Rocks and Silver Laced Wyandottes; the other works with Rhode Island Reds and New Hampshire Reds. Check it out!

Beware of feed stores that offer free chicks without telling you what they are. Sometimes they're surprisingly generous, and then it turns out that they've given you male White Leghorns, which of course will never lay eggs and will grow up to be scrawny and hardly worth butchering. Free chickens can worth a lot less than you paid for them.

March To-Do List

Inspired by a similar list in Jull's Successful Poultry Management, McGraw-Hill, 1943.

  • Brood chicks.
  • "Break up" broody hens.
  • Plant greens for chickens.
  • Begin chick scratch after two weeks.
  • Eat more eggs and poultry at home.
  • Hatch baby chicks.
  • Use artificial lights.
  • Remove damp or dirty litter.

If you like this newsletter, please send copies to all your friends!

Copyright 2005 by Robert Plamondon. Permission is granted for copying if the material from here to the end of the message is left unaltered.

This newsletter is sent out occasionally by Robert Plamondon to anyone who asks for it, plus the customers of Norton Creek Press, publisher of:

Norton Creek Press
36475 Norton Creek Road
Blodgett, Oregon 97326

To subscribe or unsubscribe from this mailing list, use the handy box below:

Your Email address:
What should I do?
Majordomo tool by Cliff, Shaven Ferret Productions, and available from Cliff's Perl Script Collection

Or send an email to and put the word "subscribe" or "unsubscribe" in a line by itself at the beginning of the message.

Get My Free Newsletter!

Farm & Poultry Pages

Main Page
Poultry FAQ
Brooders and Coops
Robert's Farm Blog
Rural Living Articles
Giant Reading List
Chicken Jokes

My Other Sites

Norton Creek Farm
Norton Creek Press
Hypnosis Blog
Alternative Therapists
Diabetes and Autism Home

Read My Books!

Featured Titles

Gardening Without Work
More Information

Success With Baby Chicks
More Information

Fresh-Air Poultry Houses
More Information

I publish books that I believe in, under the Norton Creek Press label.

ogle Code for Remarketing Tag -->