Adventures of a Modern Day, Middle-Aged Hero, on the Glory Road(to family security)


Cluckin' and Sproutin'.

Well, the chickens seem to be doing okay with our recent cold snap.  I have a 25-watt bulb going in their coop, and while I don't have an extra thermometer I'm willing to let get pooped on, by calibrated hand, it feels 20-30 degrees warmer in the coop than outside.  On the colder nights, where it is predicted to be single digits, I actually close the door to the coop too, trapping the girls inside from 9ish until 5ish.  Tonight will be the real test...they are predicting temperatures of less than zero tonight.  I will probably close the door, AND add a gallon jug or two or hot water to a corner of the coop.

With the colder, darker, shorter days, we have seen a decrease in chicken productivity.  In the fall, our 5 chickens were giving us 5, and sometimes 4 eggs a day.  Now, we are getting 3, and occasionally 4 eggs a day.  Still more than enough for our family...it just takes longer to build up to the point where we feel the need to give some away.

I also did some actual data collecting on my sprouting efforts.  Sprouting is good for two reasons...it converts some of the hard-to-digest part of the seed into more a more easily digestible form...plus, it DOES give you a return on your investment...more food mass.  If I was squared away, I would have this in a graph...but it's the weekend.

Starting with 52 grams of wheat berry's, I ended up with 152 grams of sprouts, 64 grams of lentils ended up with 294 grams of spouts, and 34 grams of clover seed gave 292 grams of spouts(showing here):

I actually let my stuff go a little further than people normally would for sprouts...the finished product is closer to fodder, than spouts.  The greening is a little better for the birds.

So yeah....from a straight 'mass' standpoint, the clover is the clear winner...but the clover seed I bought was over $6 a pound from an organic food store, while the lentils are like a buck a bag...and the lentils I've been sprouting so far are not new.  They are ones we bought in bulk and vacuum sealed some number of years ago (4-6?). 

We haven't found any type of spouts yet that the birds don't like.  I even did up a quart jar of kidney beans, just because I wanted to see if it would work.  

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