Red Gate Farm said...

Your beets are great! I live just "south of the border" near Lynden, Washington.

We only have chickens, mine eat anything (including my garden if I let them). Our friends have both ducks and chickens (3 and 9 respectively) and they get along great.

In my experience, chickens are friendly as long as you work at socialization when they are young... I have read that some breeds are better than others. Plus if you only get hens, you can also have eggs! Mine lay brown, blue, green and white!

Good luck...

Kerrisdale Design Inc said...

My parents have both chickens and ducks on their farm, which my kids ADORE. My littlest especially is obsessed with the birds. I'll send you my mom's contact info if you want to get the rundown :)


Jane said...

hmm. I am pretty sure I have seen chickens and ducks together in coops in my time on various farms.

I am not sure about brands of chicken. The fact I said 'brands' demonstrates my ignorance. I guess you don't have eagles where you are? At my mother's farm she couldn't keep her chickens alive because they were in an open area and the wedge tailed eagles flew down from the mountains and dragged them away.

Good luck. That is the one annoying thing about being organic. You can't blast those pests to kingdom come with a nice dose of chemicals!

country girl said...

Unfortunately I am no bonafide chicken lady, though I hope to be some day!

I just wanted to tell you how luscious that first photo is...wow!

Good luck...it seems like you really want chickens, so you should finally get some! :)


Jacqueline said...

Good luck with this...sounds awful.

Vintage Simple said...

Oh, dear. I'm sorry to hear about the flies... My grandmother used to keep both chickens and ducks together, and they always seemed to get along. And were kind enough to us kids.

As for your other questions, I will leave it to the more experienced out there.


Catherine said...

I can't help you with your chicken/duck question ~ but I do know pretty beets when I see them! :)

Hope you get an answer to help you with your fruit/fly problem!
xo Catherine

Megan said...

mypetchicken.com has good resources and you may be able to find some useful information.

A really good read is Ashley English's book "Keeping Chickens" - an excellent reference book and very useful for first time chickeners!

mimi charmante said...

I *adore* my girls, as you know. I haven't done ducks because from what I have heard from friends who have them, while they are absolutely darling, they are also incredibly messy (duck poop in a big way...). The girls are easy, they are fine with kids (my really socialized ones let the littles carry them around) and yes, the eggs are also grand. If you email me I will send you my number if you need it for any breed questions, etc...
Bon chance!

pollydove said...

Your beets really are beautiful and sadly I don't have any advice for you - but you do have my condolences ... what a nightmare. Good LUCK!

Muddy Boot Dreams said...

I don't have ducks anymore, but when we did, the
land was totally free of slugs, bugs, and anything creeping and crawling, this was in Langley slug capital of the world. They were a little noisy early in the morning, and things were kind of covered in duck poop. But we loved them.

Best of luck in your fight.

Jen @ Muddy Boot Dreams

kate / tinywarbler said...

oh no! keep those nasty bugs away! best of luck, i hope chickens or ducks (or both) will take care of it.

Yvette said...

Can't help with your chicken and ducks question, wish I could. Just wanted to let you know how much I liked your photo of technicolor beets. Beautiful. Good luck with your bug problem.

Tracie said...

Oh no! Not the blueberries!

I don't know anything about ducks. I only have chickens. I also have two kids that love chickens and our most kid friendly birds are our Wyandottes and our Cochin. Our Dominique have been pretty social too. Handle them a lot as chicks and that will go a long way. Our best layers are Rhode Island Reds and the Dominique but the reds are very skittish. Good birds but don't like being handled.

I have 6 hens right now and they can cover a lot of ground pretty quickly but it might take a few more for half an acre. Maybe start with a dozen and see how it goes?

If you are worried about predators then build them a tractor and move it around the space you want cleared. It's not as easy as free ranging but it is safer for the birds. Something to think about anyway.

That's all I've got. Wish I could help more. Good luck!

Jaimie MacGibbon said...

I was once at a farm and there were ducks and chickens living in harmony together. In fact, there were some ducklings and the hens seemed to have adopted them and were preening them and sleeping right next to them. So, in my non-expert opinion, I'd say that they can get along!

Those beets look delicious!