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About Al-Be Farm:We began our foray into animal farming with our heritage chickens - Rhode Island Reds. This dual purpose breed is more commonly known for its brown eggs, but we raised cockerels. Our "chick-boys" were raised on non-GMO and transitional grain feed from Wattermann Family Farm. When old enough, they were placed on non-sprayed pasture and moved daily. We are now trying a wider variety of heritage breeds, to determine which ones perform best in our situation. Because we have lots of predators, including the neighbor's dog and our own dog, we kept them in a chicken tractor, so they are not truly free-range birds.
We chose these heritage breed birds to raise due to their flavor and to support diversity in agriculture. If you want to learn more about heritage breeds, go to www.livestockconservancy.org
Heritage chickens take longer to reach "market weight" than modern broilers and, therefore, are not as tender as the chicken we are accustomed to cooking today. This means we have to relearn some of the techniques our parents and grandparents knew. Here is a link to information for cooking with heritage meat birds: http://www.albc-usa.org/documents/cookingwheritagechicken.pdf
We also have raised ringneck pheasant and various types of quail, using the same practices as for the heritage breed chickens.
Additionally, we have laying quail (give quail eggs a try - we love them!) and are foraging various plants on our acreage. We use ethical foraging practices.
We welcome any feedback you have for us!