Friday, 13 January 2017

5 Great Features of the Flyte so Fancy Protection Pens

Whether it is for keeping your hens off the vegetable patch or ensuring they stay safe from marauding foxes, the Flyte so Fancy Protection Pen, provides a secure, walk in run, for your hens to get about the busy work of being a chicken, in peace and quiet.

Walk In Runs for Chickens
Flyte so Fancy Protection Pen
With orders for Protection Pens flying in post Christmas holidays, this weeks Flyte so Fancy Chicken Blog has a look at why they are ideal for so many poultry keepers (and why they are perfect for current Avian Flu restrictions too). 
Flyte so Fancy Protection Pens for Poultry
19 Gauge Weldmest is used on all our runs & pens
  1. SIZE - A strange one to start on perhaps, but as a 6ft 2" poultry keeper, being able to actually stand up right in a poultry run, is a real bonus. The maximum height of the Protection Pen stands at 6ft 6" means you can nip in and out of your run for topping up feed or spending time with your hens, without getting on your hands and knees. 
  2. SPACE - The large spacious area, gives plenty of room for placing perches, activity centres, feeders, drinkers and other things to keep chickens entertained, as they scratch about. 
  3. LENGTH - Not all gardens are the same size and we don't all have the same amount of room for our hens. starting at 9ft long, the protection pens can be increased in 3ft increments, to a maximum length of 24ft, meaning the Protection pen can match any garden size. 
  4. TIMBERS - The framing of the entire Protection Pen is made from sturdy 38 x 38 pressure treated timbers. Once screwed together this framework gives an incredibly sturdy but lightweight structure, strong enough to keep predators out and your girls safe. 
  5. WELDMESH - All of the framework of our Protection Pens is stapled in place with 19 gauge, inch by half inch galvanised weldmesh, so strong you can't bend it with your fingers. This is then covered with a plastic green coating, making the pen un-obtrusive in the surroundings of your garden. 
The Flyte so Fancy Protection Pens can also arrive with helpful additions, such as;
  • Polycarbonate Roofing to keep your hens out of the rain, sleet, snow, and any other weather that can be thrown at us. Fitted by the workshop, if ordered at the same time, the Protection Pen arrives with the roofing already installed. 
  • Handles. For Pens up to 9 x 15, helpful handles can be added to each corner, making it possible for the pen to be lifted and moved to a fresh patch of grass. 
  • Rainshades. If you don't want to cover the whole run roof, but still want to afford your hens some shelter, then our extra large removable Rainshades are ideal. Held in place in each corner by strong bungee ties, the Rainshades offer both shade in the summer and a dry spot from the rain in the winter.
Avian Flu - Regarding the current restrictions imposed by DEFRA, Flyte so Fancy Protection Pens fall within the restrictions of having your birds "inside" if the roof is covered by polycarbonate roofing or a tarpaulin. The welmesh used is small enough to prevent wild birds getting at your hens and as such allows your hens the freedom of "outside" while remaining safe. 

If you have any questions regarding our Protection Pens for Poultry why not leave a comment below, or call us on 01300 345229 to speak to a member of the Flyte so Fancy team. 


Thanks for Reading
James

Tuesday, 20 December 2016

Outbreak of Bird Flu in the UK - Tips for surviving the Bird Flu Rules

With the first case of Avian Flu confirmed on Thursday last week at a farm in Lincolnshire, tighter restrictions are now in place with all gatherings of poultry and captive birds currently banned in Wales. 

After taking some simple measures from our blog Avian Flu - Advice for Poultry Keepers
and the further advice from Chief Veterinary Officer that bio security should never be compromised. The following is a recap of the measures that should be in place and what to look for if you think your birds are sick.


Mother Hen protecting her chicks from Bird Flu

What you need to know about the Avian Flu restrictions

  1. Outbreaks of H5N8 Avian Influenza (Bird Flu) have been confirmed in poultry and wild birds across Europe and one case in the UK.
  2. The Exclusion zone remains in place until 6th January 2017 and may be renewed if the danger has not passed.
  3. All poultry keepers must keep their birds housed and under-cover to minimise risk of infection from wild birds.
  4. This is a precautionary action to help prevent further outbreaks in the UK.
  5. Increased bio security measures should be in place. This includes disinfecting clothing and footwear before and after entering poultry areas e.g. wear disposable gloves/coveralls and add a footbath outside the run area filled with Virkon S disinfectant
  6. Symptoms to look out for: - Swollen head; neck and throat discolouration; loss of appetite; respiratory distress; diarrhoea. If in doubt, call your vet. 
Boredom Buster for hens
Keep your birds occupied and reduce
boredom during the current Bird Flu
restrictions by providing pecking treats

What to do to help your birds survive the Bird Flu rules

  1. Disinfect house and run weekly. Add a footbath.
  2. Use plenty of absorbent bedding to keep birds dry.
  3. Sprinkle BioDri or Stalosan to absorb moisture and sanitise the house. 
  4. Hang boredom busters and pecking blocks to prevent boredom and feather pecking. 
  5. Put a good layer of wood chip in their run, don’t leave them to scratch around on bare earth.
  6. Create an enclosed area and cover roof with tarpaulin, rainshades or large PVC sheets

Bio-Security footbath
Create a simple footbath using a
tub trug and some Virkon S Disinfectant

Bird Flu - Minimising the risk of infection

We list our 6 top buys to survive the bird flu restrictions

To avoid running out of any poultry essentials over the Christmas period, our last order date for guaranteed pre-Christmas deliveries is Wednesday 21st December - Order by midday to avoid disappointment. We will be continuing to dispatch right up until Friday 23rd December, lunch time and we return to FSF HQ on 3rd January.

Rural Affairs Secretary, Lesley Griffiths is encouraging all poultry keepers, including those with fewer than 50 birds to provide details of their flocks to the Poultry Register so they can be contacted immediately in the event of any further avian flu outbreaks and associated restrictions. See https://www.gov.uk/guidance/poultry-registration for more information on how you can register.

Wednesday, 14 December 2016

6 Top Tips To Help Your Hens Survive The Bird Flu Rules

8 days into the 30-day Bird Flu Prevention Zone declared by the Government Chief Veterinary Officer, we thought we could help answer some of the questions you might have. 


Mother Hen protecting her chicks from Bird Flu


After taking some simple measures from last week's blog Avian Flu - Advice for Poultry Keepers, here are our top tips to help you and your poultry survive the remaining 20 days of the bird flu bio security requirements.


Bird Flu - What to do


  1. Disinfect house and run weekly. Add a footbath.
  2. Use plenty of absorbent bedding to keep birds dry.
  3. Sprinkle BioDri or Stalosan to absorb moisture and sanitise the house. 
  4. Hang boredom busters and pecking blocks to prevent boredom and feather pecking. 
  5. Put a good layer of wood chip in their run, don’t leave them to scratch around on bare earth.
  6. Create an enclosed area and cover roof with tarpaulin, rainshades or large PVC sheets

Brahama Chickens enjoying treats at Flyte So Fancy
Keep your birds occupied and reduce
boredom during the current Bird Flu
restrictions by providing pecking treats.
Creating a simple footbath for Bird Flu prevention
Create a simple footbath using a
tub trug and some Virkon S Disinfectant









Bird Flu - What to use
Keep your henhouse smelling sweet
You can use Stalosan powder throughout the
hen house to keep it sanitised, sweet smelling
and to absorb excessive moisture




Bird Flu - What you need to know

Including Why the restrictions and for how long? And what to look for.
  1. Outbreaks of H5N8 Avian Influenza (Bird Flu) have been confirmed in poultry and wild birds across Europe. No cases yet in the UK
  2. The Exclusion zone remains in place until 6th January 2017 and may be renewed if the danger has not passed.
  3. All poultry keepers must keep their birds housed and under-cover to minimise risk of infection from wild birds.
  4. This is a precautionary action to help prevent outbreaks in the UK.
  5. Increased bio security measures should be in place. This includes disinfecting clothing and footwear before and after entering poultry areas e.g. wear disposable gloves/coveralls and add a footbath outside the run area filled with Virkon S disinfectant
  6. Symptoms to look out for: - Swollen head; neck and throat discolouration; loss of appetite; respiratory distress; diarrhoea. If in doubt, call your vet.
To avoid running out of any poultry essentials over the Christmas period, our last order date for pre-Christmas deliveries is Thursday 22nd December - Order by midday to avoid disappointment. 

Wednesday, 7 December 2016

Avian Flu - Advice for Poultry Keepers

On 6 December 2016 the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) announced an Avian Influenza Prevention Zone to help protect poultry from a highly pathogenic strain of avian flu present in Europe. The zone covers the whole of England and will remain in place for 30 days (until 6 January).  (The Scottish and Welsh governments have also ordered that all poultry and captive birds must be kept indoors).

The zone requires the immediate and compulsory housing of domestic chickens, hens, turkeys and ducks, or where this is not practical, their complete separation from contact with wild birds. For farmed geese, game birds and other captive birds, keepers should take practical steps to keep these birds separate from wild birds.
  
The avian flu disease can spread from bird to bird by direct contact or through contaminated body fluids and faeces. The main risk of infection is likely to come from wild birds.  DEFRA’s prevention zone is a precautionary measure. DON’T PANIC!  We have created a simple checklist to help answer your most common avian flu concerns:- 

1. Keepers are advised to keep poultry inside.


The advice to keep birds ‘inside’ can mean just keeping your birds confined to their run. If you don’t have a run, you could construct a temporary one from old pallets or similar. The main concern is to ensure that wild birds cannot access the run, so any holes in the fence or wire need to be small. 

If you have a garage or shed that the birds can set up a temporary home in, then this is another favoured temporary housing option. The current restriction is in place for 30 days but it may well be extended.  If you would like to purchase a run, we have many sizes and styles to suit a range of budgets and house styles, most of which are in stock.



2. I already have a run but my birds are not ‘inside’


The best way to prevent droppings from wild birds that might have been exposed to avian flu would be to cover your existing run to essentially create a ‘roof’.  The simplest and most cost effective solution is to use a tarpaulin.  Our large PVC Rainshades with bungee fixings are ideal for this.  A more permanent solution could be to cover the roof with polycarbonate sheets or other lightweight roofing materials.

A tarpaulin is cost effective way to protect your birds

3. What if I have to confine my birds to their house?


The current avian flu restriction applies to all poultry and captive birds, yet for some it just not practical to create a run or move birds to an indoor enclosure.  In this instance, birds will need to be confined to their houses or coops.  More frequent cleaning will help to keep the birds clean and the addition of products such as BioDri Sanitising Powder will help alleviate the build up of moisture created by condensation of having birds in a confined space.

Bored birds can begin to get restless and bully each other, to help with this we would recommend items to act as a distraction, such as the boredom buster®  or perhaps a few playful items such as hanging up a cabbage. 

Feeders and Drinkers need to be kept inside, away from contamination, hanging feeders may be an easy option helping to keep the bedding dry and minimise the amount of spilt food in such a confined area.

4. The most effective disinfectant


There are many disinfectants on the market.  Our best advice is to use one that is licensed by DEFRA for Avian FluBi-OO-Cyst and VirKon S Disinfectant are the products that we would recommend using as these can be used for cleaning the house, feeders and drinkers and for creating a simple foot bath.

A disinfectant footbath can be anything from washing up bowl to a tub trug, filled with water and disinfectant that can be walked through by all of the family on entering the poultry area.  The Virkon S Disinfectant liquid is probably the most cost effective product as once made up, it can be reused.  Protective and disposable gloves and masks are a practical consideration when handling and cleaning your birds.




In summary; no free ranging | prevent access by wild birds and their droppings | cover your runs | bring feeders and drinkers inside | more frequent cleaning | foot bath before entering | boredom busters |  no movement of livestock | keep vigilant.

Symptoms of Avian Flu and further guidance can be found here.  https://www.gov.uk/guidance/avian-influenza-bird-flu#about-avian-influenza

If you have any concerns about the health of your poultry, seek prompt advice from your vet.

For poultry supplies delivered to your door visit our Flyte So Fancy website here http://www.flytesofancy.co.uk/ We are doing our very best to stock everything you need to keep your flock happy and healthy until this risk has passed.  If you need guidance about which products to choose, please do give us a call on 01300 345229.


For other useful links and links to our Bird Flu survival supplies, see our other blogs:

On 4 January 2017 DEFRA announced that the Prevention Zones in place across the whole of Great Britain will remain in place until 28 February 2017. With the added advice that Keepers of poultry and captive birds must “house” them away from wild birds. They must maintain their biosecurity and keep a close watch on the health of their birds.

Thursday, 27 October 2016

Preparing Your Poultry Pen for Winter

On Monday it rained. It rained for somewhere close to six hours continuously and by the time it finished our Brahma cockerel (who had refused to go undercover the entire time) looked bedraggled, soggy and unhappy.

After a surprisingly dry September and October, it looks like a Autumn might be finally rearing its sleepy head. The clocks are changing next weekend, the days are a little colder and the clouds look like rain. The perfect time of year to get ahead of the weather and make sure your poultry run is ship shape and ready for anything November can throw at it.
Flyte so Fancy Hardwood Woodchip
Hardwood Woodchip for Poultry Runs
Hardwood Woodchip

The best surface for any chicken run, Flyte so Fancy Hardwood Woodchip, is a sustainable, eco-friendly covering for the floor to your chicken run, to prevent your hens squelching through mud. Containing only hardwoods (no softwoods or bark used as they will quickly mulch), the woodchip sits on top of the mud, creating a sanitary and hygienic run.

Washed clean with the rain (or the garden hose) the hardwood woodchip in your run, with the correct care, should only need changing once a year. See our previous blog on How to get the most out of your Hardwood Woodchip for more detail on the best surface for your poultry run. . 

RainShades for Poultry Runs

Perfect for keeping the rain off your chickens backs, these large removable PVC rainshades for poultry runs, simply clip on to wire of your run. The rainshade will provide a dry area within the run, shedding the water to either side. Or if the sun is shining (unlikely as that may be) will provide a shaded and cool spot for your hens.

Measuring approximately 3ft by 6ft, these easy to use and movable rainshades makes keeping your hens dry during wet weather incredibly easy to do. Dry hens are happy hens.

Hen House Deep Clean

Shorter days and longer nights, mean your hens are going to be spending more time inside their hen house, so before true winter descends, now is the ideal time to give the inside of your hen house a thorough deep clean. Viratec-P Poultry Disinfectant cleans and disinfects in one application. UK DEFRA approved against all notable poultry diseases, it is highly effective against hundreds of strains of bacteria, viruses and fungi.

Perfect for a pre-winter deep clean in your hen house, Viratec-P Poultry Disinfectant, is safe for man and animals alike, keeping your hen house hygienic and healthy for your hens through the long winter months.

Rainshades for Poultry Runs
If you have any questions regarding preparing for winter with your chickens, or your own top tip, leave a comment below, or call us on 01300 345229 to talk to a member of the Flyte so Fancy team.


Thanks for Reading
James


Friday, 7 October 2016

Wheely Good Hen Houses - Mobile Chicken Coops for the Garden

My hens live in their Annie's Coop in the corner of my garden. A garden of which they have full reign and regularly abuse my flower beds, which have never been the same. However there are plenty of chicken owners with plenty of space to keep their hens and who are looking for a mobile chicken coop that they can move around the garden.

Flyte so Fancy have three hen houses on wheels, each uniquely designed to provide movable hen houses for large gardens, orchards and paddocks. 

Dorset Stroller

Not just the nickname of our ambling local gardener, but also the first of our mobile chicken coops, the Dorset Stroller. Designed with its wheels at one end and built in handles at the other, when you are ready to move it to fresh ground, it lifts like a wheelbarrow. Easily moved by just one person, the Dorset Stroller is designed to house 8 birds comfortably and has an external nestbox too.

Dorset Stroller Chicken Coop
Dorset Stroller Hen House
As well as its removable dirt tray and perches, a sliding lift out roof panel gives complete top down access into the coop, making cleaning this hen house quick and simple. With its easy ability to be moved by one person, this hen house is ideally sized for those keeping a flock of hens in a larger garden.  

Dorset Ranger

A highly mobile coop with a difference, the Dorset Ranger comes with an in-built run, to provide both a movable coop with the safety from predators of a fixed run. With its wheels fixed at the back of the house, a clever counter-balance system allows for the hen house to be lifted from the opposite end the run and be wheeled to pastures new

Flyte so Fancy Dorset Ranger
Dorset Ranger 10 Hen House
An external nestbox provides plenty of room in the coop and the Dorset Ranger comes in two sizes for flocks of either 6 or 10. The clever sliding roof allows complete access into the coop, making cleaning incredibly simple. The integral run is made from inch by half inch galvanised weldmesh stapled onto thick timber framing. The Dorset Ranger is ideal for people looking to move a flock of hens to fresh grass around their garden, while keeping them enclosed and not necessary giving them full reign of the flower beds. 

Handy 15

For those with a large flock of hens looking for a mobile hen house, the Handy 15 Hen House is just what they need. With wheels located at one end and in built handles at the other, it is a case of lifting the hen house and wheeling it to a fresh patch of grass for your hens. 

With an external nestbox and a removable ply resin roof, access into this spacious coop is easy, and the large front door makes cleaning a cinch. This is a large coop and can be moved by one person, meaning you move the hen house around your garden or paddock with relative ease. 

Handy 15 Hen House by Flyte so Fancy
Handy 15 Hen House
These hen houses on wheels are ideal for people looking for mobile hen houses for gardens, paddocks and orchards. Allowing for hens to be moved to to fresh grassy ground keeps your hens happy and healthy. If you have any questions about our hen houses with wheels, leave a comment below or call us on 01300 345229 to speak to a member of the FSF Team. 


Thanks for Reading
James 

Friday, 23 September 2016

Hen Houses for Larger Flocks

Here at Flyte so Fancy we have built hen houses for small flocks. We've designed and built  hen houses for half a dozen hens and the full dozen. We've made houses suitable for a couple of ducks on the pond and we've made a Floating Duck Lodge suitable for a community of eight ducks to float in leisure.

What happens though when you look around and the five hens you started with has suddenly morphed into a flock of fifteen or more and your wondering where to keep them? The answer is of course a bigger hen house and Flyte so Fancy have a range of larger hen houses, with unique features, that make keeping a large flock of hens a stylish yet easy proposition.

The Handy 15 Hen House

A large, practical house, the Handy 15 Hen House comes with built in handles and wheels to make it easy to move. Built with room to house fifteen hens, the external nest box provides plenty of room to roost on its full length perches. Double ventilation louvres keeps the inside of the hen house light and breezy and the removable resin-coated board roof and the large front door make access and cleaning quick and simple.

Hen Houses for Large Flocks of Chickens
Handy 15 Hen House
A functional, mobile coop, this larger hen house has a floor space of approximately 5ft by 3ft is ideal for people with a large paddock or field and looking to move their hens to fresh pastures.

The Maggie's 24 Hen House

Our most popular hen houses's big sister, the Maggie's 24 Hen House is a large traditional style chicken house with plenty of room for approximately twenty four laying hens. With its external nest box the floor space for perching inside this hen house is approximately 5ft by 4ft. The Maggie's 24 Hen House has raked perches inside to provide plenty of sleeping space for larger flocks of chickens.

Flyte so Fancy Timber Hen Houses
Maggie's 24 Hen House
A larger hen house, the Maggie's 24 has several features to make it easy to maintain. A removable dirt tray and large back door make cleaning easy, with plenty of access into the coop. Should you feel like really getting stuck in, the removable nest box opens up a complete side of the hen house, allowing unlimited access. The Maggie's 24 Hen House is ideal for back gardens where the passion for poultry has gotten a little out of hand.

The Granary 6ft Hen House

A large, grand hen house with space for up to thirty hens to stretch their wings in luxury. Standing high upon its imperious staddle stones, the Granary 6ft Hen House is a mansion for the largest of back garden flocks. With three internal perches and an external nest box, the floor space measures approximately 6ft wide by 4ft deep.

Flyte so Fancy Hen Houses
6ft Granary Hen House
A large hen house with a rustic charm, the Granary is big enough to hold the largest of flocks and is ideal for when you realise you know have 20 more hens than you ever thought about keeping to begin with.

If you have any questions about our larger hen houses for larger flocks of birds, you can leave a comment below, or call us on 01300 345229 to talk to a member of the FSF Team.

Thanks for Reading
James