Category: Breeds

Permaculture chickens – 6 practical lessons from the evolution of chickens

One of the fundamentals of permaculture design is to observe, understand and work with natural ecosystems.  It sounds simple enough to apply permaculture principles to chicken keeping. Can’t we just observe wild chickens in their natural environment? The problem is, modern domesticated chickens don’t exist in the wild. Junglefowl are the immediate ancestor of chickens, however it’s not that simple. Modern chickens were domesticated more than 8,000 years ago and […]

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How to Set Up and Maintain Your Own Flock of Chickens

The idea of keeping chickens at home is one that appeals to a growing number of people around the world. It’s not just that you’ll get “free” eggs and chicken meat, it’s also that the produce from the chickens you keep is known to be free from all the unsavoury “stuff” (including harmful antibiotics and synthetic colouring) commercial chicken eggs and poultry are known to contain. But if you’re going […]

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Permaculture for Pastoralists in the Jordan Valley – Part I

Awassi sheep ready to go to market (and random standards inspector) I’ve been to the Greening the Desert “Sequel” site three times now. Once was in 2011 when we were at the IPC in Jordan. Once was in 2012 when I went there to take an internship with Geoff and Nadia. This year I was able to go back there to teach a PDC myself. So I’ve seen some of […]

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Ducks in a Permaculture System (Scotland)

by James Reid, PRI Tap o’ Noth You don’t have a slug problem, you have a duck deficiency. — Bill Mollison It was reading the above quote that made us want to acquire some ducks here at PRI Tap o’ Noth in North East Scotland. The idea of using the natural foraging instinct of the duck to rid our kitchen garden of slugs and snails, by encouraging them to browse […]

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Urban Garden Demonstration Update (New Zealand)

by Kay Baxter, PRI New Zealand (Koanga Institute) This is an update on our urban permaculture garden experiment which integrates the best ideas from our Permaculture Design Course students into a working urban garden here in our North Island, New Zealand temperate climate. Our end product includes rabbits, chickens, a 36 sq m biointensive garden, 2 vines, 19 fruit trees, 15 berry bushes, 1 olive and 3 nut trees. We […]

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Ducks in Backyard Permaculture (Alaska)

Here in the northernmost tip of North America’s temperate rainforest, Alaska’s infamous cold meets some of the wettest weather in the world. Our hometown of Cordova, Alaska, receives an average of 160 inches of precipitation per year — more than 13 feet of water. In addition to the intense rainfall, we also see some very cool summer temperatures, with an average high of 55 degrees Fahrenheit (13°C). As you might […]

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Of Mice and Men and Chooks

Some of the motley chook collective A good mate of mine described the chook (chicken) collective here as a “motley collection”. I’m unsure whether this was a compliment and didn’t care to ask. Different breeds of chooks are really valuable though as they all lay eggs during different times of the year. So, with a mixed batch of 14 chooks there is probably only about 1 week every year when […]

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Geoff Lawton’s Zaytuna Farm Video Tour – Part II

Last year I took some time out to make a Zaytuna Farm Video Tour for you all (embedded here, with lots of photos and text). The positive comments, both on our site and on YouTube, along with additional questions (see comments below this post), encouraged us to make another! This new video, above, shot 11-12 months after the original video, is twice as long and covers several aspects of the […]

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A Complete Guide to Using Slugs as a Resource with Indian Runner Ducks

This article is for all those people out there who are under regular attack from the cursed slug. If you live in Great Britain or North Wales like I do, you know all to well about these little beasts. 2012 was a year of slug plagues for most gardeners in the UK due to the wet and humid weather which provided ideal breeding conditions. And with climate change these wet, […]

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Integrating Livestock in the Food Forest

Cattle grazing under alder in silvopasture system at Las Canadas, Huatusco, Mexico Integrating livestock seems to be the best way to have a larger-scale food forest (anything over one hectare or a couple of acres). If done properly, livestock integration can greatly reduce labor and fossil fuel needs. It can create the conditions for happy and healthy livestock. Done poorly, it can ruin soils and destroy crops. Here are a […]

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VEG Design Solutions, Part One: the Chicken/Fox Filter

by Dan Palmer, Very Edible Gardens When designing edible gardens, a site-specific problem will often crop up. One of the most enjoyable aspects of permaculture design for us is devising site-specific solutions to those problems. In this short series we give four examples, all bona fide VEG originals, with a new one each month for the next four months. Part One – the Chook/Fox Filter The Site-Specific Design Problem In […]

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Animal Systems at HEPA, Vietnam

At SPERI’s Human Ecology Project Area we have a number of Farmer Field Schools (HEPA FFS) which are host to students from a variety of indigenous minority groups from Vietnam and Laos. The students are here to learn about eco-farming and permaculture whilst respecting traditional laws and customs. The main focus of the farms isn’t to be productive, but rather to provide an environment where the students can experiment with […]

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