Busy days spent gardening… enjoying the excellent weather and working on improving our food security by trying to grow more of our produce. The weather has been especially great, with lovely warm days, inter spaced between cooler days with a little light rain.
I contacted a local chicken producer and ordered a dozen Australorp chicks when they hatch from the incubator. They are a little more expensive then I would have liked to pay (actually, they are twice the going rate), yet they are local… and I would like to support them. This deadline will help to light a spark under me (I hope), meaning I have to commit to the endeavor. It is pretty daunting… trying to start whatever it is I am doing. I keep experiencing moments of self-doubt and worry, which is normal. I am worried that I will fail, or that I will end up worse off for trying this… which is silly. Worse thing that could happen (or so I choose to believe it to be the worst) is that all the chicks die due to some accident or illness. This isn’t that serious a problem for me (for the chicks, it is a major problem). I also worry, what if I can’t sell any? To which I answer – then I have a freezer full of high quality, pasture raised, chicken. I am not 100% sure if what I am doing counts as a business, and what do I have to do about this? I have read information on the Australian Tax office website and it is pretty confusing. It seems to come under the Hobby category, yet I am not 100% sure. It states that I should talk to a tax lawyer about all the concerns, yet I will have to put that off till later as I can’t afford this at the moment. I will have to continue my internal debate as to what I am doing for another day.
I have also talked to my neighbor about the use of his land for raising chickens. I told him that I want to raise the chickens in a cage type structure, and he was more than OK with it. He actually gave me some advice on it, and took me to see his chickens so that I could see how he set up his chicken run. He advised me to be sure that I build it out of strong wire, as there are Quolls in the area. Quolls are a Carnivorous Marsupials that live in many parts of Tasmania. While cute, they have the capacity to destroy entire population of a chicken coop in a night. My neighbor told me that before he had properly fenced his chickens, a Quoll entered their coop and killed every chicken. This was welcome information, as my plan had included very light fabric mesh to protect against birds… I would therefore need to reconsider that idea. My neighbor also advised that I should ensure that I have very closely woven wire at the bottom section of the cage walls. His cat has a tendency to stick it’s paw though the wire to kill young chickens when their curiosity gets the better of them and they come to see what the cat doing.