Farm Life

Discussion in 'Buck Knives' started by David Martin, Apr 24, 2016.

  1. David Martin

    David Martin Moderator Moderator Gold Member

    Apr 7, 2008
    I processed a few old layers today. They were 3 years old and played out in laying. I used Buck's folding, filleting knife, Tru-blue.
    It has a 5 1/2" blade with 425m steel. I liked it. The handle is grippy and the blade holds a good edge. I'll use it again as I have a few more old hens that don't meet economics to carry through the winter. DM
    KarlG, Xr6x, Hawkeye5 and 4 others like this.


    Aug 14, 2006
    Nice David,I always look forward to your real world use and evaluation of knives,those old hens might have dulled a lesser blade quick lol.keep it coming!
    Xr6x, Hawkeye5 and jbmonkey like this.
  3. David Martin

    David Martin Moderator Moderator Gold Member

    Apr 7, 2008
    When processing them I try to not cut thru the joint but maybe I am a little off . On the ribs I do cut thru. I use my axe on the bones mostly. DM
  4. David Martin

    David Martin Moderator Moderator Gold Member

    Apr 7, 2008
    Here are the last of our Tetra layers. These being 3 yrs. old are not laying enough to merit feeding them thru another winter.
    This model 539 is well suited for this type work, with a 5 1/2" flat ground blade of 425m steel and a generous, comfortable handle. It helps processing go smoothly. We have 38* here and snow is in our forecast & it's drizzling now. So, I was extra glad to get this done without a hitch. I think this model could process 5 chickens before needing some touch up on a stone. Happy Thanksgiving. DM
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2019
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  5. Hawkeye5

    Hawkeye5 Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 6, 2006
    Looking good David.Hope you had a Happy Thanksgiving!
  6. David Martin

    David Martin Moderator Moderator Gold Member

    Apr 7, 2008
  7. jbmonkey

    jbmonkey Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Jun 9, 2011
    good info David, thank you. 3yr old normally stop laying as much or is it hit and miss?

    I spent Thanksgiving in north florida at wifes family farm. new couple calves......


    interesting as this bull calf isnt black like its parents. wifes uncle has black Angus cows but somehow not pure as this one is an odd shade of brown.

    other calf was about a day old we couldnt get close enough as mom cow was very agitated us being we stayed on the road in and I took a pic on cellphone zoomed as much as possible. 20191128_154034.jpg
    if ya look at the black little pile laying down to the left of the mom, that's the calf. she has her/him, not sure which, squirreled away in the corner of the field.
    Lesknife likes this.
  8. David Martin

    David Martin Moderator Moderator Gold Member

    Apr 7, 2008
    jbmonk, "stop laying as much". Yes. A laid out layer, is a hen that does still lay eggs but has reached the age where she is not laying 4-5 eggs a week. Plus, she is still eating her normal amount of feed. A two fold reason, she should be eliminated. She is costing you more than she is making. They should be observed closely, are they having normal body functions? Is she fully feathered and moving about alert? If not separate her and look for a day you have some time. Of these last 5 hens only 2 were still
    laying. This I verified during processing. Their quality of life was such that they were uncomfortable digesting food. A poor color liver is sign you made the right call. DM
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  9. Old Biker

    Old Biker

    Sep 25, 2016
    David you are a lot more tolerant of those hens, than my Dad was when I was growing up. The hens got one laying season. Then they were replaced by a new crop of pullets, and they were off to the chopping block.

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  10. David Martin

    David Martin Moderator Moderator Gold Member

    Apr 7, 2008
    Ha- ha. That's the way my Dad was too. Yet, there is a down side to that management style and I'll explain:
    Feed stores usually order and get chicks / pullets in the last week of Feb. or the 1st week of March. It takes 6 mos. of feeding to get the first egg and those will be a peewee. Then in 2 weeks, -- mediums. You can't sell any of those as customers like the large
    and extra large. They really like jumbos. By the time you start seeing that grade egg it is late Sept. or early Oct.. Now, they are going into molt and lot laying much. Thus, your first laying season is over.
    A couple different ways we handle this: 1) we order chicks the first week of Jan. and fix them a brooder house indoors. Thus, we start seeing eggs in June. Those go in the freezer, fed to our dogs, we eat them or boil them for lunch or give them away. By July we can sell the larger eggs.
    2) Then we don't allow them to molt until March as we hang a light inside their house during winter for warmth and to keep them laying. Then as daylight increasing in March / early April we allow them a natural molt. Thus, they pull out of it quicker. Then we
    get another full summer laying. By the end of the third summer they are slowing down and we'll move to culling and have another
    flock of hens over 6 mos. old. This way we don't loose customers. At this month people are calling around as everyone else's hens
    are in molt but ours are still laying. Hope this sheds some light on management. Biker, it is possible they were wanting some chickens for the freezer that were not tough? And some eggs along the way. DM
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2019
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  11. David Martin

    David Martin Moderator Moderator Gold Member

    Apr 7, 2008
    @jbmonkey , I think that calf's coat will change in color toward the black Angus as it grows a few months. Perhaps near weening at 6 mos.. DM
    jbmonkey likes this.
  12. skylercstevens

    skylercstevens Basic Member Basic Member

    Aug 7, 2013
    Bloefield, jmh33, jbmonkey and 3 others like this.
  13. David Martin

    David Martin Moderator Moderator Gold Member

    Apr 7, 2008
    Way to go. Who trapped him? I've heard beaver are good table fare.? DM
  14. Lesknife

    Lesknife Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Mar 31, 2018
    I haven’t had one or examined one personally but I’ve heard that beaver tail makes a really nice knife sheath. Some I’ve seen pictures of were pricey!

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