Birds For Mounting

Many people are not aware that MacFarlane Pheasants, Inc. provides birds for taxidermists! Taxidermists mount birds for hunting enthusiasts. They also enter their work in competitions. Preservation of the birds is as either a table or wall mount, depending on the requests of the buyer. Anyone can visit our website called birds4mounting.com to get pricing and view photographs of the very important wings or tail feathers. We sell a variety of bird grades to meet the needs of the taxidermist. 

We sell Hens, Hungarian Partridges, Chukar Partridges, and Chukar Redleg Partridges in Grade 1 quality, only. Ringneck Cocks are sold in five different grades. Read on to get descriptions of each Ringneck grade. 

Competition

Have smooth feathers throughout.

Grade 1+

Have almost competition grade, small flaw in wing or tail, but still better than grade 1.

Grade 1

Have minimum chips on the inside of tail feathers and tips of the wings and are excellent for flying mounts. 

Grade 2

May have chips on outside of the tail feathers and wing tips. They might have a broken wing feather or two and are best suited for standing mounts. 

Grade 3

Have larger chips on tail feather and chips as large as a quarter. They may have several broken wing feather and are good for the beginner.

Please visit birds4mounting.com to get pricing and other valuable information.

Birds For Mounting

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Birds For Mounting

Gro-gel Helps Newborn Chicks

Gro-gel is a super hydrating gel for newborn chicks. In addition to hydration, it is filled with nutrients and good bacteria. The Gro-gel we purchase comes in a powder and we add water to the amount we need and mix it until it is gel-like. Then, we place a heaping spoonful onto a small paper plate.

At MacFarlane Pheasant Farm, Inc. we are currently using Gro-gel in two places on the farm. It is used with White Pheasant chicks in the Hen Barn and with Hungarian Partridges. In both areas, we use Geo-gel for about 24 hours beginning on the second or third day of a chick’s life. We have found that waiting a couple days to let chicks, in both departments, recover from the hard work of peeping out of the eggs and being transported and handled, results in the best outcome.

The Gro-gel is set out with a little feed on a small paper plate in both situations. The use of Gro-gel is easier to monitor with Hungarian Partridges and White Pheasants because the chicks are kept in a more restricted area and watched very carefully to assure that the Gro-gel is positively affecting the health of the chicks.

Heidi at h.welch@pheasant.com and Trudy at  t.deremer@pheasant.com both have experience with Gro-gel and would be good contacts for folks interested in learning more about the benefits of this product.

grogel

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gro-gel Helps Newborn Chicks

Spring Time is Hatching Time on the Farm!

After the other night’s snow, I was reminded it’s not quite spring in Wisconsin! But we are preparing for our spring pheasant and partridge hatches ,because it is almost here!  Our first chicks will be available April 2017. We hatch 500,000 chicks a year so we need to prepare. We have a master schedule to assist us in preparation, but also to keep you informed about availability of chicks. Barn preparation is an important step in preparing for spring hatching time.

Barn Preparation

  • Pressure wash and disinfect the barn.
  • Put down shavings and prepare brooders.
  • Set up feed flats and troughs for new chicks.
  • Prepare feed system for transition at three weeks.
  • Set up nipple waterers for new chicks.
  • Prepare the Plasson bell waterer for the three week transition.
  • Fog the barn the day before the new chicks arrive.

We have many chicks that leave our farm at a day old. The first chicks will be ready at the beginning of April. If you haven’t received our chick catalog yet, please contact us and we will send one out. Our chicks are known for their quality genetics and great livability. And in addition to a free rearing guide, our support team supplies service with every sale of partridge and pheasant chicks. We look forward to talking to you at MacFarlane Pheasants, Inc.

Spring Time is Hatching Time on the Farm

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spring Time is Hatching Time on the Farm!

Heidi Welch Loves Brand New Chicks

Heidi Welch is currently the Partridge Manager at MacFarlane Pheasants Inc., but she has played many other roles, on our farm, in the three years she has worked here. She started as the Assistant Manager for Hungarian Partridges at the beginning of the chick season in 2014. When that season wound down, she was transferred to the Hen Barn where she learned about other functions on the farm, including artificial insemination and egg and data collection.

When the next chick season started, Heidi returned to the brooder crew as Partridge Manager. Heidi, like most employees on the farm, has helped in other departments, when needed. This includes catching birds, helping in the hatchery, helping in the office, and working at different locations. After all that, she has still found time to train new employees and learn to run the different equipment available on the farm.

When I asked Heidi what a typical day on the farm is like, she said, “busy.” Her day begins with preparing the crew for the day’s work. After plans are made and discussions completed, the crew splits off to do the morning chores. The morning chores in brooder barns are very thorough and include cleaning plassons, feeding chicks, checking temperature and fan controls and making sure everything is properly working and that the birds look comfortable.

During the day, Heidi can be found setting up a room, cleaning out a room, pressure washing, feed vacuuming, or top dressing a room. The afternoon is spent making sure everything is running properly and chicks are all in good shape before everyone leaves! When I asked Heidi what the favorite part of her day was, she responded, “I don’t know if I have a favorite part of the day, but I do enjoy seeing a fresh clean room, all set up and ready for brand new chicks to be placed there.”

Heidi finds the middle to end of chick season very rewarding. It is the busiest time in the season when all the barns are full. “We can get a little stressed,” she says, “but if you take a step back , you can see how well we have done keeping the chicks healthy and seeing how the season’s improvements will help the farm succeed.”

Heidi attended UW Platteville for one year before deciding she was ready to go to work and get on-the-job experience. She enjoys being a part of MacFarlane Pheasants, being busy, and learning new things. Her spare time for the past eight years has been spent doing dog sitting and grooming. She also enjoys spending time with her daughter, traveling, fishing, cooking, and photography. Heidi is a very diverse and busy person!

It is easy to hear, when talking to Heidi, that she loves her work at MacFarlane Pheasants. She ended our interview by adding that  she enjoys “working with a great team of employees, who all come together and work hard for great success.” Thank you Heidi for your great attitude and hard work!

View More: http://lisakarrphotography.pass.us/2015-06-13-heidi-welch-color

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Heidi Welch Loves Brand New Chicks

MacFarlane Pheasants, Inc. Renews Lease on 19 Acres in South Dakota

We currently lease 19 acres of  flight pens, in Miller, South Dakota. You can read about flight pens on our blog site. If you do, you will realize that it requires both time and money to build pens. An advantage to the property we lease is that the flight pens were there when we rented the land. Miller is a proud and beautiful agricultural community where we began raising 7 week old pheasants to maturity, last year.

The birds are shipped to South Dakota from our Janesville, Wisconsin farm. This satellite farm proved to be very productive and we recently renewed our lease for five years. The farm is an excellent location for birds that we can ship into Canada, if needed.

We raised 35,000 birds in South Dakota, last year, and expect to raise the same number this coming year. An employee lives on site and takes care of the birds all summer. We hire local help when needed and in the fall, we send a crew out to the farm to catch and deliver the mature pheasants.

The decision to extend our lease in South Dakota is a sound business decision that provides advantages for our customers. Partnerships with other communities in North America allow us to provide greater economic security for both parties. Please contact Chris at chris@pheasant.com if you have questions about our satellite farm in South Dakota.

MacFarlane Pheasants, Inc. Renews Lease on 19 Acres in South Dakota

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MacFarlane Pheasants, Inc. Renews Lease on 19 Acres in South Dakota

Free Flight Pen Construction Manual

Our managers and employees at MacFarlane Pheasants are highly trained and experienced with all facets of pheasants care. They all contribute information, used by our customers, to care for game birds they purchase for their own game bird operations. This information comes to you in the form of manuals and being available to answer questions if you contact us.

Our latest manual is called, The Complete Flight Pen Construction Manual. You can learn how to choose and prepare your site, how to build the pens, build the gates and where to find the products. Diagrams of the parts needed to build your pens and specific instructions about how to decide on the size are included. The instructions are very specific, but if you have questions, just give us a call. We are a dealer for some of the products you might need, but we have also provided, in our manual, phone numbers and emails of vendors who deal with the products you will need to build your flight pen.

Other manuals you might like to download are listed below. These are all free and filled with tips, techniques and explanations about why certain procedures are necessary.

Set up and Care for Adult Birds Manual contains lots of information about how to get ready for a delivery and how to care for your birds after you get them.

The Inside Guide to Pheasant Rearing offers insight into what it takes to run a successful game bird farm.

Raising Tips  is a guide we developed to explain how to prep for deliveries and raise your pheasants.

We encourage you to download these manuals and take advantage of the experiences and knowledge our employees have to share with you. Feel free to call us at 608-757-7881 or contact us on our website.

Free Flight Pen Construction Manual

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Free Flight Pen Construction Manual

Keeping Our Focus on Game Birds!

We made a business decision at MacFarlane Pheasants Inc. for this spring. We have 200 acres of farm land that we have been using for the last two years to grow corn, beans, and wheat. Prior to that, we rented out this land for 12 years.

Our big decision for the future is that our time must be prioritized, to focus on our game bird business. Planting and harvesting fields coincides pretty closely to our busiest pheasant times. In addition to that problem, the high cost of planters and combines can’t come close to justifying having this equipment to work 200 acres! So, with that in mind, we decided to return to our prior arrangement and rent out this land to a local farmer.

There are so many exciting game bird responsibilities, every day, that our time is best spent on maintaining and growing our pheasant business. As our customer base grows, this just makes good sense.

We are busy getting all our buildings in shape for spring. Chick orders are coming in like crazy and that is definitely keeping us busy as we prepare to fill those orders, beginning in April.

We are building a new hen barn because our white pheasant business is growing and growing! Getting that barn ready to produce more white pheasant chicks requires an increased focus on this aspect of our business.

We raised 35,000 birds last year in South Dakota, on a satellite farm. We just renewed that lease and expect to raise another 35,000 pheasants this year, on that farm. Our employees are busy here, there, and everywhere!

We are also raising birds in Alberta, Canada and this is another critical use of our time.

We’ll be sharing more details about our operations in South Dakota and Canada in the near future, so watch for those posts. We also plan to share the progress on our new hen barn, so that is another post to watch for in the new future.

Keeping Our Focus on Game Birds!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Keeping Our Focus on Game Birds!

We’re Building a New Hen Barn!

We have been busy planning a second Hen Barn because our food products’ customers can’t get enough of our tasty, nutritious pheasant. Our White Pheasants are raised for our food division. Grocery store orders, restaurants who serve pheasant and our retail business are growing, so the bottom line is we need to raise more pheasants for our food division!

  • Our existing barn was built in the 1980’s.
  • Five years ago, we renovated this barn, increasing our capacity from 1000 to 2000 laying hens.
  • Now we need more space, so a new barn is being built and it will be sized to handle 1000 more laying hens, with room for expansion.
  • Certified Wick builders are building an Agricultural Pole building as our new barn.
  • Production birds bred in this barn will not hit the shelves as dressed pheasants until Thanksgiving 2017.
  • Planning for expansion is definitely not a speedy process.
  • Careful planning for our new barn and for expanded production is a long process but the benefit to our customers makes our investment well worth it.

Though we name the building our Hen Barn, we have to have some males to make the magic happen! The new barn will have 4 rooms including two male rooms, a hen room, and a brooding room. Eggs are sent to be hatched in our hatchery. We expect 3000 laying hens to produce 12,000 eggs per week. That will translate into lots of white pheasants for our food division and, ultimately, our customers.

This project has taken a great deal of planning and financial investment and it will take time before the new facility is up and running, but what a great problem to have. We have customers who are so happy with our pheasant meat products that they are asking for more! Watch our blog for pictures of our new barn as it moves toward completion.

We’re Building a New Hen Barn!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We’re Building a New Hen Barn!

Dressed Bird Business Continues to Expand

Our Food Division at MacFarlane Pheasants has expanded over the past year. New opportunities became possible after we became USDA certified in 2015. This verification was a long process, but resulted in our ability to sell our pheasant products all over the world!

In addition to sales all over the United States, through our distributors, Harris Teeter, Burris Logistics, and Lipari Foods, we export to Canada and Japan. Recently, we sent pheasant product samples to Qatar, in the Middle East, and we hope they will love our dressed pheasant and decide to place an order. We are always looking for new international sources for our dressed birds. We are delighted that our Made in America pheasant food products are being exported to other countries.

The bulk of our dressed birds, in the United States, go through our major distributors. Our pheasant is then distributed to grocery stores and restaurants all over the country. Our products are reaching Sprouts in the west and southwest, and Whole Foods all over the United States.

Sales have been so great in the last year that we made a major decision to build a new hen barn for White Pheasants. We expect our barn to be completed by this spring. Watch for an article with pictures about this project at www.gamebirdexpert.com.

Rachel Atherton at r.atherton@pheasant.com works with our distributors all over the world and “expansion” of our dressed bird business is a priority in her job. Growth in each of our divisions is one of the many reasons MacFarlane Pheasants, Inc. has been in business for 87 years.

Dressed Bird Business Continues to Expand

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dressed Bird Business Continues to Expand

Celebrate the Reactivation of Game Bird Forum!

Celebrate the Reactivation of Game Bird Forum!

 

GameBirdForum.com has been reactivated. Due to so much interest in the game bird industry we are up and running again for 2017! It is your “go to” site for asking questions and getting answers from other game bird experts.

We will still answer questions you leave on our Facebook page or on our contact form but the Game Bird Forum is a special forum where anyone in the industry, from anywhere in the world, can ask questions and get answers. Wisconsin is a completely different environment than other locations. Think of how much you can learn from interacting with other game bird folks who know about your specific locale!

We are excited to give folks in the game bird industry a chance to talk to each other. We currently have 4 categories listed on the site.

  1. Breeding, Incubation, and Hatching
  2. Brooding
  3. Feed, Health Care, and Misc.
  4. Rearing Outdoors

Sample Question and Answer

incubating grey partridge eggs

My grey partridge eggs have taken 26 days to hatch. I could blame this on my incubator, but I did put sixty eggs under broodies and these have taken just as long. Why is this I wonder? We have had terrible rain storms over the last three weeks and the temperature is well below average. I was hoping to raise the chicks using broodies, since they are much better parents when released, but my hens are buff orpingtons and are just too clumsy. I even had one hen decide the chicks would make a good meal. A terrible return from 138 eggs, just 39 managed to make the first day. I think day olds are the way forward.

Re: incubating grey partridge eggs

Usually Grey partridge have very good hatching rates. They should hatch at about 24 days, so 26 days isn’t really that bad. How old were the eggs when you put them into the incubator? What was the temperature you were running your incubator at? This may have an effect because Grey Partridge have a BETTER hatch rate when held for 14 days or more, than when they are just lain. I have set partridge eggs that were 30 days old and had a 90% hatch rate. Incubator run at 99 degrees Fahrenheit and 51% humidity. It’s always a good idea to have a mercury thermometer that stays inside the incubator to double check the temperature. A lot can happen in that 24 day period.

This is meant to be YOUR forum so feel free to talk to us about topics that you want to see. We only shared one question and answer, so be sure to visit GameBirdForum.com to read the many questions and answers that have already posted or to ask and answer a question. Let your inner expert out!

 

 

 

Celebrate the Reactivation of Game Bird Forum!