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Our Chelsea Green Authors : Harvey Ussery

Harvey Ussery

Harvey Ussery has been developing his whole-systems poultry husbandry for decades and has been writing about chickens and other fowl for Backyard Poultry since the inception of the magazine in early 2006. He has also written numerous articles for Mother Earth News and Countryside & Small Stock Journal, and has published in American Pastured Poultry Producers Association's newsletter, Grit!, over the years. Ussery has presented at national and local events on poultry, homesteading, and energy and sustainability issues, and maintains a highly informative website, TheModernHomestead.US. He lives with his wife, Ellen, in Virginia.

    Harvey's Upcoming Events

    • Harvey Ussery at Heritage Harvest Festival
      Heritage Harvest Festival, Monticello , Charlottesville VA
      September 13, 2014, 10:30 am

      The annual Heritage Harvest Festival, sponsored at Thomas Jefferson’s estate, Monticello, by Southern Exposure Seed Exchange, just gets better and better each year—lots of vendors and dozens of interesting speakers and topics. Copies of my book The Small-Scale Poultry Flock (Chelsea Green, 2011) will be on sale, with several book signings on the schedule. I will give three presentations: The Small-Scale Poultry Flock: An All-Natural Approach to Raising Chickens and Other Fowl for Home and Market Growers My signature presentation on holistic poultry husbandry in the sustainable homestead. Appropriate for beginners and more experienced flocksters alike. The Sustainable Home Flock A discussion of three foundations of a more holistic homestead flock independent of outside purchases: (1) Breed choice, with a discussion of my flock of Icelandic chickens as my ideal homestead breed. (2) Feeding as much as possible from home resources. (3) Breeding our own improved stock using techniques that maximize genetic diversity and avoid inbreeding depression. Trash to Treasure: Bioconversion of Organic “Wastes” into Resources We will look at some fascinating examples of “trash to treasure,” such as Growing Power’s turning 10,000 tons of food residuals a year in the Milwaukee/Chicago area into soil fertility for their greenhouses; or Vermont Compost’s use of flocks of hundreds of layers to work compost while feeding from the heaps and producing thousands of dozens of eggs as an additional income stream—entirely without purchased feeds. Bioconversion of organic wastes goes far beyond Sir Albert Howard’s classic compost heap, and this talk will explore some of the possibilities at the home and farm scale.

    Harvey's Books

    The Small-Scale Poultry Flock

    An All-Natural Approach to Raising Chickens and Other Fowl for Home and Market Growers

    With information on building soil fertility, replacing purchased feed, and working with poultry in the garden.

    The most comprehensive guide to date on raising organic poultry for the backyard farmer, homesteader, and professional grower. Harvey Ussery offers a comprehensive and practical whole-systems, integrative approach to animal husbandry, including growing your own feed, brooding at home, and poultry as weed managers in the garden.


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