Does a pet chicken sound like a good idea to you? Picking fresh laid eggs in soothing shades of brown, blue and green? Are you looking for another way to escape out to your backyard oasis on a daily basis? Backyard chicken may be a perfect option for you. But, before you jump in, let's take a good look at what's involved so you make a wise, healthy choice for you and your family.
According to a United States Department of Agriculture study, there is a slow growing acceptance of backyard chicken keeping. The study done in four U.S. metro areas (Denver, Los Angeles, Miami, and New York City ) found that .8% of the population currently owned chickens, but nearly 4 percent of households without chickens planned to have chickens within the next 5 years.
Backyard chicken raisers love their chickens. Many view them as pets. Special precautions need to be taken, however, to avoid getting sick from them and their eggs. Recently the CDC issued a warning and guidelines after noticing an uptick in salmonella cases related to backyard chicken eggs. They also released specific recommendations to prevent the infection.
The United States Department of Agriculture is in charge of biosecurity for poultry and other birdkeeping in an effort to prevent an outbreak of avian flu or other exotic diseases. Chicken keepers should stay aware of updates from them as well.
I was curious about what the allure of backyard chicken keeping is and what exactly it involves. So I sat down with a local mom who explained in great detail her love of backyard chicken keeping and what is involved with it.
Take a look:
Taking on any pet is a responsibility that should be carefully evaluated before making the commitment. Hopefully Nancy's honest discussion of what is entailed in keeping chickens as pets and harvesting their eggs will help you decide if this is a nature activity for you. If you are already a backyard chicken keeper, maybe you picked up a few new tips? Either way, if this is an activity for you, I hope that you handle and care for the chickens, and their eggs, safely for the health of you and your family.
The Nature Nurse™ blends the art of caring with the healing power of nature. All media content is meant for educational purposes only and is not medical advice. The Nature Nurse™ does not diagnose nor treat diseases. Always collaborate with your health care providers on your health and wellness plan.
Happy Shark Week!
From July 22-July 29, 2018 sharks will not just dominate the oceans, they will dominate social media. Fascination with these animals never seems to wane. As a species, they are highly misunderstood.
This week, The Nature Nurse, attempts to inspire, educate and engage people to see these magnificent, important animals in a new way. We interviewed Megalodon shark tooth expert, Elliot Weston. Watch the interview and post a comment on the youtube video or the comments section below on this blog by Noon, July 29, 2018 and you will be entered to win a Megalodon Tooth. (Official Contest Rules Below).
Win this Megalodon Tooth below:
Watch this video interview and post a comment below it to enter: (more contest details below)
1. All Youtube Community Guidelines Apply.
2. Contest is FREE to enter, simply watch the interview and post a comment below The Nature Nurse Megalodon Shark Tooth video on youtube with Elliot Weston (Video) or below in this blogs comments section.
3. Must be 18 or older to enter, and have a mailing address in the Continental United States.
4. One winner will be randomly selected to win a Megalodon Shark Tooth fossil on July 29, 2018 after 12 noon. The winner will be contacted via a reply on their comment on the video post. Winner will have one week (from the time of winning notification) to reply and contact The Nature Nurse, so the tooth can be mailed, via the contact box on The Nature Nurse website. If they do not reply and share their email and postal mailing address, a new winner will be selected.
5. One comment entry per person.
6. No data will be collected in this contest from entrants.
Wounded Veterans are doing it.
Kids, even those with autism, are doing it.
People living with paralysis are doing it.
Now, The Nature Nurse™, is on a mission to invite nurses to do it. Surf.
Being on, in, near or under water has been shown to have powerful healing benefits. (1) Surfing allows us to experience all four of these water engagement methods in one sport.
Veterans report that surfing facilitates a sense of respite from post-traumatic stress disorder (2) If surfing can help relieve stress in veterans, imagine what it could do for nurses? Nurses are experiencing high levels of burnout. (3) Could surfing be a tool to help nurses deal with stress too?
I decided to try it out for myself and bring another nurse, Annie, along to see how she would react. I consulted with professional surfer Tony Silvagni, who assured me he could get even me, a middle-aged woman with an old ankle dislocation and fracture injury, standing on a surfboard.
We ventured to Carolina Beach, North Carolina on a hot, sunny Monday-excited and a bit nervous. Tony personally paired us up with surf instructors who had the expertise to get us riding on top of the waves.
Nurse Annie, a former gymnast, was a natural. After just a couple of tries, she was standing on the board and riding it as long as the wave would take her. Our instructors and I chuckled as we watched her do the 'pop up' (the lunge from lying on the board to a standing position). Nurse Annie, rocketed up.
I, on the other hand, took quite a few times to get up, but falling off the board, the way we were taught, made it kind of fun. Then, my instructor, Lenny said, "This is your wave. Start paddling!"
Following his instruction, I paddled and felt the wave scoop me up and carry the board forward as if I had just taken flight. Feeling the momentum of energy around me, I effortlessly rose to a standing position as viewers on the beach cheered. Little did I know I was a source of entertainment for the past half an hour. The thrill was totally worth it! In fact, it lasted well into the next day.
Hear for yourself what Nurse Annie thought about her surfing experience:
Both Nurse Annie and I are excited to continue practicing surfing. Not only as a source of self-care, but potentially so we can help others, even those with medical needs, experience entrainment with the energy of the ocean. We would love other nurses to join us!
Nurses who want to join The Nature Nurse Surf Experience, please contact Susan Allison-Dean at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Berry picking can be fun for the whole family and good for you too! Summer is the season of produce abundance and variety. With the sun at its peak, fruits and vegetables are ripening on vines, just waiting for us to pick them. We won't find a juicier tomato, a crunchier cucumber or a sweeter, plump blueberry than one that we pick ourselves.
Berry season is currently at, or nearing its peak, here in the United States. Blueberries, strawberries, raspberries and blackberries are natures super health food. When they are picked fresh at their peak, they can be as sweet as candy, so kids love them
Here are six tips you may want to consider to make your picking a success:
1. Find berry farms that grow organically. Google is probably the easiest way to find an organic berry farm near you. If you are going to pick, pick the best quality. Strawberries top the Dirty Dozen list of fruits and veggies most laden with pesticides, so it is especially important to try and find those organically grown.
2. Pick enough to freeze for the winter. Frozen berries come in handy all year; pies for Thanksgiving, added into a morning smoothy, or healthy muffins. Think like a squirrel, gather them up and store them in the freezer now while they are at their best.
3. Pick first thing in the morning. Berries ripen when the sun is at its peak so try and get to the farm as early as possible because it can get hot. Standing in the hot sun can leave one dehydrated so bring water as well. Don't forget the sunscreen and a sunhat. If you are bringing elderly people with you, consider bringing a folding chair so they can sit and pick.
4. Take your time, enjoy the zen. Try and go when you are not in a rush. Berry picking can be a mindfulness activity. Finding yourself alone in a row, just focusing on selecting the ripened berries, while the birds chirp nearby, can be very relaxing. Soak it up.
5. Listen for recipe tips. Eventually, you may find yourself next to some other pickers. It is not unusual to end up being privy to some funny conversations. If you're lucky, you may end up near some great cooks who love to chat about how they make the perfect piecrust or jam.
6. Taste some berries, but refrain from gobbling them down. Generally speaking, farmers are thrilled to see the public come and enjoy their hard work. They understand the fruit is very tempting and we may want to sample what we are buying. Keep in mind, though; it took a lot of sweat and investment to grow these crops. Gather your berries, pay for them and then indulge if you want to.
Have fun out there! If you do go, take a picture and tag me in your post @TheNatureNurse. I would love to see what you harvest.
Want to learn more ways that you can engage in nature for fun and to promote your health? Sign up for The Nature Nurse™ newsletter, The Nature Nurse™ blog or follow on social media @TheNatureNurse™
Step outside and feel the ahhh...
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