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Do We Have a Chicken Thread Here?

Grnd93

The Dude
Joined
May 19, 2020
Member Number
236
Messages
728
Loc
Michigan
After many years of talking about it we might actually pull the trigger on raising chickens this year. Most likely just egg layers for now.

I’m sure some of you have experience. Please share your tips.

hopefully a welder isn’t required :flipoff2:
 
We have had them 7 years or so. Chickens are tasty so fortify the coop. Build a run around that and wire mesh overhead all the way to a foot underground. A Raccoon can pull a chicken through chicken wire in pieces so use 1/2" hardware cloth at ground level.

We let ours free range. Thought birds of prey would be a bigger issue than it is. But we do have a rooster so he helps look after them.

Keep an eye out for roving dogs. They can tear them up in an instant
 
I have a coop. I built the coop from scratch, most from pallets except for studs and OSBs, last year when I was furloughed (fuck you covid-19 scamdemic).

I'll just find a cheap/free shed and convert that into a coop if I need another.
 
We want to. But I'm hesitant. It looks like a lot of work for not so much return. Just keeping them warm in negative temperatures looks like it'd be a pain.
 
Had em for a few years.

oddly, even with a bunch of fox, coyote and dogs around, the closest we got to losing one was a hawk sneaking in.
 
The coop (not fox proof).
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bought my place and it already had a coop.

coons took out or last flock. i blocked off where they were getting in. the flock we got now isnt laying do to the weather and molting, was getting 6-8 eggs a day out of 14 chickens. if they dont start laying after it warms up were gonna butcher and eat them. as of now they are expensive pets.

RUGER:usa:
 
We want to. But I'm hesitant. It looks like a lot of work for not so much return. Just keeping them warm in negative temperatures looks like it'd be a pain.

they don't really freeze themselves to death. lot's of ground birds survive winter just fine. give them a roof and some walls as a windblock and let 'em be
 
Its not much work at all if you set up an automatic watterer and throw some feed to them once a day. If you build thier pen big enough you never need to shovel chicken shit as it just disappears into the ground. If you buy whatever scratch/lay pellets are on sale and dont over feed them (1 handfull per chicken per day) you can have eggs for what they cost to buy at the store.
Its also more cost effective to buy 8month to year old hens for $15 then to raise them to that age and sell them for $10 once they are done laying thier 2nd or third season. A 1year old hen will lay an egg every day, a 2 year old is good for an egg every 2 days, and so on.
 
We want to. But I'm hesitant. It looks like a lot of work for not so much return. Just keeping them warm in negative temperatures looks like it'd be a pain.
Spent all morning watching YouTube videos. One of the channels is a couple in Wisconsin that has a dozen or so. Other than heated water they don’t do anything special for winter. Just made sure to coop wasn’t drafty.
 
Got 12 of them they all lay an egg a day it seems. No heat and I’m at 8500’ they haven’t died yet.
 
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We have 8 in our backyard, not much work involved and we get ~6 eggs a day.
we bought a tractor supply coop on clearance several year ago. Still have it and it's in good shape. Egg layer pellets for food, free range in the backyard. Helps with bugs as well.

I like the rhoad island reds the best. Have had a few other breeds as well but the rhoads are good. Eggs are far better than anything you can buy at the store.
 
Wife has her breeds picked out. Planning for 10 I guess.

I have an old shed that was going to get donated to the bon fire pile this year. Instead I’ll try to use most of the wood for the coop.

we have raccoons, possums and coyotes around, so keeping them safe will probably be my biggest challenge.
 
My neighbor converted an old bread van into a chicken coop:eek: Closes the door in the evening.

The biggest issue I saw from owning them is the sheer amount of shit. A property I looked at about 10 year ago had a coop and the shit flowing down hill was disturbing and the property smelt like shit. That has turned me off from considering them.
 
We started last year as a Covid Hobby for my wife. I scored a free 4'x8' coop from a friend who gave up on his chickens, so I only had to build a run. Ended up with a 8'x10' run but we are adding another 8 birds to our original 6 and going to most likely double up the run size this spring. Hardware cloth is $$ compared to chicken wire so I did chicken wire on the sides all the way up and hardware cloth on the bottom 4ft around the run. Instead of digging and burying mesh, just lay it flat on the ground 2' around the run with it attached to the run base. Raccoons and foxes aren't smart enough to start digging away from the wall, they just go right up to the wall and try to dig and hit the wire and stop. I also ran some landscape timbers and back filled with gravel for aesthetics. I covered the run with the cheapest clear plastic roofing panels I could find. In the winter we wrap the run in plastic to keep most of the snow out but we have Buff Orpingtons who are pretty cold weather hardy so its more just to keep them dry.

Im not really a fan of the Coop, I plan to build one that is closer in shape to a shed. The footprint on ours is nice and big but the vertical height and roosting space is lacking.

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We use construction sand in the bottom of our run. There is about 1800# of it in there. We just rake the poop right into it. the sand helps dry out the poop and keeps the run from being a muddy, smelly mess.
 
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Build a coop with an automatic door so you don't forget to lockup at night.
my neighbor has chickens i have chicken sat a few times i set up sy trail cam to see what was trying to get in. It was everything coyote, coons. possum ... hawk got one one day I was taking care of them, they don't hang out in the open anymore always under the trees.


Laying chickens tast like crap 🐔, you might as well eat your shoe.
 
I also ended up building a brooder for the basement since I live in New England and the weather doesnt let chicks stay in the garage or outside very well. We used heat lamps the first go around but are switching to a Plate style heater this time around.

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All of ours but one got murdered by those stupid masked trash pandas. Will have to try again.
 
I have had them for about 10 years now.

pretty easy animals.

I lock them up at night and let them run around during the day.

I live with tons of predators and have had very little lost over the years.

Honestly, I love having them. They make me happy.

i also have ducks, they are more of a PITA than the chickens.
 
I'll bite... if I were to do chickens for meat, what should I be looking at? Or am I better off considering turkey at that point?

There are specific breeds for meat birds. I have only helped my friend with a small farm process a few so I don't know exactly which breed he usually does Ill ask him.
 
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