Originally Posted by KDOGG331
that would be awesome if I could! Maybe I will add some next year (already ordered my first chicks to arrive the end of this month). I didn't realize they self regulated themselves though, was worried they'd need a fence along the whole thing aha the problem is the actual yard is less (some of it's woods, although the yard is.still huge) and.on the back side the neighbors are right on top of us, a few feet away. maybe I could put some sort of temporary fence or something on that side? also, I know it says Ancona roams and yours self limit and stuff and this is their thread but if a roamer like that regulates, do you think my breeds would? I'm getting barred rock, black australorp, buff orpington, easter egger, and one unknown breed but probably a similar one
I can only speak for MY chickens with regard to how far they will roam. My situation is: Closest house is across the road (30' from our house) and ~300' away. No houses can be seen north or south, though there is a perpendicular road ~100' south of the house. No houses can be seen to the west. Thus they have plenty of area to forage without crossing the roads.
It is possible that YOUR chickens might self limit to part of your property AND the neighbor in the back if they are close enough to be part of the "I stick to xx feet from any building" like mine do. I can imagine chickens going quite a distance if they can go house to house like trick or treaters and still be in their "I feel safe 100' from a building" zone. In fact a couple of years ago I saw a small entourage of chickens purposefully walking across the road about 1/2 mile away. I don't know if they were going home or going away from home but in that area there are a few houses on both sides and like ours, about 30' from the road.
Ancona and other breeds are decent flyers though from what I have read and (mostly seen) while any of my breeds can go over a 4' fence, they tend to stop at the top rather than do an up and over. I've read that it can help a lot to have a wire (like electric fence wire) running over the top of a fence since they won't likely land on it. But it would have to be above the posts (maybe on those nail in insulators) or they will just used them for their intermediate stop. You can also get electric poultry netting. Depending on your property layout, it is possible you might discourage them from visiting the neighbors without having to fence the entire acreage. Mine seem to follow their beaks looking for food and the road has none so they don't go across.
Also note that my Anconas are very "pecking order" assertive, especially against the lower birds. My EE has no neck or head feathers until she moults again and the EE that was taken by a fox last year had her back feathers pretty ripped up. They don't seem to bother the BAs too much, especially the big one that brooded my 7 Meyer Hatchery birds this summer. She would attack anything that got within 5' of them and even the Anconas were running the gauntlet to get past her and into the coop at night.