post #21 of 21

1.  Realize that chickens are not long term pets (if you DO consider them to be pets.)  Consider your flock as a "pet" with members that come and go.  Unless you are going to open a poultry geriatric home, you will need to bring in new birds every year or two.

 

2.  Build your coop bigger than you think you'll need it.  Build it well, don't waste money on chicken wire for the coop.  Chicken wire will NOT deter predators.  Put plenty of ventilation in the coop.

 

3.  Mama heating pad for brooding chicks.

 

4.  Think multi-purpose:  need a brooder?  Use a box that can be turned into compost, or build a brooder that will also work as a tractor.  Size it so it can go over a raised bed in the garden.  

 

5.  Deep litter in the coop and in the run if the run looses it's grass cover.  The worst thing you can do is have your flock confined to a barren mud or dust bowl.  This creates an unhealthy soil that is not capable of growing anything because of the nutrient overload.  (It is also more prone to harboring parasites.)  Chickens miss the benefit of having a healthy soil/ green vegetation / and insects to work on.  Cover that run with a good thick layer of mixed materials (grass clippings, leaves, wood chips, spent litter from the coop, garden debris, even stable litter) and the chickens will happily turn that material into a rich black compost.  The run will no longer have any odor!  While you're at it, give your chickens some landscaping in their run:  a swing, some logs, a pallet propped up on one end, or on cinder blocks, a couple of bales of hay or straw to play on, a frame to grow fodder in.

Jesus Christ is my pilot.

My husband of 41 years is my best friend and co-pilot.

Enjoying my gardens.  My flock are my garden helpers.

Breeding a winter hearty flock with small combs and colored eggs.

Favorite breeds:  Dominique and EE.  Hatching addict.

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1084432/egg-gender-selection-survey

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1013154/byc-member-interview-laz...

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Jesus Christ is my pilot.

My husband of 41 years is my best friend and co-pilot.

Enjoying my gardens.  My flock are my garden helpers.

Breeding a winter hearty flock with small combs and colored eggs.

Favorite breeds:  Dominique and EE.  Hatching addict.

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1084432/egg-gender-selection-survey

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1013154/byc-member-interview-laz...

Reply