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Raising Chickens in Florida

post #1 of 34
Thread Starter 

I live in Pinellas County (west central Florida).  I want to start owning chickens for eggs, and was wondering if someone could suggest a particular breed that would do well in our climate:  never freezes (I am near the gulf) in the winter and stays steamy hot (very humid) from mid June through end of September.  Other tips would be helpful, things to watch out for.  I am thinking air circulation would be important, and I am planning on building a coupe that would have a lot of venting (roof, walls, floor).  Thanks for an y help.

Claydoctor.  smile

post #2 of 34

I used to live in St Petersburg Fl for 15 years, I currently live in New Port Richey 40 miles  north.  I  have now 10  mutt hens, but used to have  up to  50  hens of mostly heavy breeds here in NP Richey. Most of my property is shaded by granpa oaks.  That's the key.
You do not need any  buildings for chicks here, I use big wire cage with  roof, solid back wall  and perhaps side wall (wind protection)   for night shelter, predator protection (racoons).  They do not need any heat or cold shelter in our winters, just shelter from heavy winds, rain and predators.

As for breeds any breed will do,  I would avoid heavy legfethered breeds like Cochins and Brachmas,  but I know there are Brahma breeders in Fl so perhaps  this is not the issue.

If you have no trees you have to provide some shading structure constructed the way it will catch any wind breeze,   do not attempt to keep them in full sun.  St Petersburg is hotter and more humid in summer than  Pasco county where I live now.smile

Good  Lord  made birds  of meat   for us  to eat.
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Good  Lord  made birds  of meat   for us  to eat.
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post #3 of 34

We have cochin bantams and rosecomb bantam and they do quite well...


I have some really good Show Quality rosecomb bantam chicks hatching out Friday.. This is what they will look like:

http://i517.photobucket.com/albums/u337/dixiechick1372/Zorro-1.jpg

selling them for $5 each

Red Barn Farms, breeding bantams:  Black Cochins, Blue OEGBs, BBR Moderns, White Crested Black Polish, Rosecombs and Golden Phoenix!
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Red Barn Farms, breeding bantams:  Black Cochins, Blue OEGBs, BBR Moderns, White Crested Black Polish, Rosecombs and Golden Phoenix!
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post #4 of 34

I lived in Florida for 40 years before retiring to Alabama.  During all of that time I kept heritage RIRs and they thrived.  I too used  raised coops that were hardware cloth on 3 sides and the floor but with a solid back wall and a roof with a large overhang.  My coops were all under the trees and opened into large runs.  I did not let the hens free-range because of predators, raccoons and foxes mostly.

Good luck with your new project!

Rusty

Rusty Hills Farm ... home of  AQHA  A Rusty Zipper and Buff Plymouth Rocks.

"Y'know the worst part about gettin' old? It's gettin' old!" Ben Johnson (My Heroes Have Always Been Cowboys)

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Rusty Hills Farm ... home of  AQHA  A Rusty Zipper and Buff Plymouth Rocks.

"Y'know the worst part about gettin' old? It's gettin' old!" Ben Johnson (My Heroes Have Always Been Cowboys)

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post #5 of 34

welcome-byc
Welcome to chickeneering in Florida!  I'm in western West Palm Beach, with a large flock of many different chicken breeds, and haven't had problems with any of them in our heat.  They seem to have enough jungle bird instincts left to know how to stay cool when they need to.  They mostly lay around in the shade and don't move much when it's really hot.

You should build your coop for security as well as airiness.  I wouldn't worry about venting the floor, the heat doesn't bother them that much.  We do have lots of predators, raccoons & foxes & more, that stay busy year 'round.

You must also plan for ... hurricanes!  Consider what you'll do if/when a hurricane threatens your place, what you'll do with your birds, how you'll secure your coop.

It's not happy people who are thankful, it is thankful people who are happy!
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It's not happy people who are thankful, it is thankful people who are happy!
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post #6 of 34

Gainesville shouting out here!   I agree with Sunny...I would NOT put in a wire floor as it just give predators more area to work with.  Our "coops"...we call them pens... are solid back with wire on three side, solid roof.  We put plastic on the bottom front during the winter but just pull it off during the warmer weather.  The absolute key is SHADE.  As long as you put the pens/coops under shade trees they will do fine.  I think we turned a fan on ours a couple of times last summer during extremely hot days.  We do have a NOT of predators, so the pens need to be VERY predator proof.  Racoons are strong and can actually bend wire.  We staple it very tightly and then put a board overtop of the wire to secure it further. 

We have HEAVILY feathered bantam cochins as well as a variety of layers.  I would highly recommend light brahmas for their beauty, excellent egg laying, great personalities and hardiness.  We only have one right now, but I'm going to be on the lookout for another one to add to our flock.

http://threecedarsilkies.webs.com/

 

NPIP certified

Member APA, ABA, ASBC

Raising exhibition silkies in black, white, blue, splash and American Paint

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http://threecedarsilkies.webs.com/

 

NPIP certified

Member APA, ABA, ASBC

Raising exhibition silkies in black, white, blue, splash and American Paint

Reply
post #7 of 34

I am in Central FL outside of Oviedo. I was wondering does anyone know where I can get Golden laced Bantam cochins, Barred bantam cochins, and Millie Fleur D' Uccles here in florida.

I Finally Got a Job after a Year looking. I have 2 horses a Paint Gelding and a Quarter horse Arabian cross gelding. I also am owned by a brat of a Pembroke Welsh Corgi.
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I Finally Got a Job after a Year looking. I have 2 horses a Paint Gelding and a Quarter horse Arabian cross gelding. I also am owned by a brat of a Pembroke Welsh Corgi.
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post #8 of 34

big_smile I live in East Orlando...right next to chulouta...LOL im very close to you bantamlover23!

Well i would love to suggest Ameraucanas they are great birds, and lay those beautiful blue eggs big_smile

I have white rocks that look they do very well in the heat as well as the wind....they are great chickens....

**please do not threadjack with your ordinance agenda. Thanks.**

Starting my new flock for this Spring 2014

 

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Support the Old-Style Balinese Cat breed. Exotic, Intelligent and beautiful cat breed. Spread the word or adopt one!

Azureys Cats
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Starting my new flock for this Spring 2014

 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Support the Old-Style Balinese Cat breed. Exotic, Intelligent and beautiful cat breed. Spread the word or adopt one!

Azureys Cats
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post #9 of 34
Thread Starter 

Thanks to all that replied.  I am new to using forums and found all the info educational and reassuring that there is probably no such thing as a bad or simple question.  I have an area of shade trees and of full sun.  the garden takes up the full sun areas now, so the chickens will go in the shade, simple.  Also have many possums and raccoons, so thanks for the suggestions for security. 

I do have a question.  I am also thinking of starting a bee hive, and that would be located in the shade area as well.  Does anyone see a problem with the bees bothering the chickens or vice-versa? 

I have a friend that explained a set up he saw in haiti on a missions trip recently. Wanted to see what anyone thought of this for creating synergy between back yard projects.  Their coop run area was on a concrete slab and fenced.  The slab was pitched so that when they washed it off, everything went into the fish pond, where they raised fish for food.  He said , they said, that this feed the fish.  Some of the chicken droppings were added to the garden compost,  table scraps and the garden compost was added to their worm farm, the worms were used to feed the fish, and the fish left overs were added to the chicken feed.  Being new to this, I wonder what anyone thinks of this, flaws or a great idea?

post #10 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chicken7777 

big_smile I live in East Orlando...right next to chulouta...LOL im very close to you bantamlover23!

Well i would love to suggest Ameraucanas they are great birds, and lay those beautiful blue eggs big_smile

I have white rocks that look they do very well in the heat as well as the wind....they are great chickens....

**please do not threadjack with your ordinance agenda. Thanks.**


Acutually I live in Chuluota, but most people do not know where that is. That is so cool that we are so close. big_smile

I Finally Got a Job after a Year looking. I have 2 horses a Paint Gelding and a Quarter horse Arabian cross gelding. I also am owned by a brat of a Pembroke Welsh Corgi.
Reply
I Finally Got a Job after a Year looking. I have 2 horses a Paint Gelding and a Quarter horse Arabian cross gelding. I also am owned by a brat of a Pembroke Welsh Corgi.
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