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Does the Chicken house need a roof?

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 

Hi I am a complete Newbie to chicken raising.  I live in Mallorca and recently moved to an acre and a half plot.  I have 2 dogs and a cat. 

I want to keep 3 or 4 chickens for eggs (whilst I eat chicken - I couldn't possibly eat one I had cared for - so I have located a retirement home for when they stop laying!).

Because mainly of the dogs and other predators I plan to keep the chickens in a fenced area.  My plan was to put 2 metre high fence all around with the nesting box, roosts etc. all inside.

The question is - must the area be roofed?  I am worried about predators but also about escaping chickens! I haven't bought the chickens yet - perhaps some breeds don't try to fly as much as others?  I really have no idea - big_smile

Thanks, Paul

post #2 of 16

welcome-byc
Does it rain much in Mallorca?  If it does, they will appreciate a little cover to get out of the rain.  The other concern could be aerial predators - depending on what you have there.  As far as them escaping, they don't fly very well, so if your run walls are 5' or higher, I wouldn't expect them to get out.  Mine are even kept in by a 4' fence for the most part, but you get the occasional lighter bird that can clear 4'.

ETA:  A cover will also keep rain out of your feed.  Once wet, it will mold quickly if not eaten immediately, so keeping it dry is a priority for me.


Edited by HEChicken - 9/8/11 at 6:45am

Enjoying my 10-acres in the country with 100+ chickens and turkeys!  Blog is here.

 

Read about my fox attack here

A fox attack survival story

My hoop house

Should I add supplemental heat?

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Enjoying my 10-acres in the country with 100+ chickens and turkeys!  Blog is here.

 

Read about my fox attack here

A fox attack survival story

My hoop house

Should I add supplemental heat?

Reply
post #3 of 16
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the swift reply!!   No it doesn't rain too much in Mallorca but when it does it sure comes down.   We had more than an inch in 10 minutes the other day - 20 minutes later and there are no puddles left - all soaked in to the very dry land.

Generally the temperatures go from about 6 centigrade through to 35 centigrade (40-95F) - so very little frost.  Rain perhaps 30-40 days per year where I am. 

So maybe a sloping roofed 6 foot by 3 foot area against a wall would suffice?  I guess their foodstuffs can be under that too? 

The local market sells "good layers" for around 10 Euros (15 dollars ish) - is that a fair price?  things do tend to be a bit more expensivce here on the island.

post #4 of 16

That sounds like a fair price for started pullets, especially if your feed is also more expensive there than we can get it.  I think I would definitely put on some kind of cover then, if you can get that kind of rain - the area against the wall you mentioned would probably work.  Chickens do not in general like to get wet, and that will also protect the feed.  Have fun with your new birds - they are a joy for most of us.


Edited by HEChicken - 9/8/11 at 7:28am

Enjoying my 10-acres in the country with 100+ chickens and turkeys!  Blog is here.

 

Read about my fox attack here

A fox attack survival story

My hoop house

Should I add supplemental heat?

Reply

Enjoying my 10-acres in the country with 100+ chickens and turkeys!  Blog is here.

 

Read about my fox attack here

A fox attack survival story

My hoop house

Should I add supplemental heat?

Reply
post #5 of 16

Mallorca, Spain? How nice.....loved it.  I have a full coop, but a friend of mine has just a piece of corrugated tin over his roost about 5 feet off the ground, and then his nest boxes right next to them where they can hop from the roost bars to the nesting boxes. Were here on the Texas Gulf  coast. He's been doing this for years. Similar climates  for our winters.

5 Colombian Wyandottes, 4 Silver Laced Wyandottes,  1 Cairne Terrier, 1 Chihuahua
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5 Colombian Wyandottes, 4 Silver Laced Wyandottes,  1 Cairne Terrier, 1 Chihuahua
Reply
post #6 of 16

Being in the Mediterranean you'll no doubt be getting that type bird. They are excellent flyers as chickens go. I had leghorns than could easily fly 6.5 feet (2 meters). I'd cover the entire run with a roof. You can always allow them to range free when your about the yard and know they can't get out when your away.

Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.

 

-Charles Dudley Warner

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Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.

 

-Charles Dudley Warner

Reply
post #7 of 16

Absolutely!  Not only can predators get in, the birds can fly out.  You'd be surprised what comes around once you have chickens.  We cover the coop and run.

post #8 of 16

Why don't you want to start with chicks, should be a lot less expensive and a lot more fun!

5 Colombian Wyandottes, 4 Silver Laced Wyandottes,  1 Cairne Terrier, 1 Chihuahua
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5 Colombian Wyandottes, 4 Silver Laced Wyandottes,  1 Cairne Terrier, 1 Chihuahua
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post #9 of 16

Yes, I think the chicken house needs a roof.  Anything may be able to get in and get them.  My chickens can fly onto the fence and walk the fence upward and fly/climb out. hmm  I have a weird bunch of birds.  tongue

NPIP Certified -115 Chickens, 19 Geese, 19 BR Turkeys, 7 Rabbits, 120 Muscovy Ducks , 9 Guineas, 9 Peafowl, 8 sheep, 1 Goat and currently have 100 broilers to be processed March 2014.  And it's broody/hatching season all over again for 2014.
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NPIP Certified -115 Chickens, 19 Geese, 19 BR Turkeys, 7 Rabbits, 120 Muscovy Ducks , 9 Guineas, 9 Peafowl, 8 sheep, 1 Goat and currently have 100 broilers to be processed March 2014.  And it's broody/hatching season all over again for 2014.
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post #10 of 16

Hi (Hola!) from Seattle, Washington!  I am new to the chicken game as well and I think that a roof offers many benefits (protection from predators, protection from sun, wind, rain and keeps the chickens from flying out).  I think the key word here is protection.  You won't want to be worrying at night if something gets into the coop or worrying when you go away for the day.  And it might not be large birds that will be attracted, but animals on the ground.  Not sure what you would have on Mallorca, but even cats and dogs could potentially get to your chickens.

Good luck and welcome!

Mom to 3 with 1 Black Lab, 2 Cats of unknown age and origin; five chickens:  Amber White, Black Sex Link, 2 New Hampshire and a Wyandotte.
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Mom to 3 with 1 Black Lab, 2 Cats of unknown age and origin; five chickens:  Amber White, Black Sex Link, 2 New Hampshire and a Wyandotte.
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