My organic garden has been decimated by grasshoppers and I have had enough. I said yes to 3 hens, about 3 yrs old. They don't lay much but I figured between the flies and grasshoppers the hens might be helpful. I have heard Guineas would be the best breed but I already said yes to these 3. The rest of the flock went to the processing place as their time had come. It will be a chance to start slow with chickens anyway. There isn't much left to any of the greens growing in the garden so the chickens can't do much damage. They might however eat the grass hoppers and maybe prevent the buggers from leaving grasshopper eggs for next year. I tried NOLO bait but I think it was out of date. My farm tends to be a rescue farm so the hens will have a good life. We have 4 goats who have never seen chickens. 2 Labs and 2 kittens and a rescue rabbit. I lived on a farm for 6 mos with hens so I have some experience caring for chickens. I have a lot to learn. I have a section in my barn for the hens that has a sturdy fence ( 6 ft x 12 ft 17 ft high ish). I was cleaning it out yesterday for the girls. I hope to let the hens out late day when it cools and try to entice them back to the roost with their grain. The garden is fenced in so if all else fails I will have to catch the girls. The hens are used to organic soyless grain and the owner grew some type of green grass for them. They will get similar grain but I only have prairie grass and lots and lots of grasshoppers and some flies We have spotted coyotes chasing the lab in a back field. The neighbor farmer was out shooting at them-I don't know if he got them or not. The neighbor has chickens too. Do I need to prevent sparrows from being in the hens night time area? The sparrows seem to use the barn in the winter and nesting in spring. Thanks all!