? about breeds that do not do well w/ confinement esp. Appenzellers

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by UrbanFarmerGirl, May 19, 2010.

  1. UrbanFarmerGirl

    UrbanFarmerGirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 18, 2010
    Western Washington
    I am brand new chicken owner, with 4 hens we got as little chicks this year. We have them in an 8 foot tall, 8 x 4 run, with a 4x4 coop on stilts. Most days, the door is opened and they can free range and eat bugs and grass for several hours. I am very interested in adding one or two Appenzeller Spitzhaubens to our flock next year- they are SO beautiful! It sounds like thier tempermant and needs are a good match for us, except that I keep reading they do not do well with confinement and like to roost in trees. Has anyone else had experience with these types of breeds? Ones who don't do will with confinement or are ornamental? What happens when they are confined? Is some confinement ok, or do they need to be free 24 hours each day? I would love to get any opinions about how they would do with my set-up... I don't want to get them if they aren't going to thrive. Thanks!
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2010
  2. Campine Lover

    Campine Lover Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 7, 2010
    Moss Beach, CA
    You should try to free range them. If you free range them for many days, then stop, they go NUTS! So, either free range or don't. Try using Chicken Tractor's during the day (google it) Keep in mind, unless you order from a breeder, then they are no more than spangled polish's. That is what hatcheries have, but sell as appenzellers. Beautiful none the less, but not the real deal.
     
  3. UrbanFarmerGirl

    UrbanFarmerGirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 18, 2010
    Western Washington
    What does it mean when you say go nuts? Do you know if they hurt themselves trying to escape? Or are they loud and flighty?
     
  4. Hillside

    Hillside Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 20, 2010
    My experience would have me stay away from such breeds with the facilities that you have. Birds geared towards vigorous activity, roaming and scratching about will be just bonkers in such a tiny area. They need both floor space and perches in their housing and either free range or LARGE covered runs big enough that they can grow grass etc. while still having chickens in there. 4' x 8' will just be mud full of bonkers birds. Think of the natural way a domestic chicken lives or used to. They roamed around on farms and spent the whole day foraging. Some of the European breeds are way more geared to this than the usual ones we see here. They might exist exist in what you've described but I doubt they'd be enjoyable or really thrive.
     
  5. EweSheep

    EweSheep Flock Mistress

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    Jan 12, 2007
    Land of Lincoln
    My Spitzhaubens are docile and calm. They dont go bonkers and they can handle confinement when they are chicks or sick. Otherwise a small coop and large run, they love it just as well as free range. My coop is only 4 x7 and the run is only 8 x 24 so three to four Spitzhaubens did well.

    Here is some of my flock I had and they did just fine.

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Hillside

    Hillside Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 20, 2010
    The original poster has a 4 x4 house and an 8 x 4 run. The last poster has a house nearly twice that size and a run six times as large. I think most of us would expect 3-4 of even a very active breed that dislikes confinement to do well in that set up. A few Hamburg bantams might suit the original poster though you get none of the head feathering that the Appenzellers have.
     

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