Am I looking after my chicken properly.

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by chris503632, Oct 20, 2011.

  1. chris503632

    chris503632 Out Of The Brooder

    Oct 13, 2011
    Hi all. I am new to chicken keeping, having recently been adopted by an escaped battery chicken.

    I'm a little paranoid that I may not be looking after her properly.

    I have built a coop and run (after reading a book on the subject), but I would like some confirmation that I have provided enough space. I am planning to get a second chicken to keep the first company. The coop measures 3' by 2' and is 3' feet high. It is constructed from marine ply-board and I have waterproofed the floor and roof with shed felt. There is a mesh covered window running along the top front of the coop (about 4 inches by three feet). I have a perch running along the length of the coop - it is made from 2" x 1" with sharp edges removed and is about 9 inches off the floor.

    I have built a tray in the bottom of the hutch which is filled with about 3 inches of dust free wood chips and a little hay.

    The run is currently 4' square and 2' high, but I am planning on expanding this to 4' x 8'. It is currently on bare soil with a few pieces of grass turf. The plan is t have two 8' x 4' patches side by side and to move the coop and run every week. In the off week I plan to dig over the soil. I clean up poop every day (from both the coop and run) and change the wood chips once or twice a week.

    When someone is at home (usually three days a week), we let her out into the garden (for a good few hours) so she can have a proper run around, but when working we open her coop in the morning and shut her up at night. She has access to her coop from the run, so can get out of the elements if required.

    Water is changed every day, she is has access to layers pellets and grit throughout the day, and has a water bowl and a bowl of grit in the coop over night. She eats lots of worms and other beasties form the garden and gets a small hand-full of corn in the evening.

    I’m planning to get her a friend in the next couple of weeks - so I'll probably be pestering people for advice about that too.

    Does this sound like a good life for a chicken or am I doing anything wrong?

    Thanks in advance [​IMG]
  2. linben

    linben Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 5, 2010
    Austin, TX
    It all sounds good, but she needs a friend ASAP. Also make sure coop is predator proof. I bet she likes her new life!
  3. jeepguy982001

    jeepguy982001 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 4, 2011
    athens, wv
    i'm new too but sounds like you really need a bigger coup for another chicken. Also is it a "regular" size chicken or a bantam. There is a thread on here for suggested space requirements but i don't know how to post it.
  4. Tam'ra of Rainbow Vortex

    Tam'ra of Rainbow Vortex Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 30, 2009
    Rogue Valley, S. Oregon
    Sounds like she's in very good hands!
    Whereabouts are you? I am sure it won't be hard to find a friend for her. I'm headed to a poultry swap on Saturday in Oregon...if you're in the neighborhood you should come by. If not, look for other swaps near you and you will have your pick of chickens. Just watch out or you will come home with 5!
  5. chris503632

    chris503632 Out Of The Brooder

    Oct 13, 2011
    I'm based in North Yorkshire in the UK - Oregon is just a bit too far to come for a chicken [​IMG]

    I'm thinking of going for another ex-battery - I like the idea of giving them a new lease of life.

    What size coop should I go for for two chickens? Is 6 square feet too small then?
  6. jeepguy982001

    jeepguy982001 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 4, 2011
    athens, wv
    i would hate to give the wrong advice but i think it was 2-3 ft per chicken inside. soo i guess it work. Hopefully some others with more experience will give their 2 cents.
  7. new chick 203

    new chick 203 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 8, 2010
    Ridgefield CT
    sounds like you are going to be a good chicken parent. A couple of thoughts... It seems awfully small. If they are full size girls they need more space. If they live where there is some cold nasty weather where they are likely to spend some time inside they need even more space. If they aren't going to free range every day than you need EVEN MORE space. That size coop is handy to have if one needs to be isolated for some reason for a short period, but you might want to rethink this. Also, the roost needs to be more like a 2x4. If it is too small it may lead to foot issues. It sounds like you are very thoughtful and will do the right thing.[​IMG]
  8. StarLover21

    StarLover21 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 11, 2011
    Doing GREAT! [​IMG]
  9. chickchicks

    chickchicks Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 28, 2011
    warrington uk
    your from the uk !!!!!!! hello im in cheshire

    i have 5 birds at the moment and a 6*4 shed with a 5*4 run . they go in that at day when im in work and then play in the garden for the rest
  10. BigBird31

    BigBird31 Out Of The Brooder

    Oct 21, 2011
    she be a bit aggressive considering the conditions you found her in. try your best to tame her but she might not ever be fully tamed

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