Another chicken newbie

Jeremyward

Hatching
Aug 4, 2016
3
0
7
Greetings everyone. ..I'm new to this chicken thing although I've been around chickens my whole life I've never had to tend to them.I decided it was time to do this and I built a 4x4 coop 6ft tall and 2ft off the ground surrounded by a 40ft by 10ft fenced in run. I'm ready to get chickens but don't kno how many would be too much and don't kno what age group to buy. I really like the Rhode island red breed but I'm at a standstill deciding how many and ages I should get.
 

Mountain Peeps

Jesus is my life
Premium Feather Member
6 Years
Apr 23, 2014
28,457
6,114
677
Colorado
My Coop
My Coop
Welcome to BYC! Please make yourself at home and we are here to help.

Congrats on finishing the coop! Ah yes. It can be difficult deciding on chicken breeds and how many to get. There are few questions you can ask yourself to help narrow down your search.

How much room do I have? Will I have room for more chickens in the future?

How much time do I have to spend with my flock?

Do I have enough money to care for a large flock?

Do I want friendly chickens who can be my pets?

Am I wanting a full and colorful egg basket?

Do I want to eventually butcher and eat my chickens?

Do I want chicks that I can raise myself and tame? Or do I want birds that will begin laying eggs within a few weeks of purchase?

All these questions should help you choose your breeds, age group and number. Also, here are some helpful links that are worth exploring.

https://www.backyardchickens.com/atype/1/Learning_Center
https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/getting-started-raising-chickens
https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/how-to-pick-the-right-chicken-breeds-for-you
https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/top-10-things-to-consider-before-buying-chickens
https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/...cken-guide-to-picking-backyard-chicken-breeds

I hope this helps you. Best of luck and welcome to our flock!
 

chickluvinfreak

Songster
Apr 7, 2016
1,360
256
166
Riding off into the sunset :)
My Coop
My Coop
Coop wise your chickens will need 4 Sq ft each and in the run 10 Sq ft each. That means you only have room for 4 chickens in the coop. But 40 in the run. So your coop and run size are drastically different. As far as breeds what purpose are the chickens for (meat/eggs/both)? Is your weather hot or cold? You need to take this into consideration to pick the right breeds.
 

redsoxs

Crowing
8 Years
Jul 17, 2011
25,643
2,075
463
North Central Kansas
Greetings from Kansas, Jeremyward, and :welcome. Happy you joined us. A lot of preliminary learning can be found in the Learning Center here https://www.backyardchickens.com/atype/1/Learning_Center
In terms of the number to get, while it sounds like you have a huge run, but your 4x4 coop will limit you. An article from the Learning Center below does a great job describing the space required for chickens. Roughly, it is 4 sq. ft. per bird in the coop and 10 sp. ft. in the run. There are other considerations but it looks like your coop limits you to about 4 birds.
https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/how-much-room-do-chickens-need
Breeds! Now that's the fun part. You can go all one variety (hard to go wrong with RIRs as you mentioned) but the sky is the limit. What age? Well baby chicks are cheaper than point of lay hens but of course you have to raise them before they start laying at 5-6 months. And chicks are fun!
If it was me I'd do some research in the links above. Then you might be armed to make more informed decisions. Good luck to you! :)
 

Jeremyward

Hatching
Aug 4, 2016
3
0
7
Thank you guys for your replies..I have 3 children and my sole purpose of wanting them will be for pets and eggs...I also would consider breeding if I have the room.. My coop has 6 nesting boxes .. I built it myself so its not anything spectacular but it is solid and sturdy will hold up for a long time.
 

Jeremyward

Hatching
Aug 4, 2016
3
0
7
400
 

chickluvinfreak

Songster
Apr 7, 2016
1,360
256
166
Riding off into the sunset :)
My Coop
My Coop
If you want them for eggs Rhode islands are good. Theirs also Easter Eggers, orpingtons, leghorns (really good layers), and Plymouth rocks to name a few. Do you get cold weather? because will need more heavily feathered chicken breeds. And if your raising them with your kids you may want to get especially friendly breeds and maybe some ornamentals. Silkies are pretty good with kids and they love how soft and cute they are.
 
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drumstick diva

Still crazy after all these years.
Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Aug 26, 2009
137,961
263,716
2,027
Out to pasture
For docile breeds to have with kids, Cochins, Buff Orpingtons, Silkies, Black australorps. Silkies are not great layers but, they are kid favorites, and tend to go broody. Which means they sit on eggs & hatch them (if fertile).
 

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