Australorp/free range/flying ability?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by rudimyers, Jan 7, 2011.

  1. rudimyers

    rudimyers Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 6, 2011
    Chesnee, SC
    I have three Australorps - all at two months old. When will they start to fly? I have read that they don't fly very high. Do I need to keep them always in a mobile protected area (I want them free range) or once they are able to fly will they be able to (during the day only) keep themselves safe from predators?

    Thank you!

    Susan in Chesnee, SC
     
  2. Olive Hill

    Olive Hill Overrun With Chickens

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    Apr 19, 2009
    They don't fly that well. [​IMG] Whether or not you'll need to keep them in a tractor 24/7 depends on the predator pressure in your area, your unique setup and how much, if at all, you accept predator risk/loss as part of keeping chickens.
     
  3. BarredBuff

    BarredBuff Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My 3 adults free range just fine.............
     
  4. madimorg

    madimorg Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 26, 2010
    Central Ohio
    My Australorp free ranges just fine. I've never noticed her flying either. My Sumatra is the only one who loves to fly.
     
  5. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    I only have one Australorp, and the only place I've seen her fly is to hop/fly up onto the roosts. My girl is lead hen of my little flock, and seems very sensible about staying in close to buildings/sheltered areas when hawks are about.
     
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  6. rudimyers

    rudimyers Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 6, 2011
    Chesnee, SC
    Thank you for the responses. A hawk got one of our pullets two days ago. [​IMG]
    My husband built an 8'X8' and roughly 5' high wooden frame with chicken wire around it that we can put on top of the Chick-N-Hutch during the day, and they can "free-range". I am madly searching/looking for plans and trying to figure out if I need a permanent coop and a tractor or if I can get away with just a tractor. I am down to two pullets and a two-month-old male (what are those called?) but have read about "chicken math".
     
  7. blaundee

    blaundee Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Young males are either called roosters or cockerels.

    Australorps in general are good free range chickens, but all chickens can fall prey to predators. I would keep them covered.
     
  8. Olive Hill

    Olive Hill Overrun With Chickens

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    Young males are cockerels. Mature males are roosters.

    If you go with just a tractor the most important thing is that you make it "predator proof" and build it so that it includes an enclosed area so they can be protected from the weather when needed. This can be as simple as covering one end of the tractor with a tarp.
     
  9. rudimyers

    rudimyers Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 6, 2011
    Chesnee, SC
    I have been searching for tractor coops. I know there is a Chicken Coop for Dummies book. I have also searched through the coop forum here. Is there a website/direct link to step-by-step plans for making a tractor coop? I have three birds but probably need to make the tractor for 8-10 ("chicken math" right?).
     
  10. flockof4

    flockof4 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My one Australorp doesn't fly much. Only to get up to her laying box and her sleeping spot. She's a great layer and easy to care for. Always stays with the other three birds when they're roaming the backyard.
     

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