Best bird for bug control in goat pens

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by SheriM, Feb 16, 2009.

  1. SheriM

    SheriM Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hi, everybody. I was wondering if anyone could recommend a breed of chicken (or other poultry) that would fare well living in my goat pens. The fences are only 4 ft high and some stretches are page wire (also called field fence) with the smaller gaps at the bottom and larger holes farther up. It is imperative that the birds do not escape from the pen as a couple of my yard dogs have never been around chickens before and are convinced it is their sworn duty to keep anything new and different out of the yard. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, since I doubt any potential chicken predators could get anywhere near the place, but I'm not sure the dogs would understand that a chicken is supposed to be here. I'll be working with the dogs once I get the chickens but during the learning curve, I need to know the chickens are safe so anything that lives in the goat pens will have to be something that can't fly out and is too big to get through the holes in the page wire.

    I'll be building a coop and covered run for most of my chickens, as I seem drawn to the type that would easily get out of a low fence, but if I could have a few of a different breed to help keep the bugs down in the goat pens, that would be great.
     
  2. al6517

    al6517 Real Men can Cook

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    :confused:Guinies are famous bug eaters, why else would folks keep the noisey buggers.

    AL
     
  3. SheriM

    SheriM Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:But I thought Guineas were good fliers. As I said, I need something that can't get over a 4 ft fence.
     
  4. al6517

    al6517 Real Men can Cook

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    Quote:But I thought Guineas were good fliers. As I said, I need something that can't get over a 4 ft fence.

    Second choice then would have to be an older very large breed chicken that is known as a non flyer, Maybe a standard cochin, or a jersey giant, Light brahma.

    AL
     
  5. tiki244

    tiki244 Flock Mistress

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    I think there may be a lot of different chickens that like to range and eat bugs and dont fly. Old English games do fly, otherwise I think they are lovely rangers. Maybe it would be a good thing, they could fly away from the dogs if need be. [​IMG]
     
  6. tiki244

    tiki244 Flock Mistress

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    I think barred rocks would be a good choice too. But there are plenty of other breeds. If you dont plan on having a rooster I think RIRs would be good too.
     
  7. Ryu

    Ryu Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Our best bug eaters are Gunieas and Buckeyes--the Buckeyes even kill mice.

    But if you don't want fliers, maybe Standard Cornish? They can fly, but usually prefer to stay low and they love to forage and kick.
     
  8. Southerngirl

    Southerngirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We have banties and standard breeds that run around in the goat pen. They just learn to stay out of the goats way! I have seen babies fly on the goats backs to roost ! [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] They really do help keep pests down too. However, our Light Brahma/ Jersey Giant/ Cornish hens easily fly over a 4 ft fence in our poultry yard. You can keep their wings clipped too. The cochins are heavy and would probably be better for you. [​IMG]
     

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