Breaking it down.... time spent on chickens

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Chicabee19, Aug 29, 2008.

  1. Chicabee19

    Chicabee19 Songster

    Aug 8, 2008
    I'm coming at having chickens from a business-plan background.

    I would like to know what the average time is put into caring for 4-5 normal size chickens on a daily basis?

    Looking for a list of specific duties and average time they take, for example.

    Opening the hen-house in the a.m., cleaning the average free-range urban backyard, collecting eggs, cleaning the run, putting them to bed, cleaning the coop, and so on.

  2. eggzettera

    eggzettera Songster

    Think cat...every day food & water, every week clean the litter box - done!
    oh did you want to collect eggs? scratch your cat - done!

    Serious, you get out of them what you put into them but talk about a low maintenance pet, you can't get a better pet "with benefits" [​IMG]
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2008
  3. Chicabee19

    Chicabee19 Songster

    Aug 8, 2008
    well, it's possible I can get a special grant if I decide to sell my eggs, no matter how few I would have to sell. so if I do a business plan, which is required for my program, I'm required to detail these items by time spent, and also do a cost of all materials.

  4. krjwaj

    krjwaj Songster

    Jul 7, 2008
    Apex, NC
    We have 5 girls in a coop. Avergae daily 'work-time'..letting them down from the hutch, cleaning the bedding, walking it to the compost pile, filling food and water...maybe 20 minutes?
    Chicken TV time and holding them, another 20-30 minutes.

    DH built the coop so that took 2-3 days but it is pretty efficient in design. He moves it nightly or in the morning...2 minutes.

    We don't have eggs yet, but I don't imagine that will take long to collect either.
  5. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    It depends a whole lot on how you keep them, but here it is something like:


    - husband opens tractor door on way out to car in morning: 30 sec.
    - I get eggs at breakfast time: 1 min
    - daily in afternoon, check water and feed and move tractor: 2 min
    - at dusk, shut chickens in: 30 sec

    -about every 4 days or so, refill waterer: 2 min
    -about weekly or so, refill feeder: 2 min
    -about weekly, scrape out pooey bits and rebed: 3 min


    -in morning, open run door: 2 min (it's a longer walk to get out there)
    -scrape poo off droppings board: 1 min
    -in evening, close run door: 2 min
    -every day or two, somebody's water or feed needs refilling: 2 min each

    -every few weeks, remove pooiest (right now, featheriest) parts of bedding to compost pile and add more: 5-8 min

    Of course then, there's also time spent on BYC and time spent just standing there watching the chickens or crouching down talking with them or stuff like that, which can expand to fill pretty much whatever amount of time is available and then some [​IMG]

  6. halo

    halo Got The Blues

    Nov 22, 2007
    My Coop
    I don't see any time allotted for Chicken TV time.
  7. krjwaj

    krjwaj Songster

    Jul 7, 2008
    Apex, NC
    I allotted! [​IMG]

    Chicken TV time and holding them, another 20-30 minutes.​
  8. Chicabee19

    Chicabee19 Songster

    Aug 8, 2008
    wow... raising chickens really is an efficient use of one's time!

    thank you so much for that breakdown. It will help with my plan if I do decide to do one.

    Last edited: Aug 29, 2008
  9. GopherBoyFarms

    GopherBoyFarms Songster

    Mar 18, 2008
    Vancouver WA
    sheesh for a while I was spending 4 hours a day chasing chickens that flow into the neighbors yard. DH asks "what the heck are you doing all day???" me "ahhhh chickens" But we have 20 so thats a little different then 4 and they free I have to add time in there for chasing them out of the garden, and it takes for ever to collect eggs cuz its a egg hunt every day, they have the most beautiful coop (it won an award [​IMG] ) but they love laying in my flowers and in the garage!!!
  10. DrakeMaiden

    DrakeMaiden Overrun with Drakes

    Jun 8, 2007
    Kitsap County, WA
    Don't forget time (and fuel costs) to pick up feed.

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