Chicken noise, coop design, and neighbors

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by OaklandCA, Sep 21, 2007.

  1. OaklandCA

    OaklandCA Hatching

    Sep 21, 2007
    Hello all,

    I would like to have 2-3 chickens in our backyard but I'm concerned about noise. The coop/run would be in the back of our yard and about 40-50 feet from four different neighbors' homes. Is there anything I can do to minimize the potential noise?

    For example, do they usually make noise when they're inside or outside the coop? Would it help to build a coop with insulated walls?

    Are some breeds noisier than others? I would like reliable egg production and am thinking about getting 2-3 Rhode Island Red pullets from a local supplier. (I'm in Oakland, CA.)

    Thanks for any tips or recommendations!

  2. My chickens are quiter then one neighbor's three pugs and two bulldogs, the huge amount of gardner's with their gas leaf blowers, the other neighbors son's car stereo, and the kid's that live around here including my own. [​IMG] OH I forgot to add my parrot.

    In fact only one neighbor knows I have them and that is because she keeps poping over the fence and asking if I have any eggs yet.

    I have,
    one Barred Rock
    one Rhode Island Red
    three Americanas
    two Standard Blue Cochins

    They run free in our yard all day.

    Hope this helps.
  3. Backyard Buddies

    Backyard Buddies Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    Orange County, CA
    Your setup sounds a bit like mine, although my neighbors are even closer than that. Two neighbors are only 30 feet away, another is 25 feet, and four more are 60 - 70 feet away.

    You certainly can do things to minimize the noise. Insulation may help, but remember that if you have windows that are open to provide fresh air, it'll allow the noise to escape. My coop has two windows, one in the front and one that leads out to the run. The front one has shutters that I close at night to darken the interior of the coop. That helps them sleep a little bit longer since that's the side of the coop where the sun rises. My run is covered on the top so that also helps to keep the light down until most of the rest of the world is awake. During weekends, I don't let them out into their run until after 8 a.m. The challenge is to provide enough fresh air flow while limiting the places for sound to escape.

    More than anything, it is important to pick breeds that don't mind confinement. A great chart to help you select breeds that meet your needs is the Henderson breed chart:

    , individual personalities will also determine who is loud and who is quiet. My girls are VERY quiet *most* of the time. I have 3 RIRs and 1 EE. The EE is the most quiet of the three, rarely making a peep at all except when she lays an egg. However, she's also my poorest layer. One RIR is fairly quiet, but the bottom girl is the noisiest of all. She makes noise when she wants out. She makes noise when one of the other girls is laying an egg and she's been left alone. Distractions and free ranging help a lot.

    My neighbors love my chickens and don't mind their occasional outbursts. Most of them tell me that it makes it feel as if they have a little bit of country here in the city. Oh, and they don't mind when I send fresh eggs their direction, either!
  4. joanm

    joanm Songster

    May 13, 2007
    I can't hear my chickens due to all the barking dogs in my neighorhood...[​IMG]
  5. DrakeMaiden

    DrakeMaiden Overrun with Drakes

    Jun 8, 2007
    Kitsap County, WA
    Some neighbors will enjoy the chickens, others may complain no matter how considerate you are.

    What are the city ordinances regarding keeping chickens? As long as it is legal, does your neighbor's opinion really matter? Or are you just trying to keep the peace in a quiet neighborhood?

    You should also consider smell. I've heard of people getting in trouble with neighbors because of the smell.
  6. OaklandCA

    OaklandCA Hatching

    Sep 21, 2007

    Oakland allows chickens, so it's really just about being a good neighbor. Since we already have a dog who barks for five minutes every time we leave the house, I don't want to impose too much more on folks nearby... although I suppose they could be bribed by fresh eggs now and then. [​IMG]
  7. tiffanyh

    tiffanyh Songster

    Apr 8, 2007
    My RIR and andalusians are almost silent, so is my Naken Neck---but my Buff Orpingtons are so LOUD! Louder than my bantam rooster. Come to think of it, my bantam hens - OEGB- are queit too. Bantams do well in smaller areas too....they could have more space in your given area--or you could get a couple more than planned!! [​IMG] The eggs are just a bit smaller, but tasty!
  8. greenmulberry

    greenmulberry Songster

    Jul 17, 2007
    My chickens are only ever noisy in the middle of the day, when they lay an egg. I don't think they would bother a close neighbor unless you were sleeping during the day with the window open.
  9. Quote:Ditto (except mine are just about to start laying--no eggs yet). And my neighbors are WAY closer than yours. I have 9 ladies and so help me I think one of my neighbors doesn't even know we have them yet--they're that quiet. The other neighbor only knows because when they sit on the toilet, they have direct and close-up view of the area of the yard we keep them in.
  10. skeeter9

    skeeter9 Songster

    Well, I don't have any close neighbors, but I can tell you that my EE's are very noisy (they almost never stop yacking!), my buff orps are pretty quiet, and my SLW and Australorp are almost completely silent. Everybody else has quiet times and noisy times.


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