Curious noob

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by plnelson, Oct 9, 2011.

  1. plnelson

    plnelson New Egg

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    Oct 9, 2011
    Yesterday I attended a talk at my local Agway about raising chickens, and it was interesting and seemed pretty easy. I have a large fully-fenced garden and thought I might build the coop and run inside that to protect from predators. My garden supplies lots of food but chickens would add a protein source.

    I know I can buy eggs and chicken meat at a store but this way I can ensure that the chickens are humanely raised and free of antibiotics, hormones or other stuff (my garden is 100% organic).

    I'm interested in layers and broilers if I can find any way of sharing any of my capital investment between them. I know they need different food, but if everything (coop, run, etc) has to be separate then I'll stick just with broilers. So two questions to start with:

    1. Is there any way to raise layers and broilers together?

    2. How does the marginal cost (= cost after the upfront investment for hardware, like coop, run, fencing, etc, i.e., just feed, litter, nesting material, chicks, etc) compare with buying "free-range, organic" eggs and meat in a store?

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. SilkieBantams

    SilkieBantams Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 23, 2011
    Houston, TX
    [​IMG] from Texas
     
  3. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

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    Welcome!

    You can build a coop or something like a hoop tractor for very little or even free, for example with pallets, or you can spend thousands on a good looking, good sized coop. There really isn't a way to answer that. But there's lots of info in the coop section and in the chicken coops link at the top of the page, including suggestions for sources of free or nearly free materials or even old sheds. And plenty of info in the meat birds section on costs and feeding, and the pros and cons of raising them in with layers -- yes it can be done but there are down sides, especially in a run unless it is really big.

    My coop was almost free because the materials were already here, and I've never raised real meat birds (Cornish X,) we just eat extras of our DP birds (dual purpose.) So I'm not much help, myself.
     
  4. OldGuy43

    OldGuy43 Chillin' With My Peeps

    I can answer part of your question to some extent. This is our first year with chickens, and we just fenced off one end of the garden area. The garden was well established when we moved them in and they didn't seem to bother it even when we let them out to run in the garden area. Admittedly, the garden didn't do very well this year since we had a severe drought here in Central Texas, but there you are.

    As an aside raising chickens is a lot more fun than raising a garden. Not near as much work and the chickens have a lot more personality. [​IMG]

    OldGuy43 [​IMG]
     
  5. plnelson

    plnelson New Egg

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    Oct 9, 2011
    You can build a coop or something like a hoop tractor for very little or even free, for example with pallets, or you can spend thousands on a good looking, good sized coop. There really isn't a way to answer that.

    Thanks for responding, Judy, but I wasn't asking about the cost of the coop, etc. I was only asking about the marginal cost for the eggs and meat, which, as I explained in parenthesis means the additional cost for the eggs or meat you get, after you've already paid for the capital expenses.

    So, in other words, what does each additional backyard egg cost in terms of feed, chick, nesting material, etc? I want to make sure I won't be getting myself in a "$64 tomato ".

    Thanks in advance!​
     
  6. kidcody

    kidcody Overrun With Chickens

    [​IMG] [​IMG] from WA. glad you joined us [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  7. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Welcome to BYC. You'll be getting yourself into more than a $64 tomato for sure!
     
  8. TigerLilly

    TigerLilly I failed Chicken Math

    Jul 18, 2010
    Central Florida
    Quote:Thanks for responding, Judy, but I wasn't asking about the cost of the coop, etc. I was only asking about the marginal cost for the eggs and meat, which, as I explained in parenthesis means the additional cost for the eggs or meat you get, after you've already paid for the capital expenses.

    So, in other words, what does each additional backyard egg cost in terms of feed, chick, nesting material, etc? I want to make sure I won't be getting myself in a "$64 tomato ".

    Thanks in advance!

    I use eggzy to keep track of my eggs laid v. feed bought...right now, a single egg is costing me about 47 cents to produce & a dozen is $5.64. None of us are in this because we're getting rich doing it. Personally, it's therapy for me. And I want to know where my food is coming from & what's going into it.
    Yeah, you will def end up with a $64 tomato... [​IMG]
     
  9. weimarmama

    weimarmama Overrun With Chickens

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    My Coop
    [​IMG] & [​IMG] from Alabama. Glad you joined us. It definitely costs more than buying eggs from the grocery store, at least for us it does, but the benefits far outweigh that. I mean, you can't beat the taste and even the appearance of fresh eggs.
     
  10. greymane

    greymane Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Snyder County, PA
    [​IMG] from the Finger Lakes of New York! So glad to have you with us.

    [​IMG]
     

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