Getting chick(en)s this time of year?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by SNJ, Oct 15, 2011.

  1. SNJ

    SNJ Hatching

    Oct 15, 2011
    ok, i HOPE this is the right place to post this [​IMG][​IMG]

    I'm in BUrlington COunty (New Jersey) and am preparing to set up with a small flock (~10, no more than 15) of chickens in an outdoor coop and fenced yard. What I want to know from experienced chicken keepers, is if it's appropriate to get chickens at this time of the year, or should I wait untill spring.

  2. First.... Welcome to BYC
    Now, your question..... Your question must be in turn answered with a multitude of questions.
    Are you wanting chicks or chickens?
    What breed are you considering?
    How well built is your coop?
    Will your coop protect your birds from the elements?
    Will your run be covered or open?
    Where will the birds be if you get extended periods of snow?
    Is your coop large enough to handle that many birds for extended periods of time without crowding?

    Some thoughts.... If you are wanting chicks then your coop has to be able to maintain a temperature safe for growing chicks. If you are wanting grown birds then know that they can handle freezing temperatures, depending on breed, as long as the coop is free of drafts. Grown birds will also need plenty of room to move around during the day if they cannot get outside. Chickens are not perticularly fond of snow. If your coop is going to be well insulated yet have fresh air available and you are wanting grown birds and have plenty of room then by all means get them now if you like. If you are getting chicks then know that they would have to be kept warm and if you can do that then by all means get them.
  3. SNJ

    SNJ Hatching

    Oct 15, 2011
    In order:

    Chicks or chickens. I don't have a specific desire (After all, one will grow up to be the other), but if the grown chickens do better in the fall/winter than chicks I'll definitely prefer them.

    I don't have a single breed in mind. Looking @ the breeds chart I feel like the "kind in a candy store" LOL. I am focusing on the ones that are "All climates" though, if that helps.

    What qualifies as "well built" ? I'm trying to make sure it's sturdy, safe from predators, cleanable, etc. but I don't know exactly what you're looking for with that question. It should protect them from wind, rain, snow, etc though. My big concern now is (enough) ventilation, I don't want an offensive ammonia plume.

    Most of the run will be in the open, I might cover part of it up if needed. If we get extended periods of snow, the coop of course, and the parts of the run I shovel out (Snow here is rarely heavy, and when it is there's nothing else to do anyway).

    Is there a bright line rule for chicken coop size to prevent crowding if they're stuck indoors?


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