Hello! Chicky LeRoo here, the urbanhomesteader new to BYC. A couple quick questions?

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by urbanhomestead, Mar 16, 2013.

  1. urbanhomestead

    urbanhomestead New Egg

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    Hello, hello. I'm excited to be here.[​IMG]
    Just a beginning[​IMG]small-timer myself compared to most of the [​IMG]chicken-virtuosos on this site. I was thinking two chickens. I used to have six in SF ..too many for me to handle with a six-month-old baby. I eventually want a duck again (maybe two, Noah's Ark style). I thought of chickens because I have an abundance of spiders[​IMG] in my garden leaking into the house..great pest control without the chemicals.
    So, from what I read, [​IMG] my veggie garden is a goner unless fenced (fruit trees okay), forget a grass run unless I split it and alternate sides, and make sure they have enough coop space for ease of cleaning but not too big so they stay warm. Here are my questions fellow feather-lovers:
    [​IMG]
    1. Is 2 a lonely number? Are 3 chickens better?
    2. Will 2 chickens destroy a 20x20-foot grassed area? If so, how long will it take or what measures can I take to prevent it (i.e. less free range time)?
    3. How do I get the chickens to eat the spiders in the veggie garden but not the veggies? Doable? [​IMG]
    4. What is the minimum coop space for two chickens? What if I add in two ducks?
    Thanks everyone! I'm interested to see the responses.[​IMG]This is fun. [​IMG]
     
  2. redsoxs

    redsoxs Chicken Obsessed

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    Greetings from Kansas, urbanhomestead, and [​IMG]! Pleased you joined us! You have asked some good questions - I'm not the chicken pro that a lot on BYC are , but I'll give it a shot.

    1. Is 2 a lonely number? Are 3 chickens better? I think three are better than two, but at least it isn't just one - that wouldn't be good.
    2. Will 2 chickens destroy a 20x20-foot grassed area? If so, how long will it take or what measures can I take to prevent it (i.e. less free range time)? I think within a week they'd have it pretty torn up. Limiting time would obviously help as would giving them alternatives to eat so they wouldn't tear up the grass as readily.
    3. How do I get the chickens to eat the spiders in the veggie garden but not the veggies? Doable? [​IMG] They will go for the spiders for sure and some of the veggies - can your garden be fenced so you can limit their time in there?
    4. What is the minimum coop space for two chickens? What if I add in two ducks? Coop space for chickens is 4 sq/ft per bird. Unsure on adding ducks - I've the feeling it is greater than 4 sq/ft per bird. Plus that water requirements of ducks make for a muddy mess. Also if ducks are added into the equation in question #2, they will destroy it very quickly by boring holes and chewing up the grass.
     
  3. urbanhomestead

    urbanhomestead New Egg

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    Helllooooo, Flock Master in Kansas![​IMG] High five.

    Ah, man. It's tough, ornery grass. Does that matter? Probably not. At least the roses will survive.[​IMG]

    If I limit their time outside, what do you suggest for a minimum run size? Is a concrete floor okay? I want the ease of cleaning/hosing off but a healthy, fun environment for the ladies, too. Dust baths can be taken in the yard.

    Thanks you.[​IMG]

    P.S. I'll just "shoo" them into the fenced grass garden to limit the veggies-garden/spider experience, and the ducks will have a fountain for water outside the run for sure (muddy ducks, yuck).[​IMG]
     
  4. redsoxs

    redsoxs Chicken Obsessed

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    The run size for chickens at least is 10 sq ft per bird. I think even with tough grass, if that's the only thing they have, it's toast. My chickens sometime access my garden - they do more scratching looking for worms and bugs than they do eating of the veggies...but they will occasionally peck at my zucchini and tomatoes! It's all worth it, though!!! Good luck to you!!
     
  5. Tanith BHH

    Tanith BHH Chillin' With My Peeps

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    [​IMG]!!
    1. Two hens will be fine but three would be better, though when I started out with chickens I got three hens (two Light Sussex and a Welsummer) and the Welsummer was kind of left out so four would be even better!! But two or three is fine.
    2. Very likely! You could cover half of the run and put down wood chips once the grass is gone so it doesn't just turn into muddy or dusty soil. Many of the feather legged breeds don't destroy grass as much but they do need slightly more attention. It's an option, though!
    3. You could just watch over the hens whilst they are in the veg garden and stop them eating the veg, and mine adore spiders!
    4.I would have a separate coop for the ducks as their requirements are slightly different but they could share the same run.

    Please be aware that you are unlikely to stop at two or three hens though! (this soon became apparent with me, so I got 2 more to add to the three, then one died and I'm planning to get another 3 very soon)[​IMG]

    Have fun!

    Tanith[​IMG]
     
  6. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

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    Hello and welcome to BYC [​IMG] I see Redsoxs got you covered, so all I can add is enjoy the site and your chickens!
     
  7. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

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    [​IMG]you got some good answers to your questions - 'these people are GOOD!' If you had a large fenced run for them you could have a gravel, sand mix - no grass - and throw things to them for fun like cabbage etc. This way you could limit their "on grass' recess periods.
     
  8. Mr MKK FARMS

    Mr MKK FARMS Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    Welcome to BYC!! [​IMG] Glad you joined us!! [​IMG]
     
  9. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    Good answers - all that I will add is that 3 is for sure better than 2. Eventually something will happen to one - with three minus one you still have two left as company for one another - welcome to BYC.
     
  10. Kevin565

    Kevin565 Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    [​IMG]
     

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