Hello From Indiana...


8 Years
Sep 1, 2011
Hello everyone,
Im a 28 year old Family Man with a beutiful stay at home wife/mom and three beutiful girls. I have been interested in being as self sufficiant as possible for a long time and now that we have the space I plan on doing so. My first goal is to get a working chicken coop going that produces eggs for me my wife and our three children. But as with everything I do I will try to limit the mistakes by learning learning learning!!!

I just purchased a farm and the previous owner had chickens, phesants and turkeys at one point I think. So there is a coop and birdy type area on our farm. I have sooo many questions it is unreal and the more I read the more questions I have. The area I have is two rooms, separated by a door, both are 10 by 10 and have the doggie type door on the bottom to the outside. Then outside the doggie type doors there is an area that has chicken fence about 6 by 20 by about 6 feet tall. So my first question is how many chickens do I have room for? I have this idea in my head of chickens running around our farm ,but I want them to lay eggs in the boxes we have in the coops so can you get them to go into the coop at night and still let them run during the day? Right now the fenced in area outside the coop is over run with weeds can I use round-up or do I need to hand pull them to keep from using a chemical in the chickens area.

So after I get my area ready for chickens I am wondering what are the smallest or youngest birds I can get and put in a coop? Also can I get a few older birds so I have some already laying and get some chicks? So the last question for now is does anyone know where to buy chickens in the West Lafayette Indiana area????

Thank You to anyone who take the time to answer my questions.
Hi Family Guy and welcome to BYC. It sounds like you have moved to a wonderful farm! Congrats. I am somewhat new but I will answer some of your questions. As far as the coop goes, the rule of thumb is 4 square foot per bird. If they are closed in the run then it is 10 square feet per bird.
When starting them out usually keeping them in the coop and run for a week or so will teach them where to lay their eggs and go back in the coop at night. But when free ranging you may have an easter egg hunt every day. No guarentees haha.
Day old chicks need to be kept at 90 degrees the first week and drop 5 degrees every week after that. So you could keep them in a secure coop depending on the weather. You may need a heat lamp. There is so much info on here....check out the search bar.
Also you can keep chickens of different ages but you have to watch out for a few things. First, I wouldn't put them together until they are close in size. So you would have to keep the chicks seperate, but your coop is divided so you could do that. Second, when buying older chickens, you will need to quarentine them for at least 30 days far away from the chicks to make sure they are not bringing any disease in. Also much info on here for that.
Do not put weed killer on the weeds. You can mow them down but trust me it will be dirt in a few months! Weed killer will harm the chickens.
Craigslist is a great place to get chicks or you can even look here to see if anyone in your area is selling them. Look at the index and find the chickens for sale or post in the wanted to buy.
I hope I answered a few thing for you. BYC is the best place for answers. Just start looking around. Good luck and keep us updated and keep asking the questions!

from central queensland OZ

enjoy the site'
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Suzi answered most, so I'll just say Hi and

And I agree, don't use any weed killer, mow if you must - the chickens will have a great time trampling the weeds and eating the bugs in them. Soon you won't have many weeds.
Suzi answered most, so I'll just say Hi and

And I agree, don't use any weed killer, mow if you must - the chickens will have a great time trampling the weeds and eating the bugs in them. Soon you won't have many weeds.

If they like what they see you won't have much of anything. LOL

from California

You're living my dream.

Funny, I've lost chickens before but never to Roundup. Then again it doesn't kill weeds very good either. You have a farm. Get guineas. I don't have them anymore, but I tell you that are awesome for weeds and bugs. Where a chicken will scratch at everything a guinea will go straight for the weeds. Mine never touched flowers or grass. I love them and hope to have them again one day.

You are in the perfect place to find chickens. There are breeders all over this forum. Look in the "Where am I where are you section in the Idex and start meeting some that are close to you. Check the sales and auction sections. We're here. Anything you want to find is right here.

I think what you need to do first is research the breeds that you're interested in. I used to buy a chicken on a whim. OK OK I still do. I have a LOT of birds. But I've gotten better at working on particular breeds now and from top breeders. That might also help you with your self sufficiency. Is that spelled right? hmm
If you buy better stock you could also make enough selling hatching eggs from them to help with feed costs. That's how I have to do it to be able to have my birds.

Keep reading, search key words for answers you need and ask questions. Most of all, have a good time.
Howdy, Family_Guy, and
! I think it's great that you are going for self sufficiency!
Sounds like you already have a pretty good coop set up for a good number of chicks. Best of luck with your poultry endeavors!

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