Hello from Whately MA

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by meyer7, Mar 22, 2017.

  1. meyer7

    meyer7 Hatching

    Mar 22, 2017
    Hello our family is brand-new at chicken raising. We bought 8 chicks at tractor supply went back two days later to buy the coop and then bought six more chicks. I am a bit nervous for the amount of chickens we have and the size coop we bought. The coop we purchased was an extra large coop, stating on the box that it holds up to 18 standard size chickens. So my husband thought if we had 14 we should be fine. I heard you need 4 ft.² square feet per chicken. I am doing the math and it doesn't make sense to me. I am confused because the coop holds up to 18 chickens and we have 15 which would be okay, but I've also heard that you need 4 ft.² for every chicken ,so why would the company stateon the box that it holds this many chickens when you need 4 ft.²?? Help!!

  2. redsoxs

    redsoxs Crowing

    Jul 17, 2011
    North Central Kansas
    Greetings from Kansas, meyer7, and [​IMG]! Pleased you joined our community! Your research is correct - 3 to 4 sq. ft./ bird is what is recommended to avoid stressing out the birds and giving them adequate space. The recommended space in the run is 10 sq. ft./bird. Problem is, prefab coop manufacturers don't use these guidelines and often overestimate what their coops accommodate. Sure 18 birds will likely fit in your coop....like sardines in a can. I have more chickens per sq. ft. in my coop than is recommended but my birds have a huge run and free range about half the day. So the coop is used only for egg laying and sleeping so I get away with it. You might start thinking of ways to allow them a larger run.
    The Learning Center is packed with articles discusses just the kind of thing you are asking - check it out:
    And if you'd like to chat with some MA poultry folks, find your sate thread in this link and say hello: https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/270925/find-your-states-thread
    Good luck to you and thanks for joining BYC!! [​IMG]
  3. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
    Also areas that have extremes in weather condition need a bigger coop, for the days when the flock cannot go outside. Chickens hate being crowded and the act out by bullying, feather plucking and at extremes cannibalism.
  4. meyer7

    meyer7 Hatching

    Mar 22, 2017
    Thank you for clarifying that that's what I figured. We're going to have to do something else for chicken coop because the one that we've just assembled yesterday from tractor supply blew over and tumbled down our backyard hill and completely fell apart... Yikes.. Thankfully we didn't have any chickens inside of the coop they're still just baby chicks and and their own spot In our cellar.
  5. meyer7

    meyer7 Hatching

    Mar 22, 2017
    Thank you very much for this information our winters can get cold and where we live it's very windy.
  6. Teila

    Teila Bambrook Bantams Premium Member

    G’Day from down under meyer7 [​IMG] Welcome!

    Yikes!! [​IMG] I battled with a kit coop which became two kit coops joined together for 2 years until we built one. Kit coops can serve a purpose for a short while if you only have a very small number of chickens but in the long run, they are not ideal. Rule of thumb for kit coops is usually halve the number of chickens they say it can hold and you might be close.

    I hope you enjoy being a BYC member. There are lots of friendly and very helpful folks here so not only is it overflowing with useful information it is also a great place to make friends and have some fun.

    If you would like to share pictures and stories of your flock, you have come to the right place. BYC’ers never tire of these and do not back away slowly or commence eye rolling when the photo album or home videos come out [​IMG]
  7. N F C

    N F C phooey! Premium Member Project Manager

    Dec 12, 2013

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by