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Hi! Chicken newbie with a LOT of questions.

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by Rae Scott, Feb 26, 2017.

  1. Rae Scott

    Rae Scott In the Brooder

    Feb 26, 2017
    Northeast Ohio
    Hi everyone!

    My fiance and i are just starting our chicken journey and he is basically letting me head the whole thing. So far i am loving the Black Austrolorps, buff and lavender Orpingtons and the Ayam Cemeni breeds. I want to eventually do all dual purpose breed chickens but figure the first few years we will have to do meat birds as well until the layers are no longer laying.

    I am trying to find one or 3 nice coops (prefer a prefab but willing to try to tackle DIY) it all depends on how i have to keep everyone seperated (layers, meats, roosters) i want something that will hold up to the crazy NE Ohio winters and summers and be able to maintain.

    We have some predators here, mainly possum cats, hawk and the one neighbors dog, so not zure what precautions to take for that or how big a flock we need of each or size coop and run.

  2. Pyxis

    Pyxis Hatchi Wan Kenobi Premium Member

    Mar 27, 2012
    My Coop

    You're never going to find prefab coops that will stand up to winter in Ohio - not for very long anyway. To put it bluntly, no prefab coops are good. They're tiny, they're made out of bad material, they don't hold up to the elements at all, and, even though it's a chicken coop, often they seem as if they were designed with no knowledge of chickens whatsoever.

    You're much better off building a coop than buying any type of coop like that. There are lots of good coop ideas in the Coops section of the site. How big you need the coops to be depends on how many chickens you will put in each of them.

    Nice breed choices! ACs are mostly ornamental - I just wanted to let you know, since it sounds like you want production birds. They're still great though, although I'm a little biased on that because I breed them :p
    1 person likes this.
  3. flytie

    flytie Chirping

    Mar 31, 2013
    New Jersey
    Hi there! Welcome to BYC!

    On the chickens: I have had australorps and buff orpingtons in the past and they are really quite lovely! Nice brown eggs and if you choose (I can't according to local ordinances), they would probably make good, if slightly slow-to-fill-out meat birds.
    Now, I can't tell you that you are making the wrong choice with the other breeds, because chicken keeping is a lot about preference, but in my opinion, lavender orpingtons and ayam cemani are not good starting birds. Orpingtons of all colors are awesome, but the lavender ones- at least the ones I've looked at- are pretty expensive ($25 per chick). The ayam cemani are much more expensive, going into the hundreds for just a trio of birds. If you are looking for good dual purpose birds, or a combination of meat and egg laying breeds, I would stick to the less expensive ones like rhode island reds, barred rocks, and maybe a leghorn or two.(especially as you are just starting up) This is all just personal opinion though, so don't let me saying anything stop you from getting the flock of your dreams!

    Now, I live in a very populated area. I have 0.5 acres and 2 coops. They are both basic A frames. This probably isn't ideal for anyone in less densely populated areas, though. All the predators around you would certainly be able to get under the basic, movable A frames I have. I think one of the best coop ideas I have seen is to have a dog run with a concrete bottom and put a coop in there. Put a solid netting over the top and you're guarded from most any predator. You might have to give some ground cover, as the concrete is bad for their feet, but it works for my friends and they have a bunch of coons and foxes near them.

    There are many people here that have far better input than I can possibly hope to give, but I hope you find this site and the community helpful!
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2017
    1 person likes this.
  4. Rae Scott

    Rae Scott In the Brooder

    Feb 26, 2017
    Northeast Ohio
    Yeah, we figured but we fell in love with them so i agreed to have up to 3 since their such cool birds. Lol
  5. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Flockless Premium Member

    Jan 30, 2015
    Africa - near the equator
    Hi and welcome to BYC - you have some great advice already. Personally, I would wait a while before getting expensive breeds. The reason is that it may be wise to ensure that your coop / run is totally predator proof before spending lots of money on expensive breeds. Only time will tell if your build is predator proof. Losing expensive birds to a predator would not be a pleasant learning experience.

    All the best
  6. Rae Scott

    Rae Scott In the Brooder

    Feb 26, 2017
    Northeast Ohio
    We werent planning on them right away. Maybe in a year or two but definetly planning ahead for that day now so that we know we will be able to accomodate them when the time comes.
  7. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
    Welcome to Backyard Chickens - you can pick up a lot of good info by visiting the coops & predator threads. Everything loves to eat chickens, as a responsible caretaker, it's your job to prevent that.

  8. tastyacres

    tastyacres Crowing

    Feb 23, 2017
    Waiting foe snow
  9. N F C

    N F C phooey! Premium Member Project Manager

    Dec 12, 2013

    You've already received some good advice so I'll just say hello and it's nice you joined us!
  10. redsoxs

    redsoxs Crowing

    Jul 17, 2011
    North Central Kansas
    Greetings from Kansas, Rae Scott, and [​IMG]! Great to have you with us! Good luck to you - whichever direction you go on your coop! [​IMG]

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