how much does owning chickens cost?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by super sweet, Nov 17, 2014.

  1. super sweet

    super sweet New Egg

    Nov 10, 2014
    hi i'm getting my chickens very soon and i was wondering how much they would cost, including them themselves, the feed, coop, the brooder and heat lamp, and pretty much anything I'll have to buy for them.[​IMG] Thanks hope you can help!
  2. CKC Coop

    CKC Coop Out Of The Brooder

    Oct 18, 2014
    We ordered 25 babies in September (hens only). With shipping it was about $80. Feed here in Illinois is about $13 for 50 ils. which has been lasting about 2 weeks now that I am using the plastic pipe feeding system with no waste. Before, it was probably a week. The little ones eat more than the big ones it seems now that they have feathered out. Of course my big ones free range 2-3 hours a day. I paid $35 for a 3 gallon heated waterer and bought a 30 pound bag of scratch for $13 which has lasted since summer. Also I have a 40 lib. Bag of cracked corn for $9 which has also lasted since summer. I highly recommend a feeding system where the chickens cannot scratch food out or tip over container. They will waste a lot doing that. Mine don't like to then eat it off the floor very well and it's a mess. The pipe system with the y end for feeding is excellent for preventing waste and keeping food clean. It cost about $30 to build 2 for our 45 chickens. Fill it once a day and they've never run out. Before little chicks started using one, the two pipes only had to be filled every 2-3. days. We did not get a brooder for our chicks. We kept them in the basement for 2-3 weeks under a heat lamp, which after a few days we just used a regular 60 watt bulb in. After they got big enough to fly up and roost on their box, they went outside in a small 4 hen coop purchased at Farm and Home...about $300. We turned a heat light on at night until they feathered out. They outgrew this a couple of weeks ago (about 8 weeks old). Now they are in the big coop partitioned off. How much you spend on your coop can vary so much. You could build your own and save a ton, or buy one. You can reuse materials, pallets, etc. and be creative. There are some good ideas online. One thing I can tell you is that they grow incredibly fast and you run out of time very quickly. We got our chickens before the coop and we were in panic mode trying to get everything done. Whatever amount you spend on your chickens will come back to you triple though by how much they will entertain you. There is no price tag for that! Best of luck and ENJOY!
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