How much?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by caiusthechicken, Dec 19, 2013.

  1. caiusthechicken

    caiusthechicken New Egg

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    Dec 19, 2013
    Hey guys, I am doing research and really interested in starting a decent coop. Looking to having an amount of chickens that is decent and manageable. Probably 5-8 hens. My question is how much on average will I have to spend on monthly cost such as food and renewing the bedding? Or any other costs that you experienced chicken farmers have come across.

    Thanks,
    ChickenCaius
     
  2. foreverlearning

    foreverlearning Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The costs depend on what you choose to use in your coop and what you have available to you. I use sand in my coop so my costs for that are $4-$8 a year. I scoop it with a kitty litter scoop and it stays good but I dump it in front of the coop once a year and replace. The only reason I dump it out of the coop is because the rains here degrade the ground in front of the coop. Pine shavings will run you the most if you replace rather then using the deep litter method because they average $5-$6 a bag and have to be replaced often. Feed from something like Tractor Supply will run you between $15-$20 a 50# bag whereas a feed mill will cost $8-$9 for the same size. A feed mill will also discount large amounts where TSC will not. You don't want to go too cheap on the water system as we all have our favorites and that is one of the biggest pains we have to deal with. You have to think about transporting it to the coop, if it will freeze in the winter, how much it will hold/ how often do you have to fill it, how messy are your chickens (mine can't use the nipples because they grab it and shake making a pond on the coop floor, but most are fine with them.), will you be adding acv (no metal containers if you do), and how do you want to hold it up (I like mounted on the wall for a smaller coop but there are also ones that go on the ground and ones that hang in the center of the coop. You want to keep on hand poultry dust or sevin 5%, vitamin supplement for water (sav a chick), and a good axe. They will cost less then $20 for all. How much feed they consume will depend on you and the season. I free range with a always full feeder for 12 chickens. In the spring summer and fall I go threw one 50# bag every 4 months of feed, but in the winter I go threw one a month. Needless to say I have plenty of bugs here for ranging. The less they can find themselves the more it will cost you. The most cost you will find are in starting with the coop and in the bedding you choose.
     
  3. caiusthechicken

    caiusthechicken New Egg

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    Dec 19, 2013
    Is there a website where I could order this feed mill? Thanks though this gives me a much better idea of where to start
     
  4. foreverlearning

    foreverlearning Chillin' With My Peeps

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    A feed mill is a local farm supply store that grows, grinds, and bags feed as well. If you go to a big farm supply store like Tractor Supply and ask they should have an idea as to where the local feed mills are. Also, they should be listed in the yellow pages. If you have a co-op in your area they would know as well. They are hard to spot if you don't know they are there, mine looks like a closed building behind a police station. When I found it I found out that because everyone uses the drive threw they don't turn on the lights inside until someone goes in there. They save a lot of money and keep feed costs low that way. Farmers markets also know where they are because they rely on many things that they sell to produce their crops.
     

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