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Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by EggHappy, Jan 23, 2010.

  1. EggHappy

    EggHappy In the Brooder

    My name is Terrie, I'm a chicken raising-virgin, still in the research stage actually.

    This forum is a gold-mine of information and I'm tickled to see what looks like a brain-trust of experienced members!

    I'm not a city slicker, but was suburb-raised so where my inner-country girl originates from is a mystery. 20 years ago, hubby and I moved to a rural county in central Virginia and 2 years ago built a home on a 5 acre property.

    Now, we're looking to create a bit of a self-sufficient homestead, and are planning to set up a small egg-laying coop with maybe just 4 hens to start. We are in an area zoned as Rural Preservation, so we have the green-light to proceed.

    I volunteer with licensed wildlife rehabbers, so my intention is to deter predators and avoid conflict, to be proactive rather than reactive to encounters. The assortment of coop designs is overwhelming at this point, looking especially at fortification against threats. I would very much like to offer free-ranging, but have to rule that out in order to keep the chickens safe.

    Pondering lots of questions, still have a lot of posts to read here which may answer them. A few questions being:

    Is this a silly idea I wonder: taking the chickens out in the yard, one at a time, for a few minutes sometimes...just for a little running around fun?

    How frightful are chickens...our indoor dogs will most likely bee-line for the coop when taken outside and I worry about how the chickens will react to barking?

    What about hygiene...what's the procedure keeping the coop clean, do you rake up the waste daily and add it to a compost?

    Do the feeders/waterers provide food for a few days at a time, or does fresh supply need to be given daily, how many times a day?

    Guess before I get too carried away with asking newbie questions, I should do the homework eh? I do appreciate all of the information you offer here!

    ***Oops! Guess I mean how FEARFUL are chickens not how FRIGHTFUL - LOL!***
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2010

  2. paddock36

    paddock36 Songster

    Dec 24, 2008
    Ocala, Florida
    [​IMG] from Ocala, FL. I'm not an expert but I did grow up raising chickens, but it's surprising how much you forget or just don't know when you get older. As far as feed and water. That depends on what size feeder. Most of my waterers hold enough to last for several days and I have feeders that I have to fill everyday and another that holds enough for a couple of days. I check to make sure they are clean and clean them out as needed. I rake up in the area as needed and we are going to use the area as a garden (moving the chickens to another area of course) we use the rototiller to turn the soil. Also as far as the dogs, I would say that depends on the dogs and the chickens. I have two great dogs. They do not run at the chickens and the chickens are not scared of them. They won't even bother them when they are out as long as I am watching but I wouldn't trust them alone because they are dogs of course. So hopefully that helps with some of your questions. The only other thing I can say is becareful because Chickens are really addicting. I started with 6 and now I have 21 in my backyard and yes I live in a neighborhood so SHHHH! don't tell anyone.
  3. ghillie

    ghillie Hen Pecked

    Nov 13, 2008
    Colorado Springs, Co
  4. 3goodeggs

    3goodeggs pays attention sporadically

    May 22, 2009
    North Central Florida
    HOWDY back at cha!
    Plan a good sized run, make EVERYTHING as large as you can, because there WILL be more chickens in your future.
    Welcome to BYC.
    It's all an adventure.
  5. EggHappy

    EggHappy In the Brooder

    Thanks for the warm welcomes!

    Hehehe - I've heard about the addictive nature of chickens - is there a four step program in my future? 'Hello, my name is Terrie, and I'm a chicken addict.'

    A friend of a friend is a good example of this - she's gone as far as re-designing their camper into a chicken theme! I've already promised my hubbins that I will leave our RV out of this! LOL!
  6. b.hromada

    b.hromada Flock Mistress

    [​IMG] and [​IMG] from S. Florida! Glad you joined us! Enjoy!
  7. M To The Maxx

    M To The Maxx Baseball+Girls=Life

    Jul 24, 2009

  8. Sir Birdaholic

    Sir Birdaholic Night Knight

    [​IMG] From Arkansas [​IMG]
  9. chickluver:D

    chickluver:D Songster

    Jan 20, 2010
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
  10. Emzyyy

    Emzyyy Runs with Deer

    Jul 14, 2008
    Derby Kansas
    [​IMG] FROM KANSAS ! We were all chicken raising virgins once too. [​IMG]

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