I think I need a shopping list...

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by SparksNV, Jul 10, 2010.

  1. SparksNV

    SparksNV Songster

    Jun 13, 2010
    Spanish Springs, NV
    First let me explain - I am an RN (as is my dh) - 95% of being an RN is being prepared for whatever "might" happen - then you have the tools to take care of that situation. So, just like being the girl scout I was and the nurse I am, I want to be prepared:

    Once the coop is finished (probably mid to late august), What all would you recommend to have before I bring my chickens home? The coop is 8x4 with a dirt run of 20x15. I plan on getting 6 pullets.

    1. Pine shavings - how much?
    2. Water & feed trays - do I put them inside or outside coop - or both?
    3. Food grade DE - how much?
    4. Feed - what kind, how much?
    5. ???

    What should be in my first aid kit?

    1. Neosporin
    2. Hydrogen Peroxide
    3. ???

    What else???

    Thanks for any input!!!
  2. The Chicken Lady

    The Chicken Lady Moderator Staff Member 10 Years

    Apr 21, 2008
    West Michigan
  3. rebecky1305

    rebecky1305 Songster

    Aug 19, 2009
    Lansing, MI
    I have 5 pullets and 3 ducks. I used to keep the feed and water in the coop with the door open all day long so they can access as needed. Now I have ducks with my chickens so I keep the feed and water in the run (its covered). I started out with commercial feeders then I made my own feeders and waterers out of 5 gallon buckets. I fed them chick starter until I got ducks. Now they get Flock Raiser which both can eat. They will get this until they start laying then I will feed them Layena. A 25 pound bag lasts me about two weeks because I cannot let them out to free range. I do supplement with weeds from the garden and my granddaughters love to give them bugs and worms I buy the large cube of pine shavings from our farm store. Are you going to use the deep litter method or clean out more often? My coop is 4x5 and I clean it out about once a month. I go through one cube of shavings (about $6.00) every two to three months.
  4. AccioSarah

    AccioSarah Songster

    Apr 21, 2010
    San Juan, Puerto Rico
    I love a fellow girl scout state of mind! I always have to be prepared... including when I just go out with my purse. My family calls it "The Magical Bag of everything". And they mean everything! ;D

    I am not very experienced in the ways of chicken, so I will also be watching your forum as people answer your questions-
    But I am also going to try to answer the ones I know! [​IMG]

    1. Pine shavings - I usually buy a big 40lb block at a time, and then fill up the bottom of the coop. Every couple of weeks I take out the soiled shavings and put in a fresh layer. Everyone does it differently though! I would say a 40lb block lasts me about a month and a half for my 4x7 coop.
    2. Water & feed trays - If you have room- I would place them inside. It helps with bug control and makes clean-up easier. I also like knowing that I can keep them in during storms and they will still have access to food and water.
    3. Food grade DE - This I don't know much about...
    4. Feed - I use Local Organic feed- and I let them feed themselves. They always have access to it, and seem to control themselves rather well.
    5. GRIT!! You will want this in a few sizes, starting with parakeet grit when they are young, and layer grit when they are older. Grit is rocks, it's what a chicken uses to grind up their food in their crops.
    6. Oyster shells- you don't have to worry about this until they begin to lay, but this is the calcium they will need to produce strong eggshells.

    For the first aid kit I would also add Quik stop- a blood clotting aid that is used when clipping dog's or cats toenails and the quik of their nail is also cut. This is handy if you clip your chickens feathers or nails- or if your girls manage to cut their toes on accident.
    This is a good reference for more information on avian first aid.

    You seem pretty well prepared! The only other things I would recommend having on hand are... water proof tubs to hold your shavings, spare food, etc etc if you don't have room inside the coop. I have two that are just outside my coop that I got from target that work VERY well. Other odds and ends are: Apple cider vinegar, grit in various sizes, Sunflower seeds (during the winter, good to put on the ground so they have something to scratch for)... and that's all I can think of right now!!

    Good luck to you!!
  5. SparksNV

    SparksNV Songster

    Jun 13, 2010
    Spanish Springs, NV
    thanks for the suggestions so far!! Keep 'em coming!
  6. HorseFeatherz NV

    HorseFeatherz NV Eggink Chickens

    [​IMG] SparksNV

    Things I would add:

    Sevin dust 5% (lowes on oddie has it, home depot does not) I also have Poly Vi Sol infant vitamins (non iron formula) and neosporin (without pain relief - no 'caines as they are deadly to birds).

    My coop has a no floor, or sand/dirt floor. I use shavings in the winter and in spring/summer/fall just the ground and rake out the floor once a week or so. I also put a small bit of grass hay on the floor for scratching thru, all year round - I have horses so have it around. You can ask at your feed store what they do with their hay sweepings and if you can get a bag - if you do not have hay for critters already.

    If you drink juice or milk in plastic jugs - I save these, rinse, fill with water and freeze. Once frozen I can put them in the coop in the morning to help keep it cool, or in their shade areas.

    Metal garbage cans to hold your feed and scratch - the rodents are plentiful.

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