Hi! My husband is looking for a new job and we're hoping to leave the city (NYC, what other city is there? ) and move upstate by an hour or two. If we're able to find a place with space for chickens, I'd like to get some, as my kids and husband are ovolacto and eat more eggs than the average family. I may end up getting some meat chickens for myself, too, but only if I can find someone to process them for me. Eating them is hard enough! *sigh* I'm reading everything online I can get my virtual hands on and it all seems very confusing. I'm not really sure where to start other than waiting until I have a place to figure out what I need in terms of housing. But I have a ton of questions.... - Do the silver laced wyandottes really lay through the winter? (NYS) - Are white birds really easier to pluck? - How do you really figure out how many chickens your family needs? Half a dozen eggs a day would cover our family, so I was thinking 8-10 hens but extras are always good -- my extended family could eat as many eggs as we give them. - If you're planning to slaughter the meat birds at 4-10 weeks (depending on the kind) then do they really need the full amount of roaming space? - How do you know how many birds you can have per square foot of roaming in order to mimnimize damage to the ground? I'll be renting and if we ruin the yard, the owners'll be annoyed. Can I somehow keep them in an unfenced yard? If they roam the yard, how poopy will the ground be? How nasty is the poop? My MIL says it's VILE.... - Other than 4H, which is for kids, are there any chicken raising clubs? - Am I better getting chickens from online or my local feed store? - How aggressive are roos really? I have four small children. - How many roos do I need to keep my chickens in line, safer from predators, etc? One per ten? One per twenty five? How do I prevent inbreeding if we let any hatch? - What time do they start crowing & is it REALLY that annoying? - If I let a fertilized chicken sit, either deliberately or not, how long before it's not edible? Should I assume that all eggs within range of a rooster are viable? - How expensive is it to have my chickens processed for me? Does that include plucking? How do I know the chickens are being treated humanely? - What do you wish you knew before you started? TY!!!!!!!