Is this a do-able plan?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by birdlover, Nov 23, 2011.

  1. birdlover

    birdlover Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 11, 2007
    Northern Va.
    Hi there! I haven't had chickens for a couple of years and really, REALLY want to get some again...just 2 or 3 for pets. I was thinking, if I got bantams, could I keep them in a very large dog crate in my basement at night and let them outside during the day? I did this once before when I first got chickens and had 2 silkies and a OEGB although they stayed in a playpen in the basement, not a dog crate. No one got sick but, then, a fox got them the beginning of Jan. [​IMG] so they didn't have that many cold months to deal with. That was way back in 2003 and it was a hard lesson to learn but I've learned all about predators since then and what to do so they don't get eaten. (And if you're wondering why I don't just put them in our old coop...my husband turned it into his personal storage place!! grrr) Anyway, what do you think? Our basement is cold in the winter but not as cold as it is outside. Thanks for your opinions!
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2011
  2. tinydancer87

    tinydancer87 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 5, 2011
    SE Georgia
    I think you could, as long as their cage got cleaned out every day. If the bantams are really small, like Old English Game Bantams, or d'uccle, you could let them sleep in a large parrot cage with a perch and covered with a blanket. Then you could slide the tray out of the bottom to change their newspaper daily. I kept my little d'uccle in an old parrot cage when she had a fowl pox crust over her eye, she did great, loved the wooden parrot perch and even pecked at the parrot toy.

    Craigslist usually has some bird cages, you could buy a new one but they can be pricy.

    ETA: The cage wouldn't even have to go in the basement, you could put it in a spare bedroom or the corner of the kitchen or living room. It would really not take up alot of room, and the birds could have warmer surroundings.
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2011
  3. birdlover

    birdlover Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 11, 2007
    Northern Va.
    Thanks for your reply!! I was thinking "basement" because I was trying to keep the temperature difference to a minimum when I let them outside during the day in the winter. I didn't want to keep them in the house during the day. I know people do but I think chickens are a lot happier when they can dig and scratch in the yard. [​IMG]
     
  4. tinydancer87

    tinydancer87 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 5, 2011
    SE Georgia
    You do have a point with the basement temperature thing. It definitely wouldn't hurt them to sleep in the basement.

    And yes, chickens are much happier being outside during the day.

    I was thinking that a rabbit-hutch type setup, with a catch-tray underneath for poop, might work even better. I know they sell them at pet stores, but I don't think it would be too hard to build something like that.
     
  5. WoodlandWoman

    WoodlandWoman Overrun With Chickens

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    May 8, 2007
    Wisconsin
    You could also use something like a kiddy pool, with a circle of fencing or welded wire around it. That would give them more space and might contain the litter a little better.

    Maybe your husband would give up the coop, once you already had chickens in the household again. Maybe he needs Santa to bring him a storage shed of his own for Christmas! [​IMG]
     
  6. birdlover

    birdlover Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 11, 2007
    Northern Va.
    Good idea! I wish I still had my playpen. It was sooo useful for so many things but I threw it out when I gave away my flock. Maybe I can find one at Goodwill. If not, the pool is a great idea.
     
  7. kota1369

    kota1369 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 17, 2009
    Kansas City, MO
    Quote:This is a really good idea. And it would not take up much room in the basement. I do not think it is wise to bring them in the house. you want them to acclimate to your temps. it gets cold where you live to so you want them to grow in some good feathers. My chickens coop is a little tykes house with a perch put in it. Its already concidered insulated, and easy to secure against preditors if need be. I can tell you from experiance, I brought mine into my garage out of my own parinoia and they hated it and got nasty with us. They also couldnt handle the days outside as the garage was alot warmer (kept at 40 degrees or so). not good when your chickens want to go outside and its 10 degrees......... NOT good for the lungs!
    Good luck to you. You will figure out what is best for them.
     

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