Is this a good idea?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by gpamela3499, Feb 26, 2009.

  1. gpamela3499

    gpamela3499 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 26, 2009
    Near San Fran Ca
    My son's preschool at Los Medanos College in Pittsburg Ca. is studying farm animals.
    Someone in town is selling a rooster (Rhode Island Red) and a hen(different breed) for $15. I thought that I would get the chickens share them with the preschool and keep them for pets and eggs. Is this a good idea?
    We are responsible pet owners we do have a three cats, a hermit crab, and some fish. The cats are well cared for fixed shots etc.

    I am planning to look at your site and other to make sure the chickens are provided with the basics.
    Can we get eggs? Will these chickens make good pets? How long do chickens live? Can old chickens lay eggs?

    Any help or advise would be most appreciated.
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2009
  2. Chic's Chickens

    Chic's Chickens Out Of The Brooder

    Feb 15, 2009
    Monroe, WA
    Well, this site is very helpful. I just got 4 chicks, hopefully hens, for a backyard-urban-coop-egg-laying-operation. Chickens can live up to 20 years! Roosters are loud and crow ALL the time. Consider this carefully....
  3. gpamela3499

    gpamela3499 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 26, 2009
    Near San Fran Ca
    Yes neighbors have chickens. I have lived with chickens in the country but this is a suburban area.
    What I really want is a pet that will lay eggs.
    If I get chicks from the store will I get a lot off roosters?
    I need a very big agressive chicken to fight the cats off if they ever get in the pen, won't I?
    I looking to see about city laws too.
    Yeah 20 years is a long time. Are there a lot of Vet costs?
    Dogs are sometimes cruelly debarked can a rooster be decrowed? Just courious.
  4. PortageGirl

    PortageGirl Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 8, 2008
    Portage County, Ohio
    First off, Happy to meet you! Glad you're here!! [​IMG] Hope you enjoy our company!! [​IMG] WELCOME to BYC!!!

    You can usually order all pullets if you get chicks from a hatchery. You might still get an accidental cockerel, but they're usually pretty good. If you order 'straight run' you will probably get more cockerels than pullets so it's really worth ordering pullets.

    Cats don't often bother grown hens, just keep an eye on them, see how both the hens AND the cats act... most tame cats eye chickens very suspiciosly and decide to ignore them... all their own idea of course, nothing to do with size and potential embarassment if the other cats see that huge honking bird beating them up! No, not that at all.

    A feral cat might try it, but stray dogs, raccoons, opossums are always a danger.

    Read here a bit, and check on the laws in your town. Chickens don't often live till their 20, that's the very upper limit I'd say, probably 8 is elderly for most laying hens. They lay eggs very well till their 2 or so, then they slow down. Very prolific layers will give you 5 or possibly 6 a week, but that's a LOT, many will give you 3 a week, beyond 1.5 to 2 years, you may get only a couple a week, and so on.

    You won't need the vet often, or quite possibly at all, but it's best to find a vet ahead of time who will treat chickens if you're worried about that. Really, there's a LOT of chickeny issues you can learn to handle yourself.

    Read on!!
  5. gpamela3499

    gpamela3499 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 26, 2009
    Near San Fran Ca
    Do you think it is a good idea to get the grown pair that was advertized in the paper?[​IMG]
  6. #1California Chick

    #1California Chick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 5, 2008
    SF Bay Area
    Generally speaking, you would want to have one Rooster for 6 to 10 hens. One on one is going to be very rough on the hen. Search "rooster problems" ( use the search in the blue line up above)
  7. gpamela3499

    gpamela3499 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 26, 2009
    Near San Fran Ca
    Thanks a bunch!!!
  8. AngieChick

    AngieChick Poultry Elitist

    If it were me, I would pass on the pair and get some baby girls instead (pullets). They are beginning to appear in feed stores, if you call around you can find out when to expect some in your area. They will need a lamp for heat and some kind of brooder (many just use a big box). You can read up in the raising chicks area of BYC and see if it suits your family. Chicks are so cute and fun, I wouldn't trade it. Starting with chicks would also buy you some time to set up a coop/run for them for when they are old enough to leave the brooder. Also, if you handle them while raising them up, they will be friendlier as adults.
  9. gpamela3499

    gpamela3499 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 26, 2009
    Near San Fran Ca
    I thank you very much.
    I think I will get some pullets. There is a feed store locally. The babies will be cute for Easter although that is not my first reason for getting them. I think moving slower on the coop and everything will be better as well. Thanks so much
    Lastly the preschoolers might find the babies less intimidating. Finally my neighbors might like hens better (you know they make the breakfast not wake for breakfast)
    any ideas about breeds
    My cats are mousers and catch wild birds
    Of course even I would not mess with a mean hen.
  10. tinners204

    tinners204 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 12, 2008
    Personally I like the Black Ostralorps. Nice gentle bird. Great layers of big brown eggs.

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