Just starting


5 Years
Sep 21, 2014
I have contemplated getting chickens and have never raised any. I have a covered area 14 x 14 where I will build nesting boxes and a roosting area. I ran my plumbing so I have a faucet just outside the coop. The coop is protected on two sides. I have a huge area they can roam in but worry about predators. I have a friend who raises laying hens but I do not know if that is the way to go. He will give me as many as I want. There are just two of us. Any suggestions will be deeply appreciated.

You will need to secure your coop on all sides or the predators will get to them. Depends on what your ultimate goal is. Do you want fresh eggs for breakfast twice a week? Or non steroid/no anti biotic raised chicken for dinner? Are you looking to make money on the chickens? Show them?

Lots of options. I was new to chickens last year. I will tell you a three things I have learned.

1. They are much more complicated than I ever imagined.
2. They are a lot more work and money than I thought they would be.
3. I love raising chickens much more than I thought I ever could.

Good luck in whatever you choose. We are here to help you! Welcome to Backyard Chickens!
Welcome to BYC, Larry. Glad you decided to join our flock. There is a good article on protecting your chickens from predators at http://www.the-chicken-chick.com/2013/07/11-tips-for-predator-proofing-chickens.html. Be sure and use hardware cloth instead of chicken wire as there are just too many predators that can tear through chicken wire or squeeze through the openings in the mesh. Also make certain you have enough room in your coop and run for your chickens. The rule of thumb is 4 sq. ft. of floor space in the coop for each bird, and 10 sq. ft. of ground space in the run for each bird. Please feel free to ask any questions you may have. We are here to help in any way we can. What kind of laying hens does your friend have?
Hello there and welcome to BYC!

You need to close in all sides of your coop. Too many predators out there that want to eat your birds. This will also protect them from the elements and wind. As Michael has said, use hardware cloth only. No chicken wire on any external parts of the coop or run. It is too flimsy and can be chewed or torn apart very easily.

Good luck with your flock and if you need any help with things, feel free to ask questions. Welcome to our flock!
Welcome to BYC! Please make yourself at home and we are here to help.

Michael, Two Crows and OutPost JWD have given you good advice.

Good luck!
Welcome to BYC!

You will find a lot of good information here. Keep on asking questions and you will get many good answers.

You may also want to read the FAQ below.

Listen to your friend about predator protection and remember hardware cloth is the chicken's best friend.

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