Leghorns for a small coop

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by andham, Feb 2, 2013.

  1. andham

    andham Out Of The Brooder

    Feb 2, 2013
    I am building a chicken tractor and will have limited space. I think I will have only 3 or 4 hens. I am doing this primarily for eggs. Initially I had planned to have barred rocks and production reds.

    My question is, would it be better to go with leghorns? Am I corrects that leghorns are a little smaller than similarly producing breeds? Would this make them more comfortable in a smaller coop?

    Also, I have read that leghorns are more flighty or nervous. What is the disadvantage of this behavior?

  2. Flighty, nervous chickens won't really let you touch them. You could get bantams, you could have twice the size of birds in the same amount of space.
  3. bamachicks8

    bamachicks8 Chillin' With My Peeps

    I only have one wlh so I'm no expert but she is quite pecky compared to the slw and alot smaller but I would make sure and have at least 4 sq feet per bird at 4 hens you will need at least 16 sq feet if you can't do the math they have a square feet calculator online my temporary coop can technically hold 4-5 hens but I don't feel comfortable having more than two in there. The wlh is a great layer but can be kind of loud in comparison. The disadvantages of them being
    Pecky/flighty are you can't "love" them as easily as other chickens. You will probably get pecked allot although it doesn't really hurt so it doesn't bother me that she does it but my DD doesn't like it. You will have a harder time giving her meds etc and checking her out. Like I said I'm not sure if she is a good representative of the breed because I didn't raise her but mine conforms to this reputation
  4. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    Leghorns would be a good choice, as would sex links. They are a little smaller in my experience.
    Make your tractor as big as you can, or really limit the number of birds. Overcrowding is the number one cause of behavioral issues--pecking and cannibalism are the biggies.
  5. I give y hens a minimum of 6 feet of space b/c that's what I'm comfortable with. So in 42 square feet, you could have 7 standard chickens or 14 bantams.
  6. Mac14

    Mac14 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 21, 2012
    Northern California
    You can maybe have one of each! But I definitely recommend that you build it as big as you can. :)
  7. nok13

    nok13 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 8, 2012
    im a bit on the overcrowded side now that the shnitzels are also with my layers... i have four white leghorns who are loud, flightly but pettable and rather demanding when i come in with the feed bucket, will eat out of my hand (good for when having to catch or medicate or do a physical), i have one or two that really are loud before laying, everyday one of them squawks for about an hour, at the same hour... they dont dig soil as well, for bug prevention, but mine eat anything they are fed, from layer feed to restaraunt veggies and salads... they are easy going with newer members, i introduced a rose comb bantam hen that had never been outside of her coop, to my hens, i also have a red scrunched toed rhode islander, and they dont bother either of them... now the shnitzels (meat chickens) are there, they dont roost (too heavy i think) but sit together on the floor of the coop... during the day they all eat from two stations outside.

    the whtie leghorns were flighty in the beginning. it took about a month for them to settle down. i also clipped their wing feathers because they flew up and over the coop roof, although they did come back at night, i cant have then wondering all over our communal lawns and gardens. they lay almost every day , perfect large white eggs, they are a bit squawcky but so is that bantam, she is really loud... they have managed with no heating (never gets to 0 celsius really here), their moult was awful, the entire coop was filled with white feathers... they dont really have any outstanding personality but they are basic chickens.

    they were developed to be in close quarters and dont get stressed out, so they are good for small places. they are also light weight...

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