Moving Hens to Smaller Home

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by seahkm, Mar 13, 2013.

  1. seahkm

    seahkm New Egg

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    Mar 13, 2013
    I'm looking for some advice on moving my flock of 6 hens. I currently live on a farm where my hens happily spend their days free-ranging about 1 of my 5 acres. However, now I'm moving to the city and while I want to take my cherished ladies with me, I'm concerned about them adapting to a more confined lifestyle. The new backyard is very small (think typical city lot) and while I will let them wander the yard while I'm home to supervise, I imagine much of the time they will be confined to a coop with an attached, secure run. I'm going to build the run as big as possible, I'm thinking I can fit 8x16, but I'm concerned they will be unhappy after their life of "freedom." Any opinions here? Will they adjust? Or will this be too hard on them and should I re-home them to another farm? I really can't bear the thought of giving them up, but their happiness and comfort is the most important thing to me...
     
  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    What breeds are they? They'll certainly be unhappy but will most likely adjust if given opportunities to roam.
    I'd try it and rehome if they don't adjust.
     
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2013
  3. cafarmgirl

    cafarmgirl Overrun With Chickens

    You'll just have to try it and see, although it certainly will be a big adjustment for them. Maybe you already have done so but I'd also check and make sure it's legal to have chickens where you are moving before you go to the time and expense of putting up your coop.
     
  4. ronott1

    ronott1 Daily Digest Guru Premium Member

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    They should adjust fine to the new place.

    Keep them in the coop\run for 3 days when you move them there. That will re program them to know that the coop is home. If they do not go in at night, keep them in just the coop for the three days.

    Good luck!
     
  5. seahkm

    seahkm New Egg

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    Mar 13, 2013
    Wow, thanks for the quick responses!

    @ ChickenCanoe, the flock consists of a Wyandotte, 2 Dominiques, 2 Welsummers, and a Buckeye - all adults. They're not totally anti-confinement, as sometimes I'm a bit late to let them out of their 10x7 run in the morning and they aren't too annoyed, but they do then eagerly head out on their daily foraging route.

    @ Cafarmgirl, Thanks for the reminder about city regulations. I did already check to confirm I could keep them - I wouldn't move anywhere where I couldn't keep hens! :)

    Sounds like the consensus is "Try it and see," so I suppose I'll do that. But if there is anyone out there who's chickens have had to "downsize," I'd be curious to hear how it went. I just really want my ladies to be happy!
     
  6. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    Actually I have 6 flocks and only 2 free range all the time but I frequently move birds between pens and they do ok.
     

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