Need help setting up a new group of chickens

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by chickenlover847, Sep 30, 2014.

  1. chickenlover847

    chickenlover847 In the Brooder

    Jun 16, 2014
    north texas
    Hi my son's bday is just around the corner and he wants chickens (well he wanted a horse but WOW EXPENSIVE LOL) anyways I'm just wondering here at tsc they have chain link dog runs. Cheaper than coops and there bigger would that work? And does 6 sound like a good number for the chickens. I'm sure he's committed to this he currently has 2 alpine female goats and he spoils them and 1 rooster that insists he need feed costing $17 a bag lol
  2. Yorkshire Coop

    Yorkshire Coop Moderator

    Aug 16, 2014
    Yorkshire, UK
    My Coop
    Yes you are right horses are expensive things I have one and that's enough for me!!!
    Sounds good 6 to start with im sure the flock will be added to though overtime. I don't have experience of chain link but I can't see why not. One of my runs is a modified dog run and I don't have any problems with it.
    Good luck to your son with his future chicken keeping sounds like they will have the life of Riley :lol:
  3. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    $17 for 50# of chicken feed is not out of line, especially if you want lots of eggs.
    ....more than one rooster can cause problems.
    He probably knows this but.... keep the goats away from the chicken feed, it can make them sick.
  4. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Crowing

    Nov 12, 2009
    western South Dakota
    Even though you have not given the dimensions, I tend to think 6 in a dog run would be very crowded. Even with the dog run, you will need some kind of coop for night-time shelter. More space makes for happier hens, and while chicks are tiny, they grow and need more space.

    I think I would go with 4, it is surprising how many eggs 4 hens will produce, if there is just two or three in you family, you will have more than enough.

    Chickens are not really like horses, in that you have the same birds forever, but rather you have a flock for the long term, and add and lose hens as time goes on. 2.5 - 3.5 years is common. There are some that live for a long time as in more than 5 years, but generally not the rule.

    It is a marvelous hobby, I hope he enjoys it for years to come.

    Mrs K
  5. chickenlover847

    chickenlover847 In the Brooder

    Jun 16, 2014
    north texas
    I think i would go with a 10x10x6 dog run
  6. chickenlover847

    chickenlover847 In the Brooder

    Jun 16, 2014
    north texas
    No $17 for 10lb of feed although with more chickens i think it'll be better to buy nutrena nature wise
  7. aatx

    aatx Songster

    Mar 19, 2014
    Erath County, Texas
    Are you asking if you can use the chain link dog pen to serve as both the coop and the run? As a general rule of thumb, you want about 10 sq ft per bird of run space and 4 sq ft per bird in the coop (2-3 sq ft if they are bantam sized). If you went with the 10 x 10 (100 sq ft), I wouldn't go with more than 6-7 full size chickens. When you start adding in food water, a coop with roosts and nest boxes, etc., the area quickly shrinks. Also, they will need room to fly up to the roosts and to jump down, so you'll need a larger coop than you may think.

    Chain link would hold the chickens in, but it would not be predator proof, especially to digging, without some modification.

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