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Never raised chickens before

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by lisalarremore, Feb 16, 2016.

  1. lisalarremore

    lisalarremore New Egg

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    I'm interested in raising chickens in my backyard. I live in the country but I'm afraid of all the predators. Will they make it? What type of chickens are best for beginners? I'm trying to learn as much as possible before I invest.
     
  2. crapwagon

    crapwagon Out Of The Brooder

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    Predators will get them if your not careful. My biggest are hawks and opossum. If you have a secure place for your chickens you should be fine. I started with about 20 assorted bantam chickens, I live out in the country as well and wanted chickens for eggs and for some bug control. The bantams weren't the best because they were easy targets for the hawks. I ended up giving them away because I didn't want to lose anymore. I know have Black Jersey Giants and haven't lost one to a hawk. (Had them a full year now) I love this breed because they are gentle and big!

    If you get a chance I would find someone that lives close to you and see what problems they might be having. Not sure where you're located so not sure what predators you'd have. They would have experience in dealing with chicken problems in your area
     
  3. Michael OShay

    Michael OShay Chicken Obsessed

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    Welcome to BYC. Glad you decided to join our flock. Be sure and build your coop like Fort Know 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. There is a good article at http://www.the-chicken-chick.com/2013/07/11-tips-for-predator-proofing-chickens.html on predator proofing your chickens. Generally I would recommend that beginners do with one of the hardy breeds that have a well deserved reputation for being calm and gentle (good lap pets) such as Australorps, Faverolles, Orpingtons, Sussex, Cochins, Silkies, or Brahmas. Of course there can always be an exception with any breed. If high egg production is a priority, Australorps are the best layers on this list and Silkies and Cochins are the poorest layers (although they are the best brooders and mothers). If you haven't done so already, definitely check out our Learning Center at https://www.backyardchickens.com/atype/1/Learning_Center. There is lots of useful information there. Please feel free to ask any questions you may have. We are here to help in any way we can. Cheers.
     
  4. Birdrain92

    Birdrain92 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Welcome to BYC! Glad you joined the flock! Predators for chickens may include: raccoons, skunks, opossums, foxes, coyotes, red tail hawks are just some of the common ones. Easiest ways to keep them out have a roof to the coop and the run. Make sure that the base of the coop and the base of the run goes into the ground deep enough that it becomes difficult to dig under. I test my chicken wire by just falling back onto it. Don't have to test it the way I do but you want to make sure you're building the pen to keep predators out. I recommend chickens for beginners to be: Black Australorp, Sex links, Plymouth Rocks, and Rhode Island Reds seem to be the best for a beginner in my opinion.
     
  5. CTKen

    CTKen Monkey business Premium Member

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    You have some great advice already, so I'll just say a big hello!

    All the best
    CT
     
  6. BantamFan4Life

    BantamFan4Life Water Under the Bridge Premium Member

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    Welcome to BYC! I'm glad you joined us! :)
     
  7. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

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    Please check out the coops and predator sections on BYC, to learn what type of structures you need to keep your flock safe. A run with secure cover will keep out raptors, climbers, and also keep your birds from flying out.

    The gold standard of wire is 1/2" hardware cloth to replace all areas of chicken wire. It costs more, is much stronger, and will last longer than flimsy chicken wire. The openings are also small enough to keep out many sizes of predators.
     
  8. NickyKnack

    NickyKnack Love is Silkie soft! Premium Member

    Hello!
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    Welcome to BYC and the coop! There's a lot of great peeps here! Feel free to ask lots of questions. But most of all, make yourself at home. I'm so glad you decided to joined the BYC family. I look forward to seeing you around BYC. Good luck on your chicken adventure and that you get some soon. :frow
     

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