new again

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by jhat, Jan 27, 2013.

  1. jhat

    jhat Out Of The Brooder

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    hi! first time getting 19 chicks last spring...2 jersey giants, 2 rhode island reds, 2 aracunas (i think), 2 orpingtons, 2 dominiques, 2 partridge rocks, 1 golden sebright bantam hen and one rooster (patra and shabba ranks), 2 silver sebright hens and one rooster (mick jagger, lilly and izzy) plus, one we didn't order who i think is a bantam uuummm...i forget but she has feathers on her feet and her name is kinky boots lol. there is one other big hen who i forget her breed but she has a variety of grey and blonde feathers.

    anyway we live 70 miles north of nyc and it has been cold but the hens are laying like crazy. sometimes we get 18 eggs in one day. i have questions!

    ~are the hens laying too much because we have a heat light on all night? they have a converted turn out stall as a coop so we thought it would be better to keep them warmish and didn't figure out a better way but to use the heat light from when they were chicks. i would much rather them have normal day and night but i don't want them getting frost bite. any ideas?

    ~will mick and shabba kill each other this spring? they didn't get spurs yet. should we separate them into two camps? we love them both and they seem to get along fine now, but everyone says trouble will surely come and we don't want to lose either of them...or have any drama.

    ~they have a fenced yard outside the coop and we have it covered with deer netting because of a fear that a hawk will swoop down and grab one. i would rather them roam around with out a fence but would they be in danger? also, does anyone have any good ideas for building a home made fence...we have 18 ac of woods and i would rather use what we have if it makes sense.

    thanks!
    Jen and Vito
     
  2. redsoxs

    redsoxs Chicken Obsessed

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    Greetings from Kansas, jhat, and [​IMG]! Great to have you in our community! Wish mine were laying like yours. Your questions:

    -no, chickens have a laying lifespan. Some people add light to the coop to keep them laying, as they need 14 hrs. light per day to be on a regular cycle. "Too much" light just keep them laying. From what I understand, they will lay the number of eggs they will lay in a lifetime - it's just a matter of timing. Some, like myself, don't add light - figuring it's nature's way of giving them a break during the cold winter months.
    - 2 roosters for that many hens is probably about right - I think one will become dominant in the pecking order and the other submissive. If the dominant one keeps picking on the other, one may have to be removed. I think for right now they are both trying out for top dog honors.
    -your range or not to range question is age old. The benefits of free range vs. the dangers therein. Any fence you describe would have to be high enough for them not to fly over. Even then predators can get over or under. I mitigate the problem with protective dogs. Can't say I never lose a bird, but it's seldom.

    Good luck to you on your chicken journey!!
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    Welcome to BYC. Given enough space to avoid one another, Mick and Shabba may get along. Have an alternative plan in mind just in case all heck breaks loose in the spring.
     
  4. liz9910

    liz9910 Overrun With Chickens

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    [​IMG] from California!
     
  5. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

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    Hello and welcome to BYC [​IMG] Glad you joined us!
     
  6. weimarmama

    weimarmama Overrun With Chickens

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    [​IMG] & [​IMG] from Alabama. Glad you joined us.
     
  7. jhat

    jhat Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 27, 2013
    THANKS everyone for the welcomes and advice! oh...one more thing, i would like to give them non soy feed but i don't really have time to make it myself right now. where is a good value non soy maybe even organic feed i can buy online?
     
  8. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

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  9. chickenpooplady

    chickenpooplady Chillin' With My Peeps

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    [​IMG] from Highland County Ohio and God Bless!!!
     

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