New to Chicks and chickens!

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by PerryChick67, Mar 5, 2012.

  1. PerryChick67

    PerryChick67 Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 5, 2012
    Hi. I've never raised chicks or chickens, but want to start. I've kind of decided on 6 pullets and love the looks and description of Buff Orpingtons. My husband was going to build a coop and run...now he wants me to look at a portable coop first to "see how it goes" before he tries to build something permanent. Any feedback positive or negative on this? I am definitely NOT a carpenter so I can't build my own and the prices on the prebuilt ones are prohibitive. Thanks!
     
  2. nurse_turtle

    nurse_turtle Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 28, 2011
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    Just watch out for manufacturers claims. Some claim their coop can hold "X" number of chickens when, in fact, it can hold much less. The recommended minimum square feet per standard chicken is 4 square feet per bird. For 6 orpington hens, you will need a coop with 24 square feet of space and the smaller portable coops out there could hold 2-3 comfortably. That minimum 4 sq ft of coop space applies if each bird has 10 sq ft of run space. More space = happier, healthier chickens. Also, you're gonna want more.
     
  3. Debbiedodo

    Debbiedodo Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 21, 2011
    White Cloud, MI
    Maybe you could start out with a hoop house. It will be fine for the summer and depending on where you live, get you through the winter too. By then you may find out you want more than 6 chickens and build a bigger coop then origionally planned. Just search for hoop coops, etc. You will get lots of pictures. Good luck. I wish my coop was bigger.
     
  4. PerryChick67

    PerryChick67 Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 5, 2012
    Thanks for the suggestions, but Barry seems to be getting more into the idea of building a coop. He has a diagram drawn and parts list that he is working on. We picked a site out back as well.
     
  5. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    You'll love your Buff Orps.

    Welcome to BYC!!!!
     
  6. scorwin

    scorwin Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 4, 2011
    I'm brand new too. My chicks are ordered and are due to arrive the week of May 21st. I didn't realize how early I should have ordered!! I have 6 chicks coming. (4 different breeds ) A barred plymouthrock, 2 buff orpintons. 1 silver laced wyandotte and 2 easter eggers. I have to make a brooding pen and a friend of mine is just starting on my coop. I've wanted chickens for over a year and am excited but nervous! I don't know why. I have horses and dogs. But chicks seem so vulnerable.
     
  7. ghostwolf

    ghostwolf Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 31, 2011
    East Chatham, NY
    On my fourth year of chickens and the second year of hatching our own. I have Barred Rocks and Buffs and I love them both. Happy chicken raising. [​IMG]
     
  8. PerryChick67

    PerryChick67 Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 5, 2012
    Had the chicks outside in the sun in the yard for the first time this afternoon. They are 3 weeks old today. It took them awhile to get off of me and onto the grass, but they seemed to really enjoy it then! Nope, didn't have my phone with me for pics.
     
  9. mgarrett

    mgarrett Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 14, 2012
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    I am new to this just like you are, but if you're getting 6 pullets I would personally recommend getting a couple different breeds at least. About a month ago I got my first chicks (2 buff orpingtons and 1 silver laced wyandotte), and while the orpingtons are great (you can't go wrong with them from what it seems), I was told that my silver-laced wyandotte would probably be less friendly, more flighty, and louder. However, I have found the complete opposite to be true. My SLW is easily the most friendly, was the first to trust me and eat from my hand, and while she is flighty as far as wanting to perch more often and tries to fly around a bit, she has been wonderful so far. I am glad I got her instead of 3 buff orpington's- plus it's much easier to tell them apart when they don't look the same! I would love to get another Wyandotte (maybe gold) and some Rhode Island Red's.

    Also, everyone is right about you wanting more. I was sure 3 would be the perfect amount for me, but now I'm desperately wishing I had built a bigger coop because I already have the itching for more! So keep that in mind when building/buying your coop! Goodluck with your chicks- I'm having a lot of fun with mine!
     
  10. dadtochickenfan

    dadtochickenfan Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 11, 2011
    I know people who got started with a dog house and a run. I built a chicken tractor. Trouble is, it was so heavy it was a hassle moving it. If you are looking for a permanent place, any shed design online will work.
     

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