New to this - interested in 2 chickens to raise - rural neighboorhood...HELP!

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by flipflops, Jun 19, 2017.

  1. flipflops

    flipflops Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hi guys! My husband and I are interested in 2 chickens for our backyard - we would like to purchase or build or maybe even a kit built coop/run combo and start with just 2 chicks. We live in a rural neighborhood. One neighbor on one side of us actually has 2 Add to dictionary hens! But their back yard is fenced and they let them run around. Our yard is not and we would like a nice looking coop combo to put in the back yard that is attractive but house comfortable and keep out other neighborhood animals. I have some questions:

    1. What breed - we want something as PETs first - we have 3 small dogs but all stay inside. These would be pets and next as some fresh eggs! I have been reading and really like the Australorps. We want something that is sweet and wants to be held petted and friendly.

    2. Coops - What is suggested for a budget but nice walk in style? No time to build something ourselves though.

    3. How hard is it to raise chicks? I wanted to start there so they knew us and would could have them grow up around us and our setting.

    4. Are they ok to be left for a weekend if we went out of town occasionally?

    Any other info?
     
  2. DakotaDreamer

    DakotaDreamer Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Buff orpingtons are super friendly and docile. Brahmas and barred rocks are pretty friendly as well. I don't own an australorp but have heard that they are pretty docile. I use a shed that we got off of craigslist and scrubbed clean as a coop. For two chicks this is unnecessarily big but an alternative is a doghouse with a lift up lid for you to scoop out of. You could probably find this for free on craigslist and paint it to spruce it up. As far as raising chicks goes, you will need a brooder( large plastic tupperware), heat lamp,pine shavings or hay for bedding, a feeder and a no drown waterer. A lot of these can be reused when they are older though(tupperware for cleaning, heatlamp if they are cold in winter, a flat feeder for when they are older) Cleaning them is easy with a tupperware too. I love my chicks and they are a lot of fun. That being said though, I just want to inform you that they do need to be kept inside until they are six weeks old and their food gets changed as they grow.They are not hard to take care of at all though, just a bit time consuming( maybe? an hour a day). You can leave your chickens for the weekend when full grown, but must have someone come to give them fresh water and food and check on them. This would only need to happen about once daily though and a friend of yours may love being able to spend time with them and do it for you no charge. I hope this is helpful. You will love your chickens when you get them. Good luck and be sure to post what type you get:)
     
  3. Chickassan

    Chickassan Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I vote faverolles if you want eggs and pets, they snuggle are soft and lay through winter.:)
     
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  4. flipflops

    flipflops Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I was sort of set on Australorps but you mentioned the Favrolles and I had never heard of those! They are pretty! What do you guys think? I definitely want something sweet, not broody, not aggressive.
     
  5. 3riverschick

    3riverschick Poultry Lit Chaser

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    Welcome to byc!!
    Where are you at flipflops? that would really help us help you as far as what you needed in the way of a coop and Run. basically if your birds are going to be inside for an extended time for foul weather you need four square feet per bird inside . for outside in the run you need 10 square feet per bird
    okay , and that does not include the nest box inside .
    Best ,
    Karen
     
  6. 3riverschick

    3riverschick Poultry Lit Chaser

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    If you get any rain at all in your area do yourself a favor and put a tarp over the top of your run
    it will keep the run dry and your chickens will be much happier.
     
  7. flipflops

    flipflops Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am in southern VA on the TN border. Yes we get plenty of rain. I'm hoping to get a run with a roof over all of it. We get mild winters coldest is maybe 18 degrees and that's very harsh and summers in mid 80s. Light snow occasionally.
     
  8. 3riverschick

    3riverschick Poultry Lit Chaser

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    I use an inexpensive tarp cut to fit .I buy tarp clips at Lowe's . they clip right on and act like grommets. then I buy those bungees with the red ball at the end.
    okay they go through the grommet Clips . further on down the side of the run in several uprights I've screwed in a screw or nail or something. the bungee cord goes right over the nail . it's a nice tight fit . the nice thing about it is that those bungees on four or six points hold down the tarp and will give the tarp enough give that it floats up and down just enough so it doesn't rip in the Wind. I've had my tarps like that go through 40 mile an hour winds and not not rip.
    Best ,
    Karen
     
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  9. 3riverschick

    3riverschick Poultry Lit Chaser

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    Ok I'm in Western Pennsylvania Southwest Pennsylvania so I understand what you mean okay have you thought about getting a small dog house okay and then getting on Craigslist and buying one of those 6 by 10 chain link dog runs k put the dog house in the middle of the dog run okay cover the dog run with the tarp with the bungees like I said put a pull up the center so that the water goes off to the sides and you're good to go Karen
     
  10. Chickassan

    Chickassan Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Faverolles aren't aggressive in the least very sweet birds really like to be around people. You have to watch them though just because the friendliness can get them in trouble.These guys like to sit on my backyard swing, sometimes they leave me a little room. :) 20170617_154757.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2017

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