Official BYC Poll: How Long Have You Been Keeping Chickens?

How Long Have You Been Keeping Chickens?

  • I haven’t started yet

    Votes: 4 1.0%
  • Less than a year

    Votes: 88 22.3%
  • 1-2 years

    Votes: 88 22.3%
  • 3-4 years

    Votes: 53 13.4%
  • 5-6 years

    Votes: 44 11.1%
  • 7-8 years

    Votes: 25 6.3%
  • 9-10 years

    Votes: 22 5.6%
  • 11-14 years

    Votes: 20 5.1%
  • 15-19 years

    Votes: 16 4.1%
  • 20-29 years

    Votes: 9 2.3%
  • 30+ years

    Votes: 25 6.3%
  • I used to, but dont anymore (please tell us why in a reply below)

    Votes: 1 0.3%

  • Total voters
    395

SayChicken

Chirping
Jun 16, 2021
40
102
76
I've had birds my whole life. My very 1st chicken fell off of one of those trucks headed for the slaughter house. I kept the white chicken in my garage, I was 8 yrs old & named her Fluff. She was so sweet, put up with me giving her a bath, drying her off, even sitting on my lap to be fussed over and hugged. She was very active and even played roll the ball with me. Her favorite game was find the crickets of course. Unfortunately, a month later, instead of laying eggs, SHE turned out to be a HE & began crowing. In that neighborhood that was a big No No, so we found Mr. Fluff a farm home. Many decades later, I moved to a place with the proper zoning, where I could finally have chickens! I'd wanted chickens for a long, long time, so this was wonderful & very exciting! My dad & I built a coop together & I cherish those memories, because we didn't know at that time it would be the last thing he'd build. Those beloved chickens & my pigeons kept me grounded during a difficult time, during my father's illness. They've given me unconditional love & affection, wanting to sit on my lap or be fussed over & hugged. They've made smile & laugh every single day. During a time of grief & then pandemic, they've been my constant, my best friends. During Covid19 shut down, their eggs became a source of income, allowing me to buy food, who could've thought a fun hobby could sustain us?Pandemic also gave me time to hatch 10 eggs, what precious little fuzz puffs! I love them so much still! I started with 2 Barred Rocks & have had up to 40, a mix of RIR, Wyandottes, Buff Orpingtons, Ameracaunas, Comet & Red Star, White Rock, a few rescued mixes, one sweetheart looks like Buff Delaware. All have names, some were older rescues, they will all live good lives & die of old age. I've only had chickens for about 7 yrs, but I can't imagine my life without them. ❤
Gorgeous pictures!! Lucky chickens
 

BleuSaphir

Crowing
9 Years
Oct 24, 2012
1,083
2,068
391
Santa Clarita, CA
I started at 2005. At the end of being age 12. I started with a pair of Sebright bantams. Bought two new chicks. Both did not make their journey for unknown reasons. I bought another chick during when one previous one died as replacement. So I ended up with just 3. Kept it that way since. During 2009…I made the decision to give up on my chickens. Living with neighbors unruly dogs was hard to deal with! The wooden fence post were old and tilted severely toward my side from the dogs constant banging and loud obnoxious barking. It was too much for me to attempted feed, clean, and let them out! 3 years of moving them to side of the yard to deal with the neighbor dogs was too much for me. I had enough of the neighbor dogs. I had fears the dogs would break the fence post and invade the yard. They have gotten into our yard in the past. I really started to missed the old location of the coop. I didn’t have to deal with the neighbor dogs. I was more upset growing up with my mom. It was her idea to move the coop to where it used to stand. I’m glad she wanted a backyard redo. But I’m not sure why my parent back then couldn’t just spend more to replace the fence post with fresh new wooden fence on our unruly neighbor side.
My dad wouldn’t help me and thought I was being a baby. That was my last straw too. I have gave away to a farm. That was my saddest day ever.

Talking to our neighbor didn’t help. Lazy and unconcern people. They don’t care for their dogs. They do not make them walk on lease on neighborhood or parks. Their kids rarely play with them. They kept their dog poo at the corner of their yard PILED UP with flies!!! The dogs are literally kept outside in the HOT baking sun and cold winters. Thank god they moved out. They were a nightmare to deal with! I have a new neighbor who bought the house. I adore her more than old neighbor.

I am chickenless. My relationship with my family are not exactly good with resentment from the past and frustration regarding keeping chickens again. One day to have my own place, that will be the day to have chickens again.
 

Liz Birdlover

Crowing
Jan 6, 2018
1,256
4,260
396
Delaware, USA
I started at 2005. At the end of being age 12. I started with a pair of Sebright bantams. Bought two new chicks. Both did not make their journey for unknown reasons. I bought another chick during when one previous one died as replacement. So I ended up with just 3. Kept it that way since. During 2009…I made the decision to give up on my chickens. Living with neighbors unruly dogs was hard to deal with! The wooden fence post were old and tilted severely toward my side from the dogs constant banging and loud obnoxious barking. It was too much for me to attempted feed, clean, and let them out! 3 years of moving them to side of the yard to deal with the neighbor dogs was too much for me. I had enough of the neighbor dogs. I had fears the dogs would break the fence post and invade the yard. They have gotten into our yard in the past. I really started to missed the old location of the coop. I didn’t have to deal with the neighbor dogs. I was more upset growing up with my mom. It was her idea to move the coop to where it used to stand. I’m glad she wanted a backyard redo. But I’m not sure why my parent back then couldn’t just spend more to replace the fence post with fresh new wooden fence on our unruly neighbor side.
My dad wouldn’t help me and thought I was being a baby. That was my last straw too. I have gave away to a farm. That was my saddest day ever.

Talking to our neighbor didn’t help. Lazy and unconcern people. They don’t care for their dogs. They do not make them walk on lease on neighborhood or parks. Their kids rarely play with them. They kept their dog poo at the corner of their yard PILED UP with flies!!! The dogs are literally kept outside in the HOT baking sun and cold winters. Thank god they moved out. They were a nightmare to deal with! I have a new neighbor who bought the house. I adore her more than old neighbor.

I am chickenless. My relationship with my family are not exactly good with resentment from the past and frustration regarding keeping chickens again. One day to have my own place, that will be the day to have chickens again.
It took me decades to finally move to place where I could have chickens...if it's your goal, you will make it happen! Best of luck getting there, you can do it! 👍
 

Ryebi

In the Brooder
Dec 28, 2020
17
34
36
I put 15-19 years.
It all started with 6 Mille Fleur D'uccles (5 hens and a roo) I ordered online and a pair of Easter Egger hens I got from a nearby feed store.

Have tried the other following breeds with various successes and likes/dislikes for various reasons:
Rhode Island reds, Plymouth Rocks, Derbyshire Redcap, Old English Game Bantams, Silkies, Sultans, more Easter Eggers, Australorp, Cornish X, Polish, Salmon Faverolles, and Black Copper Marans.

Have also tried other poultry with Quail, Guineas, Turkey, Pekin Duck, Cayuga ducks, Pilgrim Geese, Muscovy Ducks, African Geese, and even had an Emu for a bit.

Lived at my last farm for 11 years and brought my birds with me when I moved to the current location in the fall of 2016. At my most populous I had just under 80 birds at a single time.

I recently sold the majority of my chickens (11 Salmon Faverolles, 1 easter egger) and now just have 6 Black Copper Marans (1 roo, 5 hens). I plan to age these birds out and not acquire more in the future so my poll answer will be very different in a few more years, haha. I just have always had a preference for ducks/geese over chickens.

I presently have 10 Muscovies and about 17 Pekin (some are for meat so that number will be a lot smaller next month). I plan to get Pilgrims and Cayugas again next year and get Khakis after my next meat harvest clears up space.
 

Angel07

Songster
Mar 11, 2021
288
748
131
Victoria, Australia
We’ve had them since we moved to this house when I was only 2. We’ve had them since then with maybe one year tallied up that we didn’t have any due to foxes taking them. We used to have 400 when I was about 5-6. Now we’re back at 5 chooks and hoping for a rooster late this year or early next year.
 
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Birdsonghill

Songster
Feb 1, 2021
345
1,727
223
West Tennessee
I have had a chicken or a few dozen , most years, since 1955, as a child. Also guineas, turkeys, ducks and geese, at times. I just started a new flock this year and am enjoying them as much as the first time! Murray McMurray Hatchery helped start most of my flocks, after our local hatchery shutdown in the early 1970's. I also have purchased birds from several other hatcheries and local sources. I have usually obtained new varieties each time I start a new flock, for the diversity of experiences. I have experienced many varieties now! But hopefully ,more to come!
 

Liz Birdlover

Crowing
Jan 6, 2018
1,256
4,260
396
Delaware, USA
Almost 17 weeks. Yeah, total newbie!!! Most days are very enjoyable. I am a bit concerned, though, about having less freedom for spontaneous get-a-ways.
I took a 4 day long wknd recently & set all chickens & Homing Pigeons up with extra feed & water, I got the 5 gallon waterers & large feeders at Tractor Supply. I have friends that keep turkeys, ducks & chickens, they stopped by to let me know all was fine. No one ran out of water or feed! I could've been gone for 6 days if needed.

Chickens and birds in general are easier than cats & dogs & turtles in my opinion, and I've had them all. If you set it up well ahead of time & ask someone familiar with keeping chickens to stop in, it should be fine.

When my friends went camping, I stopped in to feed their flock, cats, dogs, fish, scoop litter & freshen all the duck pools. Trade farm sitting with a friend, It can work!

Here is a pic of my friend's turkey, Jake, he is awesome! You can pet this guy on the head or even give him a hug. He follows me everywhere as I tend to all of the flock. His mate is sweet, too. I will be adding turkeys to my flock next year. House sitting for their farm critters is like a mini vacation to a petting zoo! Just as friendly as my own flock at home. I love it!
 

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