Raising Chickens in Florida

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by claydoctor, Jan 7, 2009.

  1. claydoctor

    claydoctor New Egg

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    Jan 7, 2009
    I live in Pinellas County (west central Florida). I want to start owning chickens for eggs, and was wondering if someone could suggest a particular breed that would do well in our climate: never freezes (I am near the gulf) in the winter and stays steamy hot (very humid) from mid June through end of September. Other tips would be helpful, things to watch out for. I am thinking air circulation would be important, and I am planning on building a coupe that would have a lot of venting (roof, walls, floor). Thanks for an y help.

    Claydoctor. [​IMG]
     
  2. pascopol

    pascopol Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 6, 2009
    Tampa Bay
    I used to live in St Petersburg Fl for 15 years, I currently live in New Port Richey 40 miles north. I have now 10 mutt hens, but used to have up to 50 hens of mostly heavy breeds here in NP Richey. Most of my property is shaded by granpa oaks. That's the key.
    You do not need any buildings for chicks here, I use big wire cage with roof, solid back wall and perhaps side wall (wind protection) for night shelter, predator protection (racoons). They do not need any heat or cold shelter in our winters, just shelter from heavy winds, rain and predators.

    As for breeds any breed will do, I would avoid heavy legfethered breeds like Cochins and Brachmas, but I know there are Brahma breeders in Fl so perhaps this is not the issue.

    If you have no trees you have to provide some shading structure constructed the way it will catch any wind breeze, do not attempt to keep them in full sun. St Petersburg is hotter and more humid in summer than Pasco county where I live now.[​IMG]
     
  3. dixiechick

    dixiechick Chillin' With My Peeps

    We have cochin bantams and rosecomb bantam and they do quite well...


    I have some really good Show Quality rosecomb bantam chicks hatching out Friday.. This is what they will look like:

    [​IMG]

    selling them for $5 each
     
    1 person likes this.
  4. Rusty Hills Farm

    Rusty Hills Farm Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 3, 2008
    Up at the barn
    I lived in Florida for 40 years before retiring to Alabama. During all of that time I kept heritage RIRs and they thrived. I too used raised coops that were hardware cloth on 3 sides and the floor but with a solid back wall and a roof with a large overhang. My coops were all under the trees and opened into large runs. I did not let the hens free-range because of predators, raccoons and foxes mostly.

    Good luck with your new project!

    Rusty
     
  5. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

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    Mar 12, 2008
    Loxahatchee, Florida
    [​IMG]
    Welcome to chickeneering in Florida! I'm in western West Palm Beach, with a large flock of many different chicken breeds, and haven't had problems with any of them in our heat. They seem to have enough jungle bird instincts left to know how to stay cool when they need to. They mostly lay around in the shade and don't move much when it's really hot.

    You should build your coop for security as well as airiness. I wouldn't worry about venting the floor, the heat doesn't bother them that much. We do have lots of predators, raccoons & foxes & more, that stay busy year 'round.

    You must also plan for ... hurricanes! Consider what you'll do if/when a hurricane threatens your place, what you'll do with your birds, how you'll secure your coop.
     
  6. Three Cedars Silkies

    Three Cedars Silkies Overrun With Chickens

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    Apr 17, 2008
    Gainesville, Fl.
    Gainesville shouting out here! I agree with Sunny...I would NOT put in a wire floor as it just give predators more area to work with. Our "coops"...we call them pens... are solid back with wire on three side, solid roof. We put plastic on the bottom front during the winter but just pull it off during the warmer weather. The absolute key is SHADE. As long as you put the pens/coops under shade trees they will do fine. I think we turned a fan on ours a couple of times last summer during extremely hot days. We do have a NOT of predators, so the pens need to be VERY predator proof. Racoons are strong and can actually bend wire. We staple it very tightly and then put a board overtop of the wire to secure it further.

    We have HEAVILY feathered bantam cochins as well as a variety of layers. I would highly recommend light brahmas for their beauty, excellent egg laying, great personalities and hardiness. We only have one right now, but I'm going to be on the lookout for another one to add to our flock.
     
  7. Bantamlover23

    Bantamlover23 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 6, 2008
    Chuluota, FL
    I am in Central FL outside of Oviedo. I was wondering does anyone know where I can get Golden laced Bantam cochins, Barred bantam cochins, and Millie Fleur D' Uccles here in florida.
     
  8. Chicken7777

    Chicken7777 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    North Jersey
    [​IMG] I live in East Orlando...right next to chulouta...LOL im very close to you bantamlover23!

    Well i would love to suggest Ameraucanas they are great birds, and lay those beautiful blue eggs [​IMG]

    I have white rocks that look they do very well in the heat as well as the wind....they are great chickens....

    **please do not threadjack with your ordinance agenda. Thanks.**
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 8, 2009
  9. claydoctor

    claydoctor New Egg

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    Jan 7, 2009
    Thanks to all that replied. I am new to using forums and found all the info educational and reassuring that there is probably no such thing as a bad or simple question. I have an area of shade trees and of full sun. the garden takes up the full sun areas now, so the chickens will go in the shade, simple. Also have many possums and raccoons, so thanks for the suggestions for security.

    I do have a question. I am also thinking of starting a bee hive, and that would be located in the shade area as well. Does anyone see a problem with the bees bothering the chickens or vice-versa?

    I have a friend that explained a set up he saw in haiti on a missions trip recently. Wanted to see what anyone thought of this for creating synergy between back yard projects. Their coop run area was on a concrete slab and fenced. The slab was pitched so that when they washed it off, everything went into the fish pond, where they raised fish for food. He said , they said, that this feed the fish. Some of the chicken droppings were added to the garden compost, table scraps and the garden compost was added to their worm farm, the worms were used to feed the fish, and the fish left overs were added to the chicken feed. Being new to this, I wonder what anyone thinks of this, flaws or a great idea?
     
  10. Bantamlover23

    Bantamlover23 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 6, 2008
    Chuluota, FL
    Quote:Acutually I live in Chuluota, but most people do not know where that is. That is so cool that we are so close. [​IMG]
     

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