Ready to start my flock..Advice?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by emmaie892000, Aug 22, 2013.

  1. Sebrights

    1 vote(s)
    25.0%
  2. Wyandottes

    3 vote(s)
    75.0%
  3. Araucana

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  4. Easter Eggers

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  5. Belgian de Uccle

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  6. Andalusian

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. emmaie892000

    emmaie892000 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hi! I just found a great deal on prebuilt BIG chicken coops, so my plan is in action! I'm allowed to get five chickens at first, and the coop is big enough for 15! I already have two, one is a Dominique pullet, and the other I'm not sure, both are at a neighbor's house right now. Me and my brother want each chicken to be a different breed, and we want pretty chickens. The breeds on our want list are; Easter Eggers, Belgian de Uccles, a Silver Laced Bantam Wyandotte, Araucana, Andalusian Grey or blue, and Sebrights...We know we probably can't afford to be picky, but they're just so pretty! So I guess what I need is advice on where to find these breeds, or other breeds that would work for us. Like I said, first time flock owner here, I need any advice I can get![​IMG]
     
  2. Wyandottes7

    Wyandottes7 Overrun With Chickens

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    Well, I'd personally suggest you get a Columbian Wyandotte. They are very pretty, hardy, tame, sweet, inquisitive, and are great layers (six eggs a week in the summer). I have one, and she is my favorite chicken. Overall, Wyandottes are great birds. They are usually easy to find at hatcheries. I got mine at Murray McMurray Hatchery (http://www.mcmurrayhatchery.com/index.html), but other hatcheries sell them.

    The bird in my profile picture is a Columbian Wyandotte pullet. Here are some more photos:

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    As you can see, they are very beautiful birds! I love my Columbian Wyandotte.

    Easter Eggers are nice birds too. I have one, and she is docile and lays green eggs. She is a little skittish though, and gets picked on by the other chickens.
     
  3. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Chicken Obsessed

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    I would suggest you make sure you have plenty of room for your chickens. I personally don't go by the "square foot per chicken" rules. I watch my flock. If they seem happy and healthy, I know they have enough space. I also free range. The only time they are locked in their coop with attached run is when we're gone and my mom is chicken-sitting. Which leads to another thing. Make sure you have someone to take care of your birds if you should happen to leave for a few days or so. Make sure you have a plan if one of your chickens should become seriously injured or ill. Or if you end up with unwanted roosters somehow. Most importantly, keep it simple and enjoy your birds!
     
  4. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    How big is your coop? Actual feet, not just "big".
     
  5. emmaie892000

    emmaie892000 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Its a triangular prism with maybe one third of it being the coop..the rest is a run. Its 6 feet wide at the base of the triangle and 10 feet long.
     
  6. chicken pickin

    chicken pickin Overrun With Chickens

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    That size coop doesn't sound big enough for 15 chickens. If only 1/3 of that is coop then that would mean the coop section is roughly 6ftx3ft ish. That would be big enough to house 4-5 chickens max. Unless I am mis understanding your set up. Maybe a pic would help.

    As for the breeds you have selected are they all bantams versions? They are all great choices and all so very pretty. You can find these at hatcheries that will ship the chicks to you. www.mypetchicken.com www.meyerhatchery.com www.mcmurrayhatchery.com www.idealpoultry.com there are more I just cant think of them

    If ordering from a hatchery doesn't work for you check on craigslist in the farm and garden section, or you can look for you state thread here on backyardchickens and post there with what you are looking for someone may be able to help you find something that suits your needs locally to you. Also some feed stores still carry chicks this time of year, you could call your local feed stores and ask.
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2013
  7. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    That's what I was thinking. The folks who sell the pre-made coops usually count about 2 feet per bird, and at those numbers you're going to have pecking if you're lucky, cannibalism if you're not.
    That coop is WAY too small for 15 birds, even bantams. The five you're talking about being allowed to get will be about the max for this coop, don't plan on getting more later. I just hate to see folks get more birds than they have space for, then they're posting about behavior problems and they're already attached to all the birds and don't want to get rid of them.......it's better to just not get that many in the first place.
     
  8. Wyandottes7

    Wyandottes7 Overrun With Chickens

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    I agree with the above two posters. If only about 20 square feet of it is the actual coop, you can't keep more than ten chickens (when using the 2 ft per bird rule), and I'd say that you couldn't comfortabley keep any more than four or five. If you have too little room, your birds will peck each other and fight, or even become cannibals. And, the remaining 40 square feet of run would only really be enough for four birds. In general, you want to give each chicken ten square feet of outside space at least if they are going to not be allowed to free range.

    A picture would help us understand you set up more, but I really think you'd be better off sticking with five chickens.
     
  9. emmaie892000

    emmaie892000 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I personally like my chickens to have lots of room..the guy selling said fifteen I won't keep any more than six even freeranging and thanks for the hatcheries!
     
  10. XtremeRooster

    XtremeRooster Chillin' With My Peeps

    I have a beautiful Welsumer rooster I was just given. I have to agree on that coop / run size I would not put more than 8 in there and that is kind of pushing the limit, you'll probably be better off with 6 birds. Just wait until you see how much poop 6 birds will make before you add anymore! Don't make the same mistake I did FINISH the coop and run before you get the birds!
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2013

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