Reasons To Get Chickens?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Mudstar4ever, Jun 8, 2011.

  1. Mudstar4ever

    Mudstar4ever Out Of The Brooder

    Jun 5, 2011
    (We've had some bad luck with our two clutches of chickens from predators, so my family has stopped getting them. But too years have passed from their unfortunate deaths and my parents said that if I could create a Powerpoint slideshow that shows them that we can keep chickens 100%, or as close to, safe then we can give it another shot. This is my last chance, so I'm going to need good information on chickens! We're starting from scratch, so consider me a new chicken owner! I will quote some of you guys in the presentation, by the way. We live in Nevada County, California, so it is heavily wooded and ranges in varieties of predators! Thanks! ~Muddeh)

    So the start of my slideshow is: The Pros and Cons of having chickens. Yes, there can be some cons. I have to make it realistic. So what are some good and bad reasons to owning chickens?
  2. jeancordelia

    jeancordelia Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 1, 2010
    I have watched these posts for quite a while. I live in the Arizona desert. We have lots of predators. People here, and some do have chickens, build a place to equal fort knox. It has to have a wire bottom. not chicken wire but heavier. Very small holes. even chicken wire muct be offset so the holes are smaller. the 1/2 inch wire mesh is good. Or it could be solid. I have one that is concrete, one that is an old wood that is pretty deteriorated. And one is just dirt. On the outside you must put either old tin or wire or maybe even railroad ties down so that it can't be dug into. That means flat on the outside for at least a foot or maybe even two. Predators don't know how to dig and go in for very far. It should be tight between the sides and the bottom.
    Then you must put something heavier than chicken wire for your sides. Here they use very heavy chain link that is mine weight. Quite a bit heavier than 9 gauge. They use pipe and chain link for the sides and the gate. Also sometimes railroad ties for the posts. They bury the chain link down at least a foot. If there is wire for the top it should be heavy also. Also they must have shade and a place that is dry. So some of the roof must be solid and waterproof. We don't get snow or real cold but when it rains it can rain hard. It must be ventilated here so they don't get too hot. Most of it needs to be open, not solid.

    We can't let them range. so you must have enough room in the house. I have approximately 10 X 10 and maybe five or six chickens tops in each. I do have a 12X36 slab with a tin shed that is 10X10 inside that. Outer fence, slab fenced, inside the shed. Three lines of defense. I do yet need to put the wire over the top of the run so the hawks and owls don't get them.

    Remember your predator. Everything from bears, hawks, owls, bobcats, skunks, racoons, to snakes. Small holes, you don't want to find a rattlesnake in your nest box or coiled around your waterer. So over your heavy fencing you must put small preferably 1/2 inch wire. It must go all the way up, they climb.

    I once visited a ranch and they had chickens, chain link
    My mother had 1/2 inch wire all the way up, no holes up high either. That coop was inside a chain link fence.

    This is a bit random but I tried to include it all, remember the shed must be shaded. too hot if it sits in the sun. If it does use shade cloth.

    Hope this helps, you can build it safe.
  3. cluckiemama

    cluckiemama Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 19, 2010
    PROS- easy to maintain (I just let them out in the am and close the door at night. They put themselves to bed!)
    - not noisy
    - eggs (goes without saying)
    - hours of entertainment watching them bop around the yard
    - less waste - they eat much of our leftover food scraps

    CONS - the yard has yucky chicken poop everywhere
    - the smell - I have 8 six week olds in the guest room. I know it will be better when I can get them outside
    - having to find someone to watch them when we go on vacation

    To us, the pros way outweigh the cons. My husband was really against the idea and it took a long time for me and my eight year old son to convince him. And now, my husband LOVES the girls! He constantly comments on how glad he is that we have them. Plus, the neighbors go crazy for the eggs!

    Good luck!
  4. CaroleW

    CaroleW Out Of The Brooder

    May 13, 2011
    I would say in the PRO column you can count it as an educational project.

    In the month that I've had my 7 pullets I've also started a mealworm farm, I've been studying chicken health/nutrition/biology/disease issues, weed identification (to know if it is poisonous or ok to feed them), study their behavior, and that I must quarantine flocks from each other and slowly integrate the flocks.

    Another PRO...they keep me from watching mindless entertainment, they are better than TV!
  5. Backyard Farm

    Backyard Farm Certified Personal Chicken Attendant

    Apr 1, 2009
    Idea for decreasing predators - the bottom 30" of my pen is metal roofing sheets. Also. old chain link fence laid around the outside stops digging of various animals. Metal roofing and 1/2" wire (which is above metal roofing panels) secured by screws not nails as these are MUCH harder for an animal to pull out.

    Pro - teaching children and grandchildren about caring for something that is dependent on them for care. Teaching them to be gentle with a critter that they are more powerful than... important lessons for children.
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2011
  6. Life is Good!

    Life is Good! Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 14, 2011
    suburbia Chicagoland
    Easy to care for

    If sick, (can be) expensive and time consuming

    Much reading/research/conclusions to determine appropriate type for environment and cost
    Biology (chicken's!), botany (plants that are safe or not), construction skills (gotta build ft. knox!), mathematic deductive reasoning skills (how many chickens fit into space available?), small business management (overhead costs vs. profit - if selling eggs)

    If you're a student, do you have time to devote to a project of this caliber? Do you know the hours spent reading, researching, building, ALL BEFORE getting said chicks?

    Finding local-ish source for chicks, feed, medications, bedding, and all those wierd sorts of things you'd never think of having to ask for (like d.e.).

    Falling in love with an expensive breed - just don't! Chickens are chickens - fall in love with an affordable kind!

    Coop and Run
    Practical, real world experience of building something tangible with YOUR hands. ALL homeowners at some point have had to do simple repairs...knowing how to wield a hammer properly (or name that tool) gives you a huge leg up on life.

    Dealing with hardware cloth, zip-ties, heavy materials - know your limitations and when you need a second pair of hands to complete the work.

    That's what I can think of for now. Good luck on your powerpoint! Check the 'coop and run' section of the forum for building ideas and tips.

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