Reconfiguring the coop again

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Spartan22, Apr 22, 2018.

  1. Spartan22

    Spartan22 Crowing

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    It seems like every spring and fall I have new construction/renovation going on with my coop & run to add the newbies. This year it’s not any different since addiction with chicks color and different color eggs became a part of my life. I haven’t even finish the outside of the 2nd coop yet, but the 3-4 wk old chicks are ready to be out of our garage, the rain/snow crazy weather this year push my projects back.

    I have to cull the older 4-5 year olds but it seems like I can’t find the mental courage to do it. Not that am new to culling but makes me very sad and cause me not to eat chicken meat for weeks, though I know it’s for the general health of my layers, and my chickens had never had meds/pesticides or chemicals used on them, so in general better for food-soup, stew consumption.

    I’m just curious what do other do every spring regarding their flock management as a whole (i.e. coop, run, integration, desegregation, maintenance, spring clean up) ?

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  2. SavKel&RynKel

    SavKel&RynKel Free Ranging

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    My Coop
    Nice coop! We're still on our first spring. We've integrated 2 of our 3 "groups" of chickens (some store bought, some incubated) just by separating them with casual introductions from 3-4 weeks, then allowing them to climb in the coop together when they are ready. California weather has made it easy for moving outside (apparently it's supposed to get down to 58 tonight) so I can't say that method works for all.
    As far as maintenance and upgrades go i can't offer any help, though our coop build (which is almost finished) has gone through several renditions from concept to assembly. Its funny to say "i want this" when you draw it, but then you find out your over engineered structural support beam has become the perfect place for perching, changing your coop entrance into a "danger zone"...
     
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  3. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

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    My Coop
    New chicks hatched every spring, have brooder/integration area.
    Cockerels slaughtered between 13-16 weeks.
    Older hens slaughtered nearer fall, after new pullets start to lay, or just before weather turns too cold.
    Coops is crowded in summer, culling(sell/slaughter) gets me down to winter numbers,
    in fall/winter the freezer is crammed.
     
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  4. Spartan22

    Spartan22 Crowing

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    Hey Aart, do you cull the 3rd year or the 4th?
     
  5. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

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    Nov 27, 2012
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    My Coop
    Older hens are about 30 months old when I cull them in the fall.
    In the last couple years I've kept 2 age groups over winter, about 6-7 of each,
    pullets(~6mo) and yearling hens(~18mo).
    I have very limited space and want pullets over winter,
    so have lots of soups and stews over the winter too.
    I'd love to sell them rather than eat them,
    but anyone who knows chickens doesn't want to buy those birds in the fall and feed them all winter before getting eggs the following spring.
    I actually sell a few of the stewing hens.
     
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