requirements for 10 chickens??

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by FlaFarm, Aug 21, 2010.

  1. FlaFarm

    FlaFarm New Egg

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    Aug 21, 2010
    Hello,
    I am planning to get 10 (standard breed) chickens in the spring. I really like the idea of a mobile coop (free range, but protected), but I think that a 10-chicken-size-coop would be too heavy for me to move alone. So, I want a run that will allow the birds enough room to roam and get grass without the area going to dirt. Is this even possible? We have a barn that we will be refurbishing on a corner of our property that could easily have a fenced off area to the corners of our property measuring about 60' x 70'. Even with this large an area, will they scratch it into dust? (We are in Florida with sandy soil on a slope and I don't want an erosion problem...)

    What if I divided the area into fourths and rotated them every week or two. Would that keep the area grassy? Or am I just asking for a chicken miracle? Lol

    Thanks
    Michelle
     
  2. SkyWarrior

    SkyWarrior Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 2, 2010
    Wilds of Montana
    [​IMG]

    Hmmm, my best guess is that even that size will get eaten down and scratched with that many chickens. You might want to consider a larger fenced area if you're going to have that many chickens in that area or rotate the chickens in half of the yard. I \\suggest rotating half at a time because a quarter may be too little and they may do too much damage.

    Good luck! [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2010
  3. FlaFarm

    FlaFarm New Egg

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    Aug 21, 2010
    Thanks for the reply and the welcome [​IMG]

    Hmm... I had read somewhere that chickens need 10 sq ft of run space. I had hoped by giving them what amounts to 42 times that I wouldn't have a problem. They must be scratching machines!!

    Perhaps a better solution would be to give them a smaller area (maybe 30 by 60)and plant some fruit trees that don't appreciate the grass competing for fertilizer. Any thoughts? Would they scratch up the roots? Would their droppings be too hot on the trees?

    Thanks for the help!
    Michelle
     
  4. sunflowerenvy

    sunflowerenvy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 4, 2010
    south/west tn
    if you are planing to only have10 that amount that u have more will power than any of us on this forum we end up with 3 times amount.
    in the coop size u need 4 sq ft per bird and alot off ventilation
    1 nest box for 4 birds 12x12 my 14x14
    mayby have extra one in case.

    the coop size 10 sq ft per bird so your pen should 10x 10
    you could make 1 pens that big 40x40 make should you cover the top of it due to hawks, and other pedtors they should not tear up the grass than bady if so the sandy soil wont be bad for them
     
  5. SkyWarrior

    SkyWarrior Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 2, 2010
    Wilds of Montana
    Sunflowerenvy makes a good point. I started with 6 chicks and within a month had nearly 30 birds. [​IMG]

    The problem I see is damage over time, which is why rotation is a good thing. Chicken poo is good for fertilizer, but can be pretty damaging on grass. I think two areas will be sufficient, but she's right about predators too. I have a gazillion predators in my area which is why my guys are in a barn. Chickens need about 4 sq feet per chicken to be happy, but not to keep them from damaging things. I would be more concerned about the ammonia from the droppings damaging the trees than them scratching the small trees up.

    I don't know. I'd try out what you're planning and adjust as required. [​IMG]
     

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