some questions about managing my flock (am I doing this all right??)


7 Years
Oct 28, 2012
Chico (Northern California)
we have 6 chicks, about 2 to 2 1/2 months old, they all came from the same farm. We have had them about 3 weeks. They have a coop that we built, with a lower platform, 2 nesting boxes above and a perch even higher than that. there is a door and a window. (is this big enough) under the coop we keep their food and water. at night we have been closing the door and opening it in the morning. they spend all day outside in a fenced area (but low fence, we're finding that they have been flying over the fence, perhaps on accident because they seem to want to get back inside with the rest of their flock. we will wait until they are bigger to see if they can still do this once they are heavier, and if they can we will trim their wings). their grazing area includes our summer garden which we are not using now, and has some low trees and bushes that offer cover, plus their coop door stays open so they sometimes go inside there to nap. they have found a few places they like to take dirt baths too. we plan on rotating their grazing area according to our garden needs. we're giving them our kitchen scraps (veggies, fruit, egg shells, grains). we live in a neighborhood where there aren't many preditors (except cats right now but I am assuming once the chicks are larger the cats will stay away, and after some shots of the hose the cats keep their distance). One question is once they are bigger, do we still need to close their door at night? Our winter temperatures do not get very cold, but if it is going to get down to freezing we could close the door and maybe cover the coop with a tarp or something?

any thoughts? suggestions?

Thank you! we're very much enjoying them and it seems they are very happy as well.


In the Brooder
8 Years
Jan 18, 2012
Gold Country California
I used to live in Chico!

Yes, you will still need to close them in the coop at night, but not because of the cold. Even where you live, you have predators other than cats. You will have opossums, skunks, and raccoons that come out at night. I remember my dog getting sprayed by a skunk in our own backyard near Hooker Oak park.

The other predators you need to be concerned about are hawks and owls. Even if the chicken is too big to be carried off, the raptor will kill them and eat them on the ground.

I live in the Nevada City area now and my flock has a large completely enclosed run so I don't have to worry about predators. You may want to construct a run for your chickens for when you aren't around to watch them.

You don't need to worry about the winter weatherfor them in Chico though. We had a little snow today and my chickens were just fine. They would love to live in Chico in the winter though. My pullets and cockeral, in particular, have no idea what that cold stuff falling from the sky could be.

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