I am trying to make my plans for the spring garden season. I have 16 birds (15 chickens and 1 Muscovy). Last year I was successful in raising a large garden while freeranging most of the time. I think I let my plants get some size to them before turning out the birds, but can't remember specifically. Any suggestions based on actual experience with a large vegetable garden (1/4 acre or more)? My thinking is to stop freeranging for a couple weeks after I plant my corn, fearing they will pull up the plants when they first sprout. Seems like last year I was fine after they got some size to them (2-3 weeks). This will also give me time to put out fire ant bait around the yard without concerns about them picking up too much of it. I know a couple good rains and the bait will be gone. They didn't mess with my tomatoes except when they the fruit was red and had a lot of bugs on it (even then they weren't doing much harm). My red potatoes were never bothered, and since I plant them deep I am not too concerned about them being scratched up. I grew a lot of good squash and they never pecked them either. I have some blackberry vines getting old enough to start making this year. Do chickens like berries? Will I have to fence them off?