Starting from Scratch

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by Legalchicken, May 10, 2016.

  1. Legalchicken

    Legalchicken New Egg

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    May 9, 2016
    Hello, I am very new to all of this and I would be grateful if someone could help me get my feet dry. I live just outside New York City and I purchased a coop where I plan to raise 8 chickens at first. I purchased a coop and run that stands 5' in height by 3' wide and 8' long. The coop and run sit on a concrete slab. When I say new I mean I am very new. I've been trying to read and watch vids for weeks but I still don't know what to out on top of the concrete floor for the chickens to roam on when in the run. I think I have the feeder and water figured out, although I don't know how much to feed the chickens or even know which chickens are best for the northeast. When I say new I mean really new. I look forward to hearing from everyone and to the extent I can provide some basic legal advice in exchange I am happy to do so. Thanks!

    Len
     
  2. Chicken Girl1

    Chicken Girl1 Stuck back in the 40s Premium Member

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  3. LABowles

    LABowles New Egg

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    May 7, 2016
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    I don't have a lot of advice on what to lay on the cement, but if there is a way for you to extend your coop too include a "dust bathing" area for you chickens then I would. They love it and it's healthy for them.
     
  4. Legalchicken

    Legalchicken New Egg

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    May 9, 2016
    Thank you for the reply. I was reading a few articles in the learning center. They were very helpful. It seems there are many ways to do this. I was hoping to find a "Raising Chickens 101" source that would essentially help me start from step 1, such as lay bedding, what is a dust bath, how to prepare the shelter, and then start with food basics, water basics, how much is enough, etc. Then move on to other things such as cleaning and maintenance. If you know of such a source for the very basics, I would be grateful! Thanks again.

    Len
     
  5. Legalchicken

    Legalchicken New Egg

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    May 9, 2016
    I have heard about "dust bathing" but to be honest i dont know how to prepare such an area. My run is 9' long by 3' wide. Any advice would be much appreciated.

    Len
     
  6. BantamFan4Life

    BantamFan4Life LOOK WHAT YOU MADE ME DO. Premium Member

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    Welcome to BYC! I'm glad you joined us! :)
     
  7. Legalchicken

    Legalchicken New Egg

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    May 9, 2016
    Thanks and glad to be here! Great site and I am learning quite a bit and having fun so far! An education for sure!
     
  8. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

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    Nice to meet you Len. First you could benefit by joining your state thread (put name in search box and it will pop up." You may even find other bycers living in your area who are very likely to mentor you. Second I would recommend the "Raising Backyard chickens," forum - menu opens to the right so you can check out "raising backyard CHICKS."

    Rule of thumb is 4-5 sq. feet per bird in the coop - excluding roosts and nesting boxes) and 10 sq.feet per bird in the outdoor run. Some folks just use an old sandbox for the chickens and fill with peat moss, wood ash, sand etc. Chickens love to dust bathe - as do wild birds, it helps repel lice and mites. They love it so much sometimes people think they are throwing a fit or passed out. That's chicken nirvana.

    The coops section offers many designs, sizes, types - for instance some folks with just a few birds like to use what is called a "chicken tractor," that can be moved every couple of days, so the chickens don't destroy the lawn. The predator threads can provide advice on keeping the bad guys away.
     
  9. Legalchicken

    Legalchicken New Egg

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    May 9, 2016
    Thanks for the guidance. I appreciate it. I've been through quite a few threads, but i prefer the one on one. It really means a lot to me, and what you've taught me in 4 minutes I've searched for hours and couldnt find. I purchased a prebuilt run and put it together. It says capacity for 15 chickens and has 6 nesting boxes ... 3 on each side.... the run however isnt that long.. only 3' wide by 9' long. I will follow your advice about the dust bath. I think i can handle that... is 2' x 2' sufficient filled with the materials you mentioned? Also, I dont know which feeder and water dispenser is best. I was thinking of starting with 8 egg layers and might have an area to free roam. Also, how do I know how much food to give them? Do the auto dispensers work well? Other pets will eat until they pass out, and Im not sure how much is enough or how to distribute to the chickens. Your help is much appreciated. Thanks again!

    Len
     

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