Starting Out, Any Advice?

melodyrg

Songster
8 Years
Oct 31, 2012
67
4
101
Hi everyone! I'm really interested in raising chickens for my FFA SAE project. I plan on building my own coop and run and keep 4-6 hens and selling the eggs to family and friends. I basically just need advice! Also, I really want to keep a flock of mixed breeds that all produce eggs well. So please help me out with this project I basically need to know, 1. How many chickens do you recommend I keep? 2. What breeds mix well together and produce eggs well? And feel free to throw out any knowledge I may, and most likely am lacking about raising chickens, thanks everyone!

Edit: Also, I'm looking into buying chicks from Meyers hatchery. Should I get my chicks vaccinated for Marek's disease?
 
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liz9910

Crowing
Apr 8, 2012
12,404
598
396
Northern California
welcome-byc.gif
from California! For coops you can go here: https://www.backyardchickens.com/f/9/coop-run-design-construction-maintenance and for advise about what breeds to get go here: https://www.backyardchickens.com/f/14/breeds-genetics-showing but feel free to ask questions and we will try to help or point you in the right direction! Good luck.
 

redsoxs

Crowing
8 Years
Jul 17, 2011
25,643
2,088
463
North Central Kansas
Greetings from Kansas, melodyrg, and
welcome-byc.gif
! Great to have you here! I think it's cool you are using chickens for your project - I think you will find it very rewarding. I am all in favor of a mixed flock - I really like the variety. I agree with others about going to the Learning Center. I wish you the best!
 

rikithemonk

Songster
7 Years
Apr 19, 2012
279
25
101
Mont Dora Florida
It depends on where you live. If you live in Florida, you cant sell eggs to anyone. I advise you to look over your local laws before you begin planning your chicken set up.

I know some of you are getting ready to say BS, you can too sell eggs. Here is the law. (in general terms because its been over a year since I researched it.) Florida law says that to sell eggs, you have to meet certain sanitary requirements. You have to have a dedicated out building with a commercial style kitchen on your property, but it must be a separate building. It must have a stainless steel sink, the kind found in commercial kitchens. Certain kind of flooring, certain kind of walls. The building must contain a water heater capable of reaching some high temperature. Etc, Etc, Etc, Etc. The list goes on and on.

And yes, that's required even for some guy selling two dozen eggs a month to his neighbor. Oh, I forgot, You also have to be inspected regularly and must post the inspection report on the wall in a certain way.

I really wanted to sell eggs as a very small business, but I cant afford to set up what amounts to a commercial restaurant in my back yard. If I could, i would just open a little diner.


Riki
 
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TheChickenKid

Hatching
7 Years
Oct 28, 2012
1
0
6
I'm glad you are getting started with chickens! :D First, if you are getting baby chicks, just make sure you have a brooder (witch can be anything from a big cardboard box, to a wooden floored cage, or anything that will keep the chicks warm and safe.) you will need feeders and waterers (witch you can pick up at a local Tractor Supply CO or some place like that. You will need chick starter feed, and a heat lamp THAT IS NOT COATED WITH ANYTHING EXPESIALLY TEFLON that stuff will kill all birds with in a few miniutes you would want a red heat lamp bulb (the temperature should stay about 90-95 degrees for the first week lower the tempurature by 5 degrees each week until you get to 80 degrees) the bulb should look be clear not plastic looking. You can go to a local hatchery or you can mail order chicks from www.mcmurrayhatchery.com. prior to hatching chicks absorve yolk with has everything they need so they won't have to eat or drink for a few days, perfect for long shipping! :D when the chicks get about a few months older you should put them in the coop.

Any questions or comments? Just email me at [email protected]!

Thanks!
 

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