Thinking of Getting Started!

LCSlezinger

In the Brooder
10 Years
Mar 8, 2009
15
0
22
Hello All,

I found this website through Mother Earth News magazine. My family and I live in K.C., Missouri. We have a large backyard, although we live in a suburban area. Anyway, we eat a LOT of eggs (about 4 dozen a week) and I was wondering if it might be a good idea to raise our own chickens. For those of you who know what it costs to keep chickens, would it be cheaper than $50 a month to provide for chickens that will be produce 3-4 dozen eggs per week?

We don't currently have any pets. Are chickens loud?
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Will they require me to get up early in the morning?

Thanks in advance for your thoughts and help!!!
 

mjane

In the Brooder
10 Years
Feb 6, 2009
74
1
29
IF you don't get a roo, I don't think hens are loud. Some are when they are having a egg but you get used to it. I think up front you might spend some money such as providing a coop, ect. If you eat 4 dozen eggs a week you probally should get at least 1 dozen chickens. You will spend on feed a 50lb bag should last around 3-4 weeks is 10.00. You don't have to get up early in the morning, most of my hens always layed mid morning to afternoon. I would check in morning and before they bedded themselves. I would get a book such as story's chicken raising. Amazon has it for under 20.oo.
 

Omran

Crowing
Jul 26, 2008
3,074
13
274
Bagdad KY
Quote:
First of all
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seconed I am glad you are on board with us. chicken will not cost that much to feed them eaCH MONTH the most expensive thing is a chicken coop to build, it might run you depending on the size and quality between $100.00 to $2000 it all depends on what you want.
About the noise it also depends on the breed you are getting some breeds are real loud some are very tent.

But you will have a lot of fun.

best of luck and Welcome again.

Omran
 

conroy

Songster
11 Years
Oct 10, 2008
980
53
141
First
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second be very very careful..
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this site and owning chickens is very very addictive... and most on here are enablers ( I am guilty of this)... and I have to tell you it's pretty awesome!! I think you should get chickens.. Look on craiglist maybe you can find a used shed or even a coop for a good price....
 

shortcake1806

Sassy McSassington
12 Years
Sep 11, 2007
1,387
7
171
You're definately in the wrong place if you're expecting any one to talk you out of buying chickens.
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Now if your wanting a nice group of enablers then
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.

Seriously you should be able to care for a dozen hens for less than what you're spending on eggs now. The up front costs are what's really expensive. If you're looking purely at eggs you might want to consider production breeds such as red stars, productions reds, leghorns and black stars. The leghorns have a great feed to egg ratio.
 

LCSlezinger

In the Brooder
10 Years
Mar 8, 2009
15
0
22
Thank you both very much! Will that $10 cost for food, to last 3-4 weeks, be applicable if I want to raise the chickens organically, i.e. without any antibiotics in the feed, etc?

Some other questions I have thought of!

1) How can I find out if they are even allowed in my city? (Kansas City, MO)

2) I am planting a container garden. Will they be any harm to this?

3) Are they safe for my 1 year old son?

4) I also have to make a case for my landlord.
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Will they harm the backyard grass in any way?

5) Can I let them out of the coop each day? I just love the thought of chickens roaming around our yard!
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Thanks everyone!
Catherine
 

cherrychicken

Songster
11 Years
Jul 7, 2008
769
0
139
Santa Fe, New Mexico
Welcome!
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I think that you would thoroughly enjoy chickens.
Well, since the average price of grocery store eggs here is about $2.50, and there are an average of 4 weeks per month, 4x 2.50=10. 10x 4(The number of eggs cartons a week)=$40. You spend about $40 a month on eggs, I would guess. Here, an average bag of regular chicken scratch costs about $20. For us, (we have 6 year-olds) it lasts almost a month. Other than that, there aren't really alot of monthly costs. So the $20-$40( That you will no longer be spending), =$-20 a month. So it will be less than $50 a month. You will be earning money!
However, for the first while, you will have some extra costs. You will need: The chicks (about $3 a chick here), The coop (prices will range alot due to if you buy one pre-made or make your own), A waterer (about $10 for a one-gallon one.), A feeder (about $30 for a large self-feeder) and maybe some straw for insulation (about $6 per bale). Total, for the first month, you will be spending about 10+30+6+20= 66$ ,not including the chicks and the coop. I would say that the first month is definitely the most expensive. Also, be sure to ask the people at the store for chick grower (special chick food) the first few months.
Chickens can be loud, but usually only when they are laying eggs. Roosters can be very loud, but in a pleasant way. In my opinion.,. The chickens will not require you to getup early. You may want to get up early if you lock your chickens in the coop at night. But, if your like me, you can leave them unlocked, in the coop, but they will still be protected by the chicken yard.

Hope I was helpful,
-jenny
 

LCSlezinger

In the Brooder
10 Years
Mar 8, 2009
15
0
22
Thanks a lot! Yeah, we currently pay $3.50 a dozen for fresh organic eggs from a local family farm. It sounds like it would be significantly cheaper over the long run to have our own!

I think I had visions of being woken at 5 a.m. to loud chickens
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which I obviously don't want! We get up around 7:30, so hopefully that would be early enough.

Thanks again everyone! This is so helpful.
 

conroy

Songster
11 Years
Oct 10, 2008
980
53
141
Our roosters crow right outside our bedroom window.. I sleep though it. LOL
 

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