What kind of a person gives you chickens as a gift?

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by ibtater, Sep 6, 2014.

  1. ibtater

    ibtater Hatching

    Sep 5, 2014
    I received 4 chicks and a large used cage as a birthday present from my son on July 25th. At first I thought this was an odd gift as I have never expressed much interest in chickens, however I set about the task of integrating them into my life.The cage is on legs and has a wire bottom it has a ramp style door and a hinged roof. I think it will do temporarily.
    I lost a chick to a predator the first night, Something got a hold of a chicks leg through the wire bottom, I saw that the used cage had once had a tray to clean up droppings that was missing if it had been in place I wouldn't have lost that chick. I cut a piece of plywood to replace the tray and I put cardboard on the bottom until I can implement a more permanent solution I think this will be better for their feet too. I put a two foot tall fence around the cage to give them a "run". My little dog Toto (who is a cairn terrier just like the dog on the wizard of Oz) promptly showed me that the fence wasn't tall enough so I made it four feet tall, With that done I went to the feed store to replace the chick and came home with two chicks since it was the last chance to get chicks from that hatching bringing the size of my flock up to five. A week or so later two more chicks disappeared but I had left the door to the cage open and there no sign of what had happened. A few days later I was awakened at four am by Toto barking incessantly near the chicks it wasn't her normal bark and I got up to see what was going on when I got outside Toto was at the pen barking as soon as she saw me she bolted through the fence and chased a possum under the cage I moved the cage just a bit and Toto charged under grabbing the possum by the neck and shaking it violently she snapped it's neck expertly as if this was something she does routinely I took the Possum from her and disposed of it. I gave Toto a treat and went back to bed. Since then I have bought four more chicks from a later hatching and have lost 4 chicks that have disappeared without a trace. I'm not sure if it is a predator or if they are getting out somehow. I haven't found any evidence of a predator but I have discovered and repaired faults in my fence job. I am now considering building a "tractor"' with a loft and proper nest boxes,
    That brings us up to last week in my chicken saga. Last Tuesday when I got home from work ( I am working as a cook at at popular local restaurant) I checked Craigslist/free ads as is my habit and saw that someone was giving away four Rhode Island Red chickens and the ad had only been posted for twenty minutes. I thought this would be a great way to accelerate my chicken hobby to a point where I can collect some eggs so I immediately called the person and told them I was on the way to get them When I got there thirty minutes later the man told me he had already received at least ten calls or e-mails from people that wanted them, but I was first in line. How lucky is that?
    I brought the reds home in shipping container the man also gave me some feed,shell, a water holder and a home made feeder. My friend Chelsie helped me remove a large aviary cage from my pigeon loft (14 white rock doves for wedding releases) and we took it to my "chicken area" we put it on its side to have more floor space it is about 10 ft wide X 20 ft long X 4 ft tall. I shoveled in dirt from my worm pit where I compost leaves this will keep them off the wire bottom and provide a worm filled scratch for them I attached the feeder in a corner so it wont get knocked over and put in the water holder in and left the shipping container in because they seem to like sitting on it. I also put a tarp covering about half of the cage so they have some shelter.
    This morning one of the reds left me an egg and I ate what was likely the freshest egg I have ever had. it was great. I guess I'd have to say this hobby is one of the best presents iv'e ever gotten. My son is a pretty great guy.
    [​IMG] [​IMG]
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2014

  2. LIChickens

    LIChickens Chirping

    Jun 8, 2014
    Long Island, NY
    Welcome to BYC!

    You will find a lot of good information here. Keep on asking questions and you will get many good answers.

    You may also want to read the FAQ below.

    Glad to hear your sorrows and joys of chicken ownership.
  3. Mountain Peeps

    Mountain Peeps Change is inevitable, like the seasons Premium Member

    Apr 23, 2014
    My Coop
    Welcome to BYC! Please make yourself at home and we are here to help.

    Sorry about your loss![​IMG] But I'm glad all has worked out![​IMG]
  4. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
    I hope the Craig's list birds don't turn out to be all roosters. That's usually the 'catch,' when people give chickens away. Sounds like you are a fast learner. It may have been a raccoon or rat that pulled the chick out - that is their usual M.O. The best thing you can do to help safeguard them is to use 1/2" (1/4" is even better) hardware cloth instead of chicken wire or any wire with larger openings. Chicken wire keeps chickens in but, doesn't keep predators out.

    Considering some gift's I've gotten -chickens would have been the best. I'm sure there is more to tell of your chicken saga, and I really wish you would continue with it. Glad you joined the flock [​IMG]
  5. Kelsie2290

    Kelsie2290 Free Ranging Premium Member

    Feb 18, 2011
  6. BantamLover21

    BantamLover21 Crowing

    Jul 24, 2013
    [​IMG] Glad you joined us!
  7. Wyandottes7

    Wyandottes7 Crowing

    Jul 24, 2013
    Welcome to BYC![​IMG] We're glad to have you.

    Good luck with your birds!

  8. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend Staff Member

    Mar 21, 2011
    New Mexico, USA
    My Coop
    Hello there and welcome to BYC! [​IMG]

    Sorry for your losses. [​IMG] But congrats on that first egg! Nothing better than home grown eggs. The store bought eggs pale in comparison to the real thing.

    Great to have you aboard and welcome to our flock!
  9. Alright [​IMG]

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