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What should I add to my small flock?

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by mylovelyladies, May 3, 2008.

  1. mylovelyladies

    mylovelyladies Out Of The Brooder

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    May 1, 2008
    On this past Wednesday our first hens arrived. We have a Barred Rock, Columbian Rock, RIR and white Silkie. I'd like to add a couple more and I'd like to do it ASAP before the flock is really established. There is a poultry auction this weekend but I'm having a hard time deciding what I should try to get.

    My original intention has been to only get one of every kind/colour for the variety and because our numbers are so limited (we're in town). There are just so many beautiful and interesting chickens! A week ago I would've said that I'd like to add a buff or blue bantam Cochin. Now I'm starting to wonder if I should get another Silkie or even two. I feel like maybe she's lonely and she sleeps on the floor so some company might be nice. But I don't feel good about having duplicates [​IMG]

    I'm also really taken by silver laced Wyandottes so I've considered that. I would probably prefer a standard one though. Dh isn't a huge fan of the bantams because of the small eggs. I'd like at least one more though because my kids like the smaller chickens.

    What do you think? Any suggestions? Keep in mind that I'm in town, we have cold winters, I have small kids, our coop is 4x3 with an attached 4x10 run and they will free range as often as possible.
     
  2. thechickenchick

    thechickenchick Born city, Living country

    Mar 8, 2008
    Eaton, Colorado
    I guess if it were me I would try to get your silkie a buddy! You could get another color. I have 1 blue and 1 white. I have 18 standards. 1 mystery bantam breed![​IMG] I hear ya about the small eggs, my hubby said the same thing! Good luck on whatever you decide! Let us know what you bring home![​IMG]
     
  3. mylovelyladies

    mylovelyladies Out Of The Brooder

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    May 1, 2008
    Well, my dad just called and a friend of his has a black bantam Cochin that is just as quiet and docile as can be that he was getting ready to sell. Dad mentioned that I was looking for one so he's going to give her to me [​IMG]

    Now I really want a friend for my Silkie too.....I feel bad for her sleeping all alone on the floor at night [​IMG]
     
  4. Southerngirl

    Southerngirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 25, 2008
    Central Arkansas
    Any of the Cochin breeds are sweet and docile; did I mention beautiful ? They look like they are wearing little pantaloons in the yard and they make excellent mothers. The Light Brahmas are also tame and gentle especially around kids for both breeds.
     
  5. redhead83402

    redhead83402 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 9, 2008
    Idaho
    can I just add my 2c? We have about 10 different kinds of chicken, and I have to say, my favorite are the cochin & the buff brahma. They have the sweetest personalities ~ also, we do so love our 2 araucana's, one is a splash, the other a "skunky mutt", and they are also so very sweet. Plus, they will lay such pretty eggs, I guarantee you will be pleased with an araucana.
    {:>)=
    ~Red
     
  6. Davaroo

    Davaroo Poultry Crank

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    Feb 4, 2007
    Leesville, SC
    On this past Wednesday our first hens arrived. We have a Barred Rock, Columbian Rock, RIR and white Silkie. I'd like to add a couple more and I'd like to do it ASAP before the flock is really established.
    What do you think? Any suggestions? Keep in mind that I'm in town, we have cold winters, I have small kids, our coop is 4x3 with an attached 4x10 run and they will free range as often as possible.

    SO, as I read through this thread, I see a Cochin has been added to the original 4, and you are interested in shopping for more. Is that correct?
    You have a 12 sq ft coop and roaming outside the 40 sq ft enclosure is an option, as I make it, but only in the near yard.

    Those who know me will see this coming, and shore up the bulwarks in advance. So, preparations made, here it comes:

    I'll be the one wet blanket in all this and say you have enough. These are your first chickens - let that sink in for awhile, before you add more.

    I wont get into the usual space allowance issue here, since most people know the drill on that. Suffice it to say that with the original four, you were pushing it. With the addition of the Cochin, you've exceeded it. For ANY chickens in confinement, waste management is the overiding issue. 70% of what a chicken eats goes out the back - and they eat a lot. Especially the large ones.
    That marginal coop and pen will fill up fast with toxic waste, with only your quintet in residence. The Five Rules for Chickens never fails.

    Also, chickens have some bad habits we dont talk about much in our rush to "love" them. In addition to pooping all over anything and everything, they will tear up some landscape. Before long their enclosure will be barren, mark my words, and they wont stop there.
    Flower beds, gardens, prized shrubs and most any piece of lawn is fair game to them.

    As if these weren't enough, city living with chickens is replete with its own set of challenges. Everything from wayward dogs to rotten kids, from nosy neighbors to overzealous animal control officers can enter into the picture. I know; I've done it for years. Soon enough, our stressed economic atmosphere will shift in favor of the city flock - but we arent there yet. Be warned.

    You wont listen (no one ever does) and I will surely be run up the flag pole by the "yard aquarium" crowd for saying this, but I'll risk it:

    Dont get any more until you get to know the ones you have.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2008
  7. Chirpy

    Chirpy Balderdash

    May 24, 2007
    Colorado
    I totally second what elderoo has said. You really are already over your 'space' allotment. [​IMG]

    I say that with a smile because I know how easy it is to get addicted and want MORE!! I also know that there can be exceptions to the space issues: for example is they are free ranging all day every day and only inside at night and you never have inclement weather where they would have to be locked up for more than a night, etc.

    However, after having done this for only a year... I am a huge advocate of having less chickens in more space. Don't push it, it's just not worth the potential problems of hen pecking, etc.

    Enjoy who you have for now.
     

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