What's a good size flock for a backyard?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by willow13, May 8, 2009.

  1. willow13

    willow13 In the Brooder

    May 8, 2009
    I just got 6 rhode island reds, but my dad is wondering if we should get more - while they still have them at the farm store, that is if they're not all on hold. What is a good size flock for a backyard? We've already got horses, cats, and dogs back there. We haven't built the coop yet either, so space isn't a problem yet, but my parents don't want too many chickens either, but enough so they will have a sufficient amount of eggs - we probably consume about 4-6 eggs a day, sometimes more, sometimes less between the 4 of us, not including any baking, etc, and i've read that rhode islands on average produce 5 eggs/week, so that would average out to 30 eggs a week, given that they are all laying consistently. anyone think we should get a couple more or should 6 suffice? my dad was also concerned that it might not be enough if a chick passed for some reason too... or would it be better to wait, and get some later or is it too stressful introducing new chickens to a flock once the pecking order has been established? advice? thanks.
    Last edited: May 8, 2009

  2. Becky_H

    Becky_H Songster

    I'm brand new myself. I went and got a half dozen chickens from TSC, which turned out to be 4 pullets and 2 roos. One of the roos had to be culled, leaving me with the four girls and a family of four. That actuallY COULD have worked, given how rarely we eat eggs, but.

    I got bitten by the bug pretty hard.

    So, middle of next week my mother's day present to myself is going to be another half dozen chickens of assorted varieties from a local BYCer, who is awesome. My suggestion to you would be NOT messing around with hatchery chicks, but reserving 'room' in your flock to get some awesome quality birds from a 'home' breeder, and going from there.
  3. greathorse

    greathorse Songster

    Oct 1, 2008
    Northern Colorado
    Let me see if I have this straight. Your Dad thinks you should have more chicks, is going to build a coop to suit and you are pushing back? WHAT'S WRONG WITH YOU? LOL. Most of us get bitten pretty hard and my guess is pretty soon your dad will be calling time out, no more chickens.. Seriously though if you intend to have a rooster your hens will enjoy life more if there is more like 10-12. With as few as six if you keep the rooster with them full time they can get pretty shaggy looking from all the attention. It is less stressful to introduce all at once, but it is inevitable that new chickens will be introduced to the flock. Lots of folks add a few each year and cull a few each year that way your hens wont all stop laying at the same time. As time goes on you will also begin to discover new breeds and interests. It is best no to think of your first group of chickens as a static event.

    Good luck
    Last edited: May 8, 2009
  4. JennsPeeps

    JennsPeeps Rhymes with 'henn'

    Jun 14, 2008
    South Puget Sound
    I've got a small suburban back yard. 2-3 chickens is ideal, so I've got 10.
    1 person likes this.

  5. Becky_H

    Becky_H Songster

  6. Chickenmaven

    Chickenmaven Songster

    Feb 6, 2009
    We also have a family of four. I used to buy one dozen eggs every two weeks. Now we get over 200 eggs a month! None go to waste (just to waist).
  7. jrleader99

    jrleader99 Songster

    If your dad thinks you should get more -by all means GET MORE!!!! I guess it also depends on the area that has not been laid out for them. Just make sure that your coop and area will be able to handle all of the chicks that you get.

    If you get more eggs than you eat on a daily/weekly basis than you could either sell them or give them away to family/friends/neighbors.

  8. wanda047

    wanda047 Songster

    Mar 26, 2009
    Hardy, Arkansas
    I started with 8 chicks. Went back a week later and bought 8 more. 16 sounded like a good number, except now I've discovered that I have 9 hens and 7 roosters. Few of the roos are going in the freezer in a couple months.

    I couldn't stop with this number... needed variety. Now I have 2 silkies, 5 cochins and 1 mille flleur d'uccle. I also have two incubators full of eggs...(52 chicken/15 turkey) coop #3 was built yesterday [​IMG] Several more to build. I'm having so much fun!! [​IMG]

    for sure get a few more chickens! Don't just feed your family... feed the neighbors, church family, pastor, and friends too! [​IMG]
  9. Becky_H

    Becky_H Songster

    Quote:How many chickens do you have?

  10. karen71

    karen71 Songster

    Apr 27, 2008
    Bear, DE
    More more more more !!!!!!!!! if he lets you get more !!!
    I'll say more one more time [​IMG]

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