My first chickens

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Tilly
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My first chickens

Post by Tilly »

Hi Guys, i just found you after looking for info on keeping ex-battery chickens. I want to rescue a couple and keep them in my garden. I have 6ft panal fencing all the way round and a normal garden shed. How could i convert the shed to give them things to perch on etc. Do they bed on straw? Do they need boxes (like old mushroom boxes) to nest in? How messy are they? I have a conventional square of lawn with gravel at the back, but the grass is long as the garden doesn't get used (hence i want to make use of it with chickens). Thanks for any tips, Tilly x

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wendy
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Post by wendy »

Hi Tilly,
Welcome to the forum.
A lot of chicken keepers convert old sheds. Yes they lay on straw [in the battery it was just wire] not hay as it is too dusty. I did have a nest box. But they decided they would rather lay on the floor, so I took the box away and just make a big nest on the floor and they love it.
How messy do you call messy. I don't find them too bad. But I have to say if your lawn is small, you may not have it for long. After two summers I had no lawn whatsoever and have had to re turf. The chickens now have a 40ft x 5ft run and come out into a pen on the grass, as I quite like some green around LOL
Wendy
http://www.busheyk9.co.uk

If you can't be a good example........
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Tilly
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Post by Tilly »

Thank you Wendy, i guess with just 2 it wont be as bad. I don't use the garden anyhow and at least i wont worry about mowing the lawn! Do they actually eat grass too or just peck around?
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Willow
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Post by Willow »

Hi Tilly.. Mine spend a lot of time picking the tips off shoots of grass... they love digging around in the grass looking for bugs... :mrgreen:
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wendy
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Post by wendy »

Hi Tilly,
They do eventually eat the grass down to the root, come winter when it isn't growing.
I would suggest you think of getting 3 rather than 2. As they are flock animals. If heaven forbid something happens to one you then would have an only chicken. If you are getting them from Battery Hen Welfare Trust they won't let you have less than three.
They can dig lunar landscapes if given the time.
Wendy
http://www.busheyk9.co.uk

If you can't be a good example........
you will just have to be a horrible warning
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Mo
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Post by Mo »

It doesn't take much time either. They like digging a dust bath then sun bathing in it. I moved mine out of the orchard onto the lawn a month ago. There is still some grass, but lots of holes too.
If the grass is very long I don't know if there is a danger they'll get crop bound, what do others think ?
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wendy
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Post by wendy »

Worth a thought Mo. I wouldn't know my grass isn't long.
Wendy
http://www.busheyk9.co.uk

If you can't be a good example........
you will just have to be a horrible warning
AnnaB
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My first chickens

Post by AnnaB »

Tilly
Get as Wendy said at least 3. I was going to have them in 2's (easier to manage, get to know them well, etc) It has been my biggest mistake.
The 5 I picked up last Sat are doing great. I will need eventually to get the lone one in with them in the day time and as far as the other 2 they are always going to stay separate (unless something happens to one of them).
I saw people last year getting 10, I didn't understand at the time but have now learned the hard way.
Best wishes with it
Anna

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