Density of chickens?

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bodrighy
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Density of chickens?

Post: # 151046Post bodrighy
Sat Apr 18, 2009 9:36 pm

Not how clever or thick are they :lol: How many in a given space. I have just aquired a hen hose from free cycle and so can now start to get serious and look for some hens though I want to tart it up a bit first. Our aim is for 6 birds eventually but the house is only 4' x 2' and looking for some idea of size general opinion seems to vary fro 3 to 5 for this size house. Sace for a run will be mixed as we will be allowing them ro rioam a bit, depending on how adventurous they are and will be eventually giving them a run that is a goo 25' x 10' in a wooded area. How many birds however can be comfortably housed in the house I will be fitting externally accessed nesting boxes on the sides so the space wil be all perching squatting etc inside.

Pete
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Thomzo
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Re: Density of chickens?

Post: # 151186Post Thomzo
Mon Apr 20, 2009 7:56 pm

Hi
It depends on how much time they are going to spend in there. If it is just for sleeping/nesting, then your house should be plenty big enough for 6. I've seen chickens confined to this sort of space (and battery hens have even less) so it's really up to you. Defra's website gives guidelines for density of barn hens if you want to check that.

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Re: Density of chickens?

Post: # 151203Post bodrighy
Mon Apr 20, 2009 10:59 pm

Thanks Zoe. The plan is that it would be mailny a sleeping and laying area. I have built removable nest boxes on the back that can be lifted off to give cleaning access. Unless they are bone idle and don't want to most of their time will be in what I hope to be a large run in the wooded area of the garde,. Just got to get the fencing sorted then I can start looking for birds. I have read that they need at least 9" per bird perching space so with what I have at the moment that would allow for 4 birds. Either I knock up another perch and go for the 6 we want or stick with 4 until we can expand.

Pete

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Re: Density of chickens?

Post: # 151360Post bodrighy
Tue Apr 21, 2009 9:46 pm

Measured out the run I can put in to get started. The house is 4' x 2' with a large nesting box on the outside and the run is 12' x 4' including underneath the coop. We are getting 3 hybrids from someone our landlady gets hers from in about a month or so so I have time to get some more netting and expand and also make sure that the run is as predator proof as possible. The bottom of the wire is going to have a sort of wall around it that will be on the outside. with the wire sort of buried in the stone work. I will need to have some sort of liid on it as well I should imagine as it is in amongst trees and I have heard that foxes can climb a bit. It's like a survival course innit :shock:

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Re: Density of chickens?

Post: # 151466Post Thomzo
Wed Apr 22, 2009 7:35 pm

Given that I saw a fox at ten o'clock the other morning, I'd be careful. Having said that, I am currently making a new run. My neighbour reckons that six foot high fence should be ok to keep foxes out. To be on the safe side, I'm planning a smaller area that's completely covered that I can comfine the hens to when I'm not going to be home in time to put them to bed.

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bodrighy
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Re: Density of chickens?

Post: # 152045Post bodrighy
Mon Apr 27, 2009 9:36 pm

Managed to get 501 of chicken wire from Freecycle today so the hens will ahve a larger run than I expected. It will be about 20' x 10' and totally full of weeds, a few bushes and shrubs and part of an old rockery. I will be laying mesh down on the outside floor which will soon get grown through with the lamium and bramble that's there. I also have a small willow fence about 8" away from it so what with the tree and shrub roots, the netting and the fence I am hoping that the bottom of the fence will be reasonably secure. Now I have to sort out the top of it. Found out foxes do climb trees if the incventive is there and we also have jays and magpies so will have to keep an eye out until we get the top half secure. As we are only getting 3 (free) hens and possibly a cockerel to start off I reckon this should be enough space for them. Unles of course any of you experts think otherwise?

pete
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