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Country Discussion Topics
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New to chicken rearing, need some advice.
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shan    Posted 05-28-2002 at 13:07:36       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Hi There,

I've recently been given a gift of six rhode island reds. They have just begun to lay for me, Im being given five lovely eggs a day and am really chuffed, most of them are double yolked too!!....My other half has built a run for them, its 20ft by 6ft by 7ft tall and they have a lovely house attached they can come and go to all day long if they wish. The one thing Im not sure about is the floor(inside)at the moment its concrete with a layer of straw, which I remove a couple of times a week and clean up their 'dirt' using pressure hose. Two questions..
1. Do I use a disinfectant, and if so which one is the best, Im afraid of bleach and its effects, and jeys fluid may taint the eggs??
2. How do I go about making a permanent floor out of peat...being in Ireland and very close to all the bogs here I have access to do I put it down, how often do I change it and what do I put down with it.
Sorry its such a long post, I'd appreciate any help anyone can give me.

Angie James    Posted 06-21-2004 at 10:07:17       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Please can someone advise me what to do as chicks hatch out. I had 3 hens sitting on more than 14 eggs for 3 weeks, I have just found a dead chick, so I have taken one of the hens put her in a huge crate in my tack room, with 11 eggs , which she is now happily sitting on. One of the eggs is a duck egg! So I guess more chicks will hatch now, do I keep her isolated, with chicks or do I take the chicks away as they hatch? What do I feed them on? The hen is a Barnevelder? I have 4 hens 1 cockeral 2 ducks. Please help!! Love this website. Thanks.

margaret    Posted 06-14-2004 at 01:46:20       [Reply]  [Send Email]
two of my frends and i want to set up a poultry farm. we need advice on how to start - the scale of operations, the likely problems that could be encountered and how to prevent them from the start and other information that we may require to start a successful business.

Tom A    Posted 05-30-2002 at 04:30:10       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Hi Shan!

We use a 70-100 year old coop to house our hens, and it has a cement floor. The hens wander all over our farm during the day, and come to the coop to eat, water, and lay when they feel like it; they come home to roost in there at night.

We put a layer of straw down on the concrete. We swap out the straw periodically, but no-where near as often as you are doing. Our hens have stayed very healthy (knock wood), so I don't think there's a real need for all the extra work unless you do it for fun. I disinfected the place with a strong bleach solution before we got our chicks some years ago but have never disinfected the coop again since. I do disinfect our separate brooder annually when we add a few new chicks to the flock. Every 6 months or so we clean everything in the coop...take out all the straw and the roosts and scrape and wash it all down, let it dry and return it all.

One thing I'm concerned about is introducing health problems by hosing out too often. If the roosts are damp at all, the hens can develop feet problems (including arthritis) because of the damp environment. We had a couple of cases of bumblefoot a few years ago, and I suspect it was due in part because I returned the roosts to the coop while they were still damp after cleaning. (By the way, our vet came up with a pretty good treatment for bumblefoot so if you ever have a problem with it, write me).

Sorry, I don't have any firsthand knowledge of using peat for a floor, but I think I remember hearing/reading that some folks use it in place of straw over their concrete floor. Might be something to consider, if it is cheaper there than straw or other bedding.

good luck. Enjoy your hens!

Tom A

sara baker    Posted 01-27-2008 at 16:25:51       [Reply]  [Send Email]
i think my duck might have bumblefoot. what would be a good way to treat it?

Sarah    Posted 01-19-2008 at 05:54:04       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Can you tell me how old a chick needs to be before it can be housed outside? I have two hens of 13 weeks and at the moment they are in the shed as I was told they were too young to go outside. Many Thanks

Patrick    Posted 06-16-2007 at 13:53:33       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Am very new into chicken rearing nd have just completed the five star hotel for my chicks..can someone give me an insight into the challenge apparently am in Uganda & the information is very out dated.

oinebye bruce kamunanwure    Posted 03-28-2008 at 07:41:41       [Reply]  [Send Email]
need to begin rearing chickenfor biz

Ja    Posted 05-20-2004 at 01:29:28       [Reply]  [No Email]

Linda Bradley    Posted 07-14-2004 at 06:55:38       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Dear Tom

I have chooks on a concrete floor and I have just been told by a vet to take it up because it has caused one of my hens to have bumblefoot. What is the cure that your vet has suggested, I would love to know.


Michelo Hamweetwa    Posted 01-05-2004 at 00:28:51       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I am equally new to chickhen rearing in particular layers. Thus i am interested in information that helps one to manage their hens well.

Jim REILLY    Posted 07-22-2003 at 11:18:16       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I am presently looking after 6 chickens whilst my neighbour is on holiday. I have been told to fill their feeder and water once a day and to give them a banana in the afternoon.
My problem is that a couple of the hens are remaining in the coop all day and have done so for the last three days. I am worried that these birds do not appear to be eating or drinking and I am concerned as to their welfare.
MY neighbours are presently in France and I cannot contact them. There are no persons in the neighbourhhood who have chickens or who can advise.

sHan    Posted 05-29-2002 at 05:30:35       [Reply]  [Send Email]
hey you stole my name LOL is shan short for somthing or is that all mine is shan thats it just woundering by the way youll love the reds the eggs are great we had about 15 of them awile back we finly sold them because we were gone a lot and its hard to find sombody to care for them you can trust but i wish i had them back.lots of luck shan...........

DeadCarp    Posted 05-28-2002 at 20:31:11       [Reply]  [No Email]
Peat's more for plants than animals isn't it? I know it has some nasty ingredients that kill tree & grass seeds and dissolve (2 out of 3 elements in) granite. I'd research it on the net before having hens scratch and peck in a lot of it. might be a good idea - i dunno.

Les...fortunate    Posted 05-28-2002 at 15:29:26       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Wow, both of you guys are really serious about this aren't you? The only time my father, who was in the egg business back in the 40s and 50s and knew his poultry, ever disinfected a chicken house was before putting in a new group of hatchlings. Manure under the roost was cleaned out once a year.
Never had a cement floor but that would probably be fine and certainly would make it easy to clean. Chickens like to scratch. We always gave them shavings and sawdust for this purpose and even a little hay now and then. I don't know why dried peat wouldn't work just fine, too.

F14    Posted 05-28-2002 at 15:16:03       [Reply]  [No Email]
As far as cleaning, I have 30 birds living in a 10x12 coop, that run free all over the farm in the daytime. I change the straw on the floor and in the nesting boxes every couple of weeks in the winter, less often in the summer. After cleaning up the old straw, before putting down fresh, I scrape the floor with a flat-nosed shovel to clean up all the loose stuff. Wear respiratory protection while doing this, the dust from the manure will really raise he11 with your lungs.

Once or twice a year, I wash the whole coop down with a pressure washer and a very mild solution of disinfectant soap and a bit of bleach, and rinse with clear water.

Can't help ya on the peat thing, never done that.

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