A Comment About Roosters, How Much To Feed and more

John : Thanks for the latest newsletter. About roosters fighting : we had bantams when I was a kid. We had a rooster called Joey and a hen called Maggie. Maggie was allowed to sit on her eggs, and produced another rooster whose name I forget. Anyway, Joey’s son and Joey used to fight, so we had to separate them. It seemed surprising to us at the time that family members would fight, but come to think of it, the same thing happens with human beings! John

Gloria : Any tips for egg eating chickens??

My Reply : There are some tips in the article here : http://www.keepingchickensnewsletter.com/june2017/ways-to-stop-hens-from-eating-their-eggs.htm and also a video showing a simple ‘rollaway’ nestbox idea which prevents them having the chance to get at the eggs if they can’t be persuaded to stop any other way. Hope that helps!

inquisitive chick

Jabab : Good morning. I want to start a backyard poultry with ten layers. How much feeds in kilos will I need for brooding, growing and the laying periods?

My Reply : It can vary depending on the size of the chickens, any other food they might have available to them (if free ranging for instance) and also if you have any freeloaders such as rats or other wild birds helping themselves to the food if it is left uncovered. As a rough guide it is likely you would need 10-12kg of chick food to get your ten chicks through their first 4 weeks and they could get through around 50kg of chick/grower in total by the end of their first 12 weeks. Depending on all the different variables you may find they get through 30-35kg a month as adults.

Miko : hi, I have a rescue bantam she started to moult in winter for a little time, I have no idea of the age she is, but she is still full of life, any ideas? rgds Miko

My Reply : It is normal for chickens to have a main moult once a year after they are 18 months old so she is likely to now be at least two and a half years old.

2017-09-09T22:25:06+00:00

10 Comments

  1. chicken nipples September 10, 2017 at 1:34 am

    I always get concerned about how much to feed, so I bought a feeder that rats and mice can not get into, It holds 5kg, I check it every 4 days, it has never run out, plus I use chicken nipples on a lge container for water, two of the best things I ever invested in for my girls.

  2. Lori Price September 10, 2017 at 8:59 am

    I want to start keeping chickens starting in the spring. It is now only the two of us so how many laying chickens should I get? I was thinking 2 or 3, but I don’t want so many eggs that they go to waste. Also is it best to raise a hen from a chick or buy an adult hen? I have heard you never really know the age of the hen when you buy an adult.

  3. Gina September 10, 2017 at 11:32 am

    If you just want eggs and to enjoy watching them in their yard it is easier to buy pullets that are at point of lay or older as chicks require a lot of care. There are benefits to raising from chicks though if you can be sure of getting the 2-3 girls you want (a rooster with only 2 hens would not be ideal), such as having the opportunity to handle them as they grow which gives more likelihood of their being tamer as adults. It also can be a very rewarding experience in general (although not without it’s downsides and stresses if things ‘go wrong’). Three hens that are from a breed known for their good egg laying should give you two eggs a day in their prime.

  4. John September 10, 2017 at 6:43 pm

    Hello, Gina
    Thanks for another interesting newsletter. I have a question. Recently I stopped at a roadside stall to buy some eggs from two boys. The eggs were offered for 50 cents each. I saw that two of the eggs were blue. I asked if they were duck eggs, but the boys assured me they were chicken eggs. I bought five eggs, including one of the blue ones. Is it very unusual for chicken eggs to be blue? What causes the colour change? John

  5. Gina September 10, 2017 at 7:33 pm

    There are a few breeds which do lay blue eggs such as Ameraucanas, Araucanas and Cream Legbars. Those known as ‘Easter Egger’ chickens are a hybrid breed originating from Ameraucanas and Araucanas and can potentially lay a blue egg (but it also could be other pastal shades including just a normalish white or brown).

  6. Dolly Lundberg September 11, 2017 at 2:58 am

    I enjoyed the squibs about my favorite animals…….My flock just passed on to a younger family to take care of my 6 dear birds;….I am recovering from a hard illness at 85 years young. My chicks hens were 6 years old and I could no longer care for them. Thank you for sharing your letters with others.
    Dolly Lundberg,

  7. Darlene Belac September 11, 2017 at 1:12 pm

    I have a coop full of chickens that I love, but I recently bought a 2 y.o. male peacock. He is in a separate pen of course but he needs a girlfriend. Does anyone have on where I can get a female or eggs to hatch. I live in south east PA.
    THX!
    Lene

  8. Jeff Wykel September 11, 2017 at 9:52 pm

    I have an Ameriaucanas rooster and he’s bred my regular hens and the offspring lay blue eggs.

  9. Margaret September 12, 2017 at 4:46 pm

    I have a lot of rooster in a variety of breeds, some will squabble a bit but most cohabitate nicely if they are raised together.

  10. Julie Jones September 13, 2017 at 1:44 am

    Chicken Nipples,
    Where did you find the chicken feeder that squirrels, rats and mice cannot get into?

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