Poultry in Urbania

A group all about how to keep poultry including chickens, bantams,geese and ducks. Help with problems or questions and to brag about your special feathered friends.

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Comment by Jamie on August 22, 2009 at 5:53pm
Yay - at last Simone - remaining Bantam has laid her first egg ( yesterday) , and today Seecil, former caged bird has laid her first one too. So the pressure is off Suga ( who has laid a couple of dozen to date) now and I am a happy 2 egg a day ( well for 2 days anyway) household! Sweet Pea (other bantam) had to be "put down" as her health had not improved despite her and my and the vets best shot at it. She was so feisty too and determined to live too. But the horrible growth on the side of her face did not go down, and her eye was getting infected and it was not good.. She will live on in a korowai though so that's something. Hey Megan, has your hen come back ?
Comment by Megan Cook on August 20, 2009 at 8:54pm
hello, hope this gets seen by the chicken god/dess. We've got hens, first time I've ever had them, all laying well, with us since they were a few days old and now about 9 months. This afternoon one of them, while they were out of the run having a roam and doing some hunt and peck, started standing stock still. Hen then went and hid under some nasturtium, still doing the stock still trick. Her bum feathers were all fluffed out, so she looked a lot bigger in the rear than usual, and there was a little pulsing in and out going on. She's now vanished, hasn't come back to the coop with the others (never happened before - do I sound like the mother of a teenager?). Does anyone have any idea what's going on?
Comment by Janet Luke on August 7, 2009 at 12:28pm
Hi Sarah, the permaculture idea of chicken tractoring that Linda Woodrow talks about is great. This is what I do in my garden and I also run workshops on how to build them. It makes gardening so easy as you are left to do the fun bits like sowing seeds and eating the harvest!!!

My web site is (I'm sorry i can never seem to get a hyperlink going on this page?) I have Photos of the domes in the 'Janets garden gallery ' page and in the Green Courses- keeping chickens in the city workshop. Pleae have a look, hope it helps.
Comment by Sarah Gathercole on August 7, 2009 at 8:58am
Thanks Penny, that's helpful, I'll have a look on Amazon.
Comment by Penny Guy on August 7, 2009 at 7:27am
Hi Sarah. I suggest you read The Permaculture Home Garden by Linda Woodrow. She lays out a scheme for incorporating chickens into the garden and one of her examples is a 4.5m X 4.5m back yard with 3 silkies in a 1.4m diameter dome that is moved around the garden. The benefit of this scheme is that the chickens dig and fertilise your garden beds for you. It is an Australian book and doesn't seem to beheld by any British libraries. Amazon sell it and it is also available from various other on-line retailers.
Comment by Sarah Gathercole on August 7, 2009 at 5:10am
I would love to have some chickens, despite my husband telling me we don't have enough space. I have put a proposal forward to scrap the lawn as it's no use to us and repace it with more veg beds and a small chicken run. I don't want many chickens, happy with just 2 or 3, but I know nothing about them and am not sure how much space even just a couple would need ideally. They are not going to be able to be free roaming as we have no fence round our garden so the run will be their only space. Any advice welcome!
Comment by Helen Leggatt on August 6, 2009 at 1:34pm
Cheers Jamie. Just a thought - compared to their lit cages my chook house is probably quite dark (although they're free to leave it as soon as sun rises). I wonder if this could be putting back their lay? Hmmm
Comment by Jamie on August 6, 2009 at 1:28pm
Hi Helen, I have 2 rescued caged girls since mid June, and have only had 12 eggs total, and all from the same girl. Am starting to be a bit unsure about the other, and I think settling does take time. I just think after being forced by light etc to lay furiously a rest is well- deserved.
Comment by Helen Leggatt on August 5, 2009 at 5:20pm
Hmm, should I be concerned. I have had the chooks since mid-May (rescued caged girls) and it's now early August and only one is laying, as far as I can ascertain. I have checked the undergrowth etc (they are free rangers) and can find no hidden stashes of eggs... isn't this rather a long time for them to be off the lay? Might I be doing something wrong? (I've had chooks for near on 5 yrs but these are first rescued girls). They are Hylines.
Comment by Nikki Dillon on August 1, 2009 at 2:02pm
My chooks are first timers too. The 3 kids had them from Santa at around 11 weeks. The Wyandotes started laying in June, and the Orpington started last week. They really do make good presents for children, don't they. Chickens we've had previously never totally stopped laying but only laid one or two a week for 6 weeks or so over winter. We're told that Orpingtons keep laying well once they get started though - I'll let you know next year!

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