area for chooks

HI I am getting some chickens soon and are biulding a run. wanting to know if there is a rule of thumb of how much space need per chicken. We are a family of 6 so were thinking of 6-8 chickens.

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  • IMHO I'd give all you can. fence off an area as large as you can give (chicken wire), and put mesh around your vege gardens. Mine have the free range of my whole back yard (approx 200+ sm). It's a little more work, to make it chicken proof, but in my opinion, if you can't give them the space, you shouldn't have them in the first place. It means they can free range and don't tear up the lawn or garden. If they have a small space, they will. I know there's a guide of about 1or 2 meters per chicken, but seriously? I think at that rate they're not free range hens anymore, they are cooped. If that's ok for you, then fine, but that's the decision the urban chicken keeper has to decide. I wouldn't feel happy keeping chickens in such a minimal space. The minimum space is the recommendation based on minimum humane keeping of the animal. Don't get too stressed about the distance to neighbors, etc. As stated unless someone complains, there's no problem. Flick your neighbor some eggs, I'm sure they'll be fine. Make your your chickens really happy and let them have the most you can give.

  • Both Akl Council and SPCA have very low minimum space requirements according to their websites. I kept 6 in a 5 sq m run, including 1 sq m of 'house'. They fought over food a bit and are less agressive now they are down to 3 in the same area. The 1 sq m of house was plenty for 6 as they sleep close together to keep warm and share nesting boxes for laying. Council max is 6 birds per property and NO roosters. There are also rules on proximity to neighbors property (min 10m) and boundaries (min 3m) but unless your neighbours complain the council wont know. Mine were raised very free range and need a good supply of insects and worms. I feed them waste from my local veg shop and bakery plus a bit of grain feed. They love meat and will eat pigs liver at $3.50 a kg. I also grind up the egg shells and feed them back to them for calcium. BTW thanks for offering to babysit mine - Ive accepted an offer from Devonport which is closer.

  • 4 foot squared per chook outside (which i think it about in the middle of what Sarah has said? Im no good at conversion!), 2ft in the coop.
  • I think I remember reading somewhere that its 1-2 square meters per chicken.
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