GENERAL GUIDELINES – These are our general guidelines for keeping ducks, chickens, geese and quail. We recommend personal research is also done prior to the purchase of our poultry.
WHAT SUPPLIES DO I NEED FOR MY CHICKENS?
· Chick crumb (until four weeks old)
· Growers Pellets (for up until they are put on layers pellets at sixteen weeks)
· Layers Pellets/Mash (From sixteen weeks onwards)
· Oyster Shell and Grit (for growers onwards)
o Treats should all be fed in moderation to ensure that your chickens eat enough of their core diet of pellets
· If you are purchasing chicks (from day old until six weeks) they will require a heat lamp.
· The best bedding to use for chicks is a fine wood shaving.
· The best bedding for growers or point of lay chickens is straw or wood shavings.
· For chicks – a large box or rabbit hutch
· For growers and point of lay – a fox proof house/shed
o This should be well ventilated, dry and include perches dependent upon the breed.
· A large run or fenced area with wind protection, some sun shade and safe from the fox.
· Some breeds of chickens can be good flyers so ensure your run is completely enclosed.
· Chickens will need to be let out of their coop early in the morning and provided with feed and fresh drinking water at all times.
· A tub of sand is advisable as chickens love to dust bathe and it is a great method of keeping the mites/lice away
o We also add diatomaceous earth for extra mite/lice prevention
· Keep the chicken coops clean to keep your hens as healthy as possible. We recommend a full clean with fresh bedding weekly.
· We also advise a weekly check of your hens to check their health – this includes looking at the colour of wattle and comb, checking for mites/lice, weight and feather condition.
· A wormer can be fed to the chickens every six months – always check the product for specifications.
· Chickens will require putting away in a fox proof house at dusk to keep them safe.
· On average and with enough light source chickens will lay at approximately 18 weeks onwards
o Some breeds may lay later than this
· A light source can be used in the winter to keep your hens laying longer.