• Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of www.chronofhorse.com has single sign-in, so your log in information for one will automatically work for the other. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of The Chronicle of the Horse.



Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You’re responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it—details of personal disputes are likely better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts that violate these rules. Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting, but administrators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts upon request.

Outright inflammatory, vulgar, harassing, malicious or otherwise inappropriate statements and criminal charges unsubstantiated by a reputable news source or legal documentation will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it’s understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users’ profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses – Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it’s related to a horse for sale, regardless of who’s selling it, it doesn’t belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions – Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services – Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products – While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements – Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be “bumped” excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues – Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators’ discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the “alert” button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your “Ignore” list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you’d rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user’s membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 1/26/16)
See more
See less

Talk me out of wanting chickens... seriously

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts
  • Original Poster

    Originally posted by Megaladon View Post
    Well, if you are anything like me, you become emotionally invested and then proceed to worry about them like crazy.
    This is one of my concerns


    • Original Poster

      Originally posted by Bacardi1 View Post
      To the OP. It's idiotic to make a decision on whether or not to have chickens based on responses on an internet board. If you're interested - DO SOME RESEARCH - online or via books (most libraries have a good selection), then make a decision as to whether or not you're up to the task of keeping them.
      "Idiotic" is a bit harsh, but what I really object to is following it up with the command "READ." Apart from the insulting implication - you are too dumb to think of reading unless it's suggested - the comment in my specific case increases the sum total of irony in the universe to dangerous levels.


      • #43
        Originally posted by harnessphoto View Post
        We lock our chickens up at night and haven't lost one to a predator in nearly two years.
        That might depend on where you live.

        I live up against an animal sanctuary in a rural area with a lot of woods. I've seen hawks, fox, possums, racoons, rabbits, deer in the road in front of my house, coyote, fisher cats and even a moose once in my back yard. We have a lot of wildlife up close and personal. We have bears living in the cemetery down the street and I'm pretty sure it was a bear that destroyed my 3 bird feeders in the backyard. And large cats have been seen in the area. I've seen a fox trot out into the yard, take the neighbors chicken and go trotting off in the middle of the day. They say that if you have chickens and lock them up tight at night, if the animals have to they will start coming in the daytime.

        So cross your fingers. Either you do not live in an area with a lot of predatory critters or you have really good luck if you are letting them out during the day!


        • #44
          Originally posted by sketcher View Post
          . . . They say that if you have chickens and lock them up tight at night, if the animals have to they will start coming in the daytime.
          . . .
          Yes, even though we don't live anywhere near a sanctuary we are way out in the country and we have let out 10 chix in the AM and had only 9 return - sometimes they are busy brooding and other times we hunt around and find the *pouf* of feathers. Only one occasion have we had one get away from a predator and been sure of it - at dawn on a Sunday I heard a muffled clucking traveling past our bedroom window and suddenly had this terrible fear - we both bolted out of bed in our jammies and I darned near stepped on the roo, who was hunkered down in the grass in some strange place - his beautiful tail feathers were mostly gone and we found them in clumps heading off towards the neighbors' yard - they of the unconfined dogs . . . it's tough. We had the hen and her chicks confined specially and whatever it was tore the hardware cloth free of its fasteners, got in there and we had two little broken necks and one fluttering and mortally wounded, with big mama clucking like mad and adding to the mess, I was so mad and so sad at the same time . . .
          Courageous Weenie Eventer Wannabe
          Incredible Invisible


          • #45
            And then you have to start deciding whether the skunks and the raccoons and the possums and snakes get to live . . . or die. Just not fun.
            Courageous Weenie Eventer Wannabe
            Incredible Invisible


            • #46
              As someone who has never had a free-range egg, can you guys explain what is different about it? How does it taste compared to the regular cheap eggs at the grocery store? City gal here, sorry guys.


              • #47
                TBPONY, hmmmm, well there is no such thing as a free range egg (although the visual is very funny of an egg rolling along the back paddock). However, a free range chicken is a chicken that is allowed to roam free of a fenced area for a certain amount of time each day. That chicken eats bugs, veggies and other good stuff and will then lay an egg (usually in its coop) that tastes superior to store bought eggs.


                • #48
                  An egg from a chicken that is wandering around at will is very rich, very dark yolked. Sometimes they're almost too rich-I have a fried egg on toast for breakfast every single day and sometimes the yolks are TOO rich!

                  I've had the same 13 chickens for about four years now-they free range most of the time but we do lock them up when we can catch them in the coop at night. I have a LGD but he can't get to where the chickens roost. something tried to grab my white duck this year but only injured her but mostly I have had NO predator problems in years, literally years. I live in extreme NW MT and last winter several dogs were killed by wolves within a mile of my house. Mountain lions, weasels, skunks, coons, wolves, coyotes, all a daily part of life here but my chickens are doing just fine. lock them up at night and let your dog bark sometimes and you'll be fine.

                  If you want. some people just don't like chickens and if that's the case they're easy to give away. Some people think they won't like them and then realize how much personality they have and enjoy the eggs and find out they have a farmer gene and really enjoy them. Nothing ventured...
                  “Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” Stephen R. Covey


                  • #49
                    Originally posted by Bacardi1 View Post

                    Where did you hear that nonsense? Perhaps that's true if your chickens live out 24/7, but certainly not a fact for everyone. My last two girls lived to be 12 & 15 years old. (But then, I was really into taking care of them properly. Go figure.)
                    I've read this in a book too, Storey's Guide, I believe. I think it's a pretty accurate ratio to go by considering my dog took half of my flock.
                    I LOVE my Chickens!


                    • #50
                      Originally posted by mswillie View Post
                      They stink. And if they are free range they range into the neighbors yard shi**ing all over the top of and under said neighbors porch, which, when the temperature gets up much over 75 degrees sets up a stink so bad that the neighbor is forced to close the front of the house.

                      And they range into the neighbors garden, pecking and destroying their tomatoes and other veggies. And once in a while you get a rooster instead of a hen which then begins relentless crowing. At 5 AM. When the neighbor, who would like to open her windows on one of those rare beautiful early summer nights would like to sleep in past dawn on a weekend as she rises daily at 5:30 am to go to work the other 5 days a week.

                      FTR. I'm the neighbor.
                      You know what? Your problem is the neighbor, not the chickens. If they had horses they didnt contain, guess what? They'd be in your yard crapping (BIG) piles of crap, they'd stink and they'd eat your gardens. So the problem here isnt the chickens.


                      • #51
                        I don't have chickens currently- but I did love them dearly and really loved their eggs- compared to store bought eggs- and the thought of the lives of the factory hens- I really feel sick to use store bought eggs.. they look anemic and it's not just looks- the nutrition breakdown between factory farm eggs and true free range grass fed poultry is night and day.

                        Here is a picture of two of my farm eggs compared to a store bought egg.

                        Here is a nutritional chart hosted by Mother Earth News- showing the difference between the nationally accepted egg nutrients- and the TESTED levels in the eggs from pastured flocks of their readers.


                        • #52
                          Originally posted by Salar View Post
                          But, the enabling side of me would suggest they are the most amusing creatures alive. My favorite saying is "who need television when you have chickens"!!
                          We call it chicken TV. One of my favorite things to do is go down to the pen, toss some blueberries and watch the show.

                          I really enjoy my chickens, so I'm not doing to dis-enable anyone.
                          "We're still right, they're still wrong" James Carville


                          • #53
                            Just think that some times we are in love with the IDEA of something, but not necessarily with the realities that may involve.

                            Who would not love to have some cute, fun chickens to care for, eggs you raise yourself for breakfast, when you can forget that the chicken just ate that one baby mice that it found by the flower pot?

                            As far as caring for them, really that should not be a problem.
                            We used sand for bedding in their coop and cleaned it out and put fresh once a week, dusting for mites then.

                            They would take dust baths in the sand in there and so dust themselves clean.

                            We never had a problem with waterers getting dirty, we had the plastic ones with small holes and put that one purple pill in there to keep bugs off.

                            We fed a commercial layer chicken feed and put out oyster shell for them to pick on, plus all kinds of kitchen and garden leftovers.

                            We kept ours in their coop at night and chicken yard in the daytime and never lost one to predators, although we did trap regularly skunks and coons trying to claw in there.
                            Sardines are your friend in those traps.

                            We sold our eggs to the local restaurant and the cook reserved them to make pies, said they were the best for that.

                            Our shelter gets some people wanting to adopt dogs or cats that have not thought past the IDEA of having a critter around for entertainment, forgot or just don't know that they will take resources of time, energy and money to care for.

                            Once they think this thru better, some still want to adopt, a few decide against that.
                            BE SURE you want chickens themselves, not just like the IDEA of having some of them pecking around.


                            • #54
                              Yes, they're a pain... but look how cute they are:

                              My silkies

                              "Dogs give and give and give. Cats are the gift that keeps on grifting." –Bradley Trevor Greive


                              • #55
                                They lay eggs in your horse's stalls and then you have eggs all over everywhere because no one wants to eat them anymore

                                13 hens are too many for my family, after 4 years!


                                • #56
                                  Mites? Do they automatically have them? What do you use to "dust" the coop? I haven't seen my chickens show any signs of mites, so that's why I'm asking. They have dug out a nice spot under the horse trailer for dirt baths though.

                                  I've had 4 hens for a couple months now and they are hilarious. They follow me around like we are in a parade. 2 Rhode Island Reds (Pam and Cheryl), 1 Buff Orphington (she lays the fewest eggs, but is the most pet-like), Lana, and 1 beautiful Brahma, Mallory Archer (there is a theme here). I really want to get an Easter Egger too.They were a year old when I was given them, and I know the breeds were chosen originally for dual purpose and cold hardiness. Think about chicken keeping in the winter as you debate whether or not to get them is my advice.

                                  They free range all day long. I'm going to be sad when a hawk gets one, but so far so good. They are very happy wandering the farm. I am resigned to what may happen.

                                  Free range negative is that they poop here and there. I'm going to be fencing them "out" of my back yard seating area. Our property is surrounded on two sides by woods and on one side by a field and the other is hwy. They show no desire to go 400 feet over to the highway through an exposed pasture, nor do they seem to want to cross the road to my neighbor's (there is too much to do in the woods inbetween).

                                  The eggs are amazing. The yolks are a deep orange.

                                  The biggest drawback is being home 2x a day to take care of them. Vacations are hard. Also, I have spent a lot of money on the coop. Which is much larger than I need for 4 chickens, but I like to be able to walk into it with a wheelbarrow, etc. Also, I will run electricity there before winter so I can do heated waterers. I got a big galvanized hanging waterer for now and I'm glad I went large.

                                  I don't think I would want chickens if they couldn't free range all day. That would be a lot more work and I like that they are eating the spiders and things around the base of the house. They all lay their eggs under the bush by the stoop instead of in their roost, though.

                                  I also think 4 is a really nice number for a family. Enough eggs to give some away, but nothing crazy as far as maintenance/cleaning/feed bills.
                                  DIY Journey of Remodeling the Farmette: http://weownblackacre.blogspot.com/


                                  • #57
                                    Originally posted by chestnutmarebeware View Post
                                    Too adorable!
                                    I LOVE my Chickens!


                                    • #58
                                      Originally posted by kookicat View Post
                                      I like my chickens.

                                      They're really not that much work and while the poop does smell, show me poop that doesn't... It goes in the muck heap with everything else and rots down very nicely.

                                      The eggs are lovely and I get lots of them.

                                      Mine are all ex-battery hens. http://www.bhwt.org.uk/cms/re-home-some-hens/
                                      Aw, those poor hens..I wish there were adoption programs in the US but then Id probably have hundreds of them!
                                      For predators it helps greatly if you can have a dog outside with them. Our dogs are out all day and we used to keep them out most nights too. It wasn't until we let them in every night that we had a predator attack. Of course some peoples' dogs will kill the chickens! But that doesnt fly at my place.


                                      • #59
                                        Originally posted by sketcher View Post
                                        That might depend on where you live.

                                        I live up against an animal sanctuary in a rural area with a lot of woods. I've seen hawks, fox, possums, racoons, rabbits, deer in the road in front of my house, coyote, fisher cats and even a moose once in my back yard. We have a lot of wildlife up close and personal. We have bears living in the cemetery down the street and I'm pretty sure it was a bear that destroyed my 3 bird feeders in the backyard. And large cats have been seen in the area. I've seen a fox trot out into the yard, take the neighbors chicken and go trotting off in the middle of the day. They say that if you have chickens and lock them up tight at night, if the animals have to they will start coming in the daytime.

                                        So cross your fingers. Either you do not live in an area with a lot of predatory critters or you have really good luck if you are letting them out during the day!
                                        We have foxes, coyotes, and hawks. We also have a really good farm dog who keeps the foxes back. We HAVE been lucky on the chicken front. The guinea hens (who like to roost up high, but protest being locked up) have not been as fortunate. It probably helps to have a pretty busy farm and birds that don't stray far.


                                        • #60
                                          Last year our city passed an ordinance allowing 4 hens per household within city limits. We are now the proud owners of 4 Comets, just under a year old. They easily lay 4 eggs a day(even through the winter) and keep us and friends with a more then adequate supply. They are the calmest hens I have ever owned, very quiet and mellow, my neighbors never had a clue we even had chickens till we told them. They are penned 24/7(requirement of the ordinance) and only "talk" when laying. They do not stink and are probably the easiest animal to care for that I have ever owned. Our coop is a 3 sided lean-to type structure off our detached garage. The open side has a strong mesh front and is reinforced to prevent predators from digging into the coop. DH added a roll down cover for the front for when we get really nasty storms, he doesn't want his girls to suffer.

                                          Like any pet, a little planning and thought before purchase goes a long way!