NFU Mutual Smallholding Insurance

Author Topic: stock levels  (Read 2460 times)

jacob and Georgina

  • Joined May 2010
stock levels
« on: August 01, 2010, 11:17:04 pm »
hi all just a quick 1 from me, i have been researching hen house sizes on the internet and was quite amazed at how many hens some manufactureres were recommending for their housing!! i wouldn't dream of putting half the recommended number in some of them, i am sure a lot of this is marketing and would hope people don't go buy this, so i was wandering what area in a coop you would allow per bird?? i have heard 1mX1m or 3feetX3feet which sounds about right or am i being too generous?? can you be too generous, probably not!  :-\
Voss Electric Fence

Womble

  • Joined Mar 2009
  • Stirlingshire, Central Scotland
Re: stock levels
« Reply #1 on: August 02, 2010, 01:47:15 am »

Agreed!  I based our coop on a commercial design for "up to 12 birds", and I reckon up to six would be comfortable in there, or maybe eight if you absolutely had to.

Surely part of it depends on how long the birds actually spend in there though. Ours go inside to sleep and lay, but are always outside the rest of the time.  If I wanted to improve the lot of our girls then, I'm pretty sure they'd prefer a run extension to a bigger house!
"All fungi are edible. Some fungi are only edible once." -Terry Pratchett

Rosemary

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: stock levels
« Reply #2 on: August 02, 2010, 09:21:58 am »

Ours go inside to sleep and lay, but are always outside the rest of the time.  If I wanted to improve the lot of our girls then, I'm pretty sure they'd prefer a run extension to a bigger house!

I'd agree with this absolutely. Since we're moving and penning the hens for the first time o protect the garden, I checked out the Soil Association standards. Basically, 6 birds / square metre for the house, 1 nest box / 6 hens, 18cm of aerial perch space per hen and 10 square metre of range.

They also recommend that the range should be rested for 9 months between batches - so effectively you need 30 square metres per hen, divided in to three areas, with the hens spending 20 weeks on each.

There are lots of other standards too but these are the main ones.

The house we have can accommodate, on this basis, 24 (floor area), 48 (perch length) and 42 (nestboxes). We're going for 40, based on the fact that they are rarely indoors.

ellisr

  • Joined Sep 2009
  • Wales
Re: stock levels
« Reply #3 on: August 02, 2010, 09:55:11 am »
Rules for inside housing seem to be 1' square per bird and outside to be classed as free range is 1m square, I think the outside space is not adequate but as for the inside housing mine just all huddle together in the smallest space so 1' square sounds about right

jacob and Georgina

  • Joined May 2010
Re: stock levels
« Reply #4 on: August 02, 2010, 02:48:02 pm »
well mine seem to do that as well so perhaps 1 foot square is plenty per bird, they will be free range so only in house at night and whilst laying!! thanks for replies any more would  be gratly appreciated  ;)

Sharondp

  • Joined Jun 2009
Re: stock levels
« Reply #5 on: August 02, 2010, 04:24:29 pm »
You can give them the biggest coop in the world but I can guarantee they'll be huddled up together in the smallest corner at night time! AND they'll all use the same nest box!  ::)

ellisr

  • Joined Sep 2009
  • Wales
Re: stock levels
« Reply #6 on: August 02, 2010, 04:49:08 pm »
When I had the big shed mine used to queue so they could use the same nest box even though there were 8 nest boxes

jacob and Georgina

  • Joined May 2010
Re: stock levels
« Reply #7 on: August 02, 2010, 05:49:56 pm »
yea mine 2 infact i went 2 clean them out this morning and found 2 just about squazed in to 1 nest box can never understand it!!  ???

northfifeduckling

  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Fife
    • North Fife Blog
Re: stock levels
« Reply #8 on: August 03, 2010, 03:14:57 pm »
I have 4 in a house made for 6-8 , that would be one on each perch at night. In the winter they huddle together really close...
2 in one nesting box could suggest that one is broody  ;D :&>:chook:

jacob and Georgina

  • Joined May 2010
Re: stock levels
« Reply #9 on: August 03, 2010, 05:44:07 pm »
nope definately not broody never had that as they are hybrids so rarely go broody i think they were just both wanting to lay an egg at the same time?? went back 30mins later to find two eggs??

northfifeduckling

  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Fife
    • North Fife Blog
Re: stock levels
« Reply #10 on: August 03, 2010, 06:53:30 pm »
silly things...bet you have more than one box  ;D

jacob and Georgina

  • Joined May 2010
Re: stock levels
« Reply #11 on: August 03, 2010, 09:43:35 pm »
i have 3 and only 6 hens at the moment!! would be interesting to hear their reasoning as to why they all share 1 nest box!!

 

stock levels

Started by jacob and Georgina

Replies: 8
Views: 2187
Last post April 09, 2012, 09:13:15 pm
by chrismahon
Incubation tips & humidity & temp levels:

Started by Shropshirelass

Replies: 3
Views: 1213
Last post March 04, 2013, 10:49:57 am
by Shropshirelass
Selling all my stock

Started by nails

Replies: 11
Views: 3166
Last post September 11, 2011, 04:38:59 pm
by nails
Dying stock

Started by doreen

Replies: 7
Views: 1880
Last post September 16, 2012, 03:37:33 pm
by doreen
New poultry stock

Started by harry

Replies: 23
Views: 1156
Last post March 28, 2019, 04:46:19 pm
by harry

Forum sponsors

FibreHut Energy Helpline Thomson & Morgan Time for Paws Scottish Smallholder & Grower Festival Little Peckers

© The Accidental Smallholder Ltd 2003-2019. All rights reserved.

Design by Furness Internet

Site developed by Champion IS