Friday, February 13, 2009

City Chickens

I've been running through ideas for the Patio Farm project in my "spare" time. Mostly I've been getting hung up on sustainable protein and fertility. It is such a small space. I want to do chickens, but I'm afraid they need too much room.

When I checked my email this morning I found this message from some other city friends.

"Yes, thought we'd share the news- we are getting chickens! Feb 25th, six lucky young red star chicks will grace our presence.
HELP!!!!

T"

They have been flirting with the idea of chickens for a while, but had been held off by the zoning regulations and the shear newness of it. It is probably illegal to have chickens or other farm animals where they live so these will have to be stealth chickens. I've never raised that few chickens before, or had to deal with zoning or neighbor issues. I can cover most of the general management issues, but could use some suggestions on micro-scale chicken keeping. Any books, suggestions, tips, etc. would be appreciated. I did send them a link to McMurray Hatchery for this brilliant stealth house.


Hen Condo

5 comments:

Heather said...

Golly, that does not look like a very big condo for 6 chickens. My girls, of which there are 7, have a big old hunk of backyard and yet I overwhelmingly feel that it's not enough room for them. If I did it all over again I'd get 4 and that would still probably be pushing the limits - chickens will eat the green down to nothing in no time!

Happy Spring Robert and Happy Planting!

nancybond said...

There was quite a (ridiculous) kafuffle here in Nova Scotia's capital city about just this thing. http://tinyurl.com/dy3esh if you care to read a short news clip about it. Some cities are much more progressive about it, I understand. It seems a very stupid thing when you're allowed to keep pit bull dogs in your backyard, but not three little chickens, on your property.

henbogle said...

I'm with Heather, the condo looks more like an NYC hotel room. If the goal is to keep hens humanely, I have to wonder if keeping them in such a small space, where they don't even have an unobstructed view, much less room to flap about and dust bathe, etc., really meets the goal.

As for the patio food system, if meat needs to be part of the system, how about bunnies? Or does it have to be meat at all, what about beans and grains, and cover crops for fertility?

It is an interesting project to think over!

inadvertent farmer said...

I saw that in their catalog...it is definately interesting. My hens would go on egg strike if the were contained in such a small space. Then again I have spoiled, indulged chickens!

Let us know how it goes! Kim

F_M said...

I agree that it sure looks small. The site for that product says 2 to 3 hens, but it looks barely enough for 1.

And $500???

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