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You are Here: Home -> Forums -> Maryland -> New To Chicken Keeping in Maryland

Topic: New To Chicken Keeping in Maryland (2 messages)

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New To Chicken Keeping in Maryland (2 messages)
Posted By Message Posted On Report
Score: 0
First year, first winter with hens. Learning, learning, learning!
I live near the Chesapeake Bay, in the southern part of Maryland. This is my first year raising chickens. My coop and associated enclosure is on ground level. I've been keeping the hens in the enclosure the past two weeks due to loosing 2 hens to predators (I live in the woods. I need to know what I can do to keep the ground of the enclosure (dirt) dry and safe for the birds feet. I also need ideas on keeping them entertained, both with food and anything else. I have just purchased the Peck Pen, to allow them some range daily yet safe from birds. I'm open to all and any suggestions/opinions. Thanks.
1/17/2016 1:58 PM report abuse

Score: 51
Survived our first winter in Montana. Girls did well even when it got to -22.
My run got muddy this winter. A few inches of sand was added topped with pine shavings. The girls had slowed down to just 1 egg a day for several days. Two days after the sand and shavings were added they were back to laying 6-8 eggs a day.

I also had trouble with a predator, a fox. Lost all but 2 of my girls a couple years ago and those 2 were so traumatized they stopped laying. Last spring I bought electric poultry netting and surrounded their coop and run with it. It gives them about 1000 square feet of relatively safe area for free ranging. The brand of fencing I bought is called Premier 1. If you go on YouTube and search for electric poultry fencing and/or electric poultry fencing and foxes or bears you'll get to watch some interesting videos on the fencing working. A member on another forum bought this fencing. Before he had it he was losing lots of birds to predators. In the 3 years he has used the electric netting he has lost one bird to a hawk. None to 4 legged predators.
1/19/2016 10:44 PM report abuse