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Curious about chickens...


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I just wondered how many East Dulwich-ites have gone for a modicum of rurality (?!) and got chickens...

To start the count, we have 2 (Barbara and Margot)...they don't get much time out of their Eglu because of the pesky foxes but are much loved members of the family.

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we were toying with the idea but I was concerned about keeping them cooped up all the time because of the foxes. don;t they like to peck about a bit or are they ok in the eglu? do you move the eglu around much and do they completely demolish the lawn where they have been? sorry if loads of questions but it is something I am interested in.
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Tiddles - ideally they do indeed like to peck around and I give mine at least 2-3 hours a day outside of the run in my garden. But my garden has very high fences and is completely dog proof which means that foxes can't sneak under the fence and drag away a chicken, which is their preferred way. In my garden they have to jump over and show themselves, and then carry the chook back over the fence which they can (and probably would) do, but don't seem to so readily. They prefer to sneak up unnoticed and grab one from under a fence. Plus we have a dog, as does the neighbour who backs on to our garden, so our garden smells of dog, which tends to keep them at bay. We have our Eglu on woodchip, they will definitely trash the lawn, unless you have a big enough lawn to move it weekly and keep it off a used patch for a good few weeks till it has recovered. I never let them out the run unless I am in the house, and at this time of year I don't let them out till about 12.30 and put them back in by 3 or 3.30. So if you can fox proof you fences a bit as I describe, and be careful and vigilant, you will probably be ok, though it's not a certainty. Eglu say they would be fine in a run permanently as long as they have grass and somewhere to have a dust bath.

As a possible alternative you could get two bantams which are much smaller, and would probably be fine just in a run, and maybe going out into the garden when you are out there with them.

They are brilliant company, mine follow me around the garden and go nuts for a slice of brown bread, and we have more fresh eggs than we can use. The kids love them too.

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We let them out in the garden only when we're around with them - I once left them out and went into the kitchen for 10 minutes. When I came back outside there was a fox staring at them from the opposite end of the garden. Rather worrying, particularly as it was a weekday afternoon and I could hear people working in a nearby garden. Since then they get a lot less free range time but cope OK - I give them extra greens (but do seem to get fewer eggs).

We tried moving them round the lawn, but in the end have left them in once place (and sacrificed that patch of grass).

They are a great pet for kids and after 18 months the novelty hasn't worn off.

If you'd like to come and see them, PM me.

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Hi there,

We had 2 chickens in an eglu until last week, they are fantastic pets. One of ours died and we've rehomed our other hen with some friends who already have 3 as we're moving abroad next year.

We'll probably be selling our elgu soon, so if anyone is interested then let me know!


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