Monday, June 15, 2020

Frequently Asked Questioins

Frequently Asked Questions

How many eggs will they lay?
About 1 egg each and every day! With the standard rental (2 hens) you will get about 1 dozen eggs per week. Our coops are designed to house 2-6 hens and with each one laying 6 days a week that's up to 3 dozen eggs from Monday to Sunday! That should be more than enough for the family and, if they're nice, the neighbors too!

What are the benefits of raising chickens?
You may not know this but chickens have amazing personalities. They will come when called, let you pick them up, let you rock them to sleep on your lap (especially on the swing-set) and will follow you around the backyard while you're gardening. They are also natural composters! They will eat all of your unwanted table scraps and will turn them into delicious and nutritious eggs.  They are also great at pest control. The hens actively seek out spiders, bees, beetles, stinkbugs and they love ticks! Did we mention you get eggs?!?! And don't forget the feathers!

What about their feathers?
Feathers are an often overlooked product of backyard chickens. Silver and Gold Laced Wyandottes are examples of Our Farm's breeds with the most collectible feathers. As the chickens molt they naturally shed feathers! Keeping the coop clean is the secret to feather collecting success! You can find lots of creative feather ideas on websites like Etsy. Here's a link: https://www.etsy.com/search?q=chicken%20feathers

Are chickens noisy?
No. The male chicken (rooster) is the only noisy one of the bunch and we don't provide or keep those. This means Our Farm's hens do NOT lay fertile eggs. Hens are generally very quiet and only make noise when they are in distress or after laying an egg. This egg noise is known as an "egg song" and usually lasts less than 10 seconds :) Other than that, they make a nice soft clucking noise from time to time which we've been told is actually a bit therapeutic. 

Are the chicken coops predator proof?
They are predator resistant. We add a wire bottom to prevent digging, they also have specialized latches, and the coop is made from the sturdiest materials that will last for years. 

Will the hens get along with my pet?
Yes. 
First, there is no need to worry about your cat being a problem for the hens. We have yet to hear about any problems between cats and hens.
For dogs, it depends on their individual personalities. Some dogs are fine right away while most take about a week of training for you to become comfortable enough to allow them to share the yard with the hens unsupervised. A select few take longer than a week. Some dogs take longer in between certain steps but they all get there eventually. 

Will the hens run away?
No. Most hens will stay within 50 ft. of the coop at all times even if you don't have a fence.  Very rarely will they wander and when they do they always come back to the coop.

Do chickens bite?
They don't bite, but they do peck at almost everything. Our chickens are family-friendly.  We raise them by hand until they are 5 months old and start laying eggs. They are very social and are definitely not your grandmother's chickens :)  

Do chickens smell?
No. As long as you change their bedding once a week and move the coop every couple of weeks you won't smell a thing. We use pine shavings for their bedding which soak up the moisture and covers up any remaining smell. 

I'm having trouble catching them. What should I do?
The Plymouth Barred Rocks in particular are one of the nicest breeds of hen. You will find that they actually enjoy human interaction so this experience will be very rare. If you are having a hard time catching them, remember that the faster you move, the faster they move. We recommend walking up to them slowly and then swooping in quickly with both hands. While walking towards them, herd them back towards the coop (with the door open) instead of away from it. Even if you can't get close enough to catch them, they will eventually hop back in the coop. You can also train them from the start of the rental to come when called. Say "Come on" and give them a blueberry every time you come out to see them and you'll find that no matter where they are in your yard they will come running/waddling towards you :)

What other services/options are available?
-Vacation sitting in your own coop
-Over-Wintering your hens at Our Farm 
-Unique breeds when available at additional costs

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