Over the last few years, there has been an increase in the number of hens that people keep in their homes, and these numbers have been increasing since the global pandemic and the cost-of-living increasing. People frequently ask the same questions when considering getting some hens for their garden to help ensure they take excellent care of them. Below are some of the most commonly asked questions so you can get your home prepared if you are considering getting some egg-laying hens for your home.
How Many Hens Can I Get?
The answer to this question will depend on a few factors, such as whether you are adopting hens or buying them and how much space you have available. Many charities, such as BHWT.org.uk, have a limit of twenty hens you can adopt in one go, but there are no limits when buying them.
How Much Space Do The Chickens Need?
You will need to ensure you have enough space for each hen, which will allow them to exercise and have enough room to live comfortably. Below is a rule of thumb to help you determine how much space is required.
Floorspace inside chicken coop: 30 square centimetres per bird
Perch Space Inside Chicken Coop: 25 centimetres per bird
Outside Chicken Run: One square meter per bird
Ensure that the hens have plenty of space to roam and roost, and they will be happy and productive egg layers.
Should I Buy Or Build A Chicken Coop?
Whether you buy or build a chicken coop will depend on how good your DIY skills are, and you need to ensure that your chicken coop keeps your hens safe and secure. You must protect them from predators and ensure they do not get stressed too much, reducing their egg-laying. There are plenty of chicken coops and chicken runs for sale, so it is simple to find everything you need and ensure it is of excellent quality with enough space.
What About My Other Pets?
If you have other animals in your house, such as cats or dogs, there is a chance they can get on with the hens and live happily together. The hens you adopt often have no fear, so they will happily mix with other pets in your home. However, you need to ensure you introduce the animals in a supervised and controlled environment first and do not leave them alone to mingle together at first.
What Do I Feed Them?
The best option for food for your hens is to buy good quality chicken feed with natural and organic ingredients. There are plenty of options available you can buy, and you can also feed them scraps from your kitchen. You can provide your hens with fruit and vegetables, and cooked rice and pasta are okay, but ensure you do not give them too much.
These are some of the common questions people ask when they are looking to introduce hens to their homes and following the advice above can help ensure you provide them with a suitable home. Please click here for more information about keeping hens at your home as pets and for egg-laying.