Lewes Forum thread

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chicken lickin

On 11 Mar 2009 at 5:44pm foghorn leghorn wrote:
Anyone keep hens?
On 11 Mar 2009 at 6:00pm FA wrote:
You should speak to "Tooth Fairy"....he's had a few cocks in his time
On 11 Mar 2009 at 6:25pm Smiler wrote:
There's a bloke down my road who's going to get some hens.
You should ask him
On 11 Mar 2009 at 7:00pm Agony Aunt wrote:
FA, Why do you keep having to spit venom at Tooth Fairy? Are you repressed? Do you want to talk about it?
On 11 Mar 2009 at 7:14pm FA wrote:
On 11 Mar 2009 at 7:33pm north carolina girl wrote:
we have hens and chickens. BUT.......we also live in north carolina, so i am unfamiliar with british chooks. :|
On 11 Mar 2009 at 9:12pm Buff Orpington wrote:
buk buk buk buk
buk buk buk
buk buk buk buk buk buk buk
buk buk buk
On 11 Mar 2009 at 9:12pm Smiler wrote:
The bloke down my road hasn't a clue though, he says he's going to build the run himself but I don't think he knows one end of a hammer from the other.
On 11 Mar 2009 at 9:13pm Smiler wrote:
On 11 Mar 2009 at 9:28pm Light Sussex Bantam wrote:
don't listen to that Buff Orpington he's a Kentish breed - I'm a true local - why are you asking foghorn I say, I say, I say why are you asking boy?
On 11 Mar 2009 at 9:30pm Agony Uncle wrote:
North Carolina Girl - you have hens AND chickens? Isn't that somewhat akin to swimming with dolphins and porpoises?
On 11 Mar 2009 at 10:31pm north carolina girl wrote:
LOL........sorry about that! something of a freudian slip, i'm sure. i'm so anxious to be out and gardening, i was thinking of the plant, hens n chicks! shame on me, eh? of course, what i meant to say is we have hens and roosters.
On 11 Mar 2009 at 10:52pm foghorn leghorn wrote:
Not the helpful responses I was after, but that's Lewes folk for you...!
On 11 Mar 2009 at 11:39pm aunt fanny wrote:
Ive got an old chikadee at home and hes lovely dont want to part with him I taught him how to wash up hes great
On 11 Mar 2009 at 11:41pm Agony Uncle wrote:
I say, I say, I say (again) boy - why are you asking? I might I say, I might be able to help boy.
On 12 Mar 2009 at 8:24am foghorn leghorn wrote:
Now quit your hootin an a' hollerin boy.

Agony Uncle and Light Sussex Bantam, would love to ask you some chicken questions...
On 12 Mar 2009 at 8:53am sashimi wrote:
We used to keep 4 chickens in a shed behind our small Edwardian terraced house in Oxford. On advice we chose HySex (hybrid Sussex) hens on the point of lay in September. That meant they laid all through the winter and the following spring and summer. You then have to decide whether to replace them the next autumn when they stop laying or to keep feeding them till the spring. These are battery hens that don't need a lot of room so the small space we gave them inside and out was like Buckingham Palace to them. Chicken food is easy to come by and we supplemented it with kitchen scraps. Four eggs a day most days meant a supply of fresh eggs for us and the neighbours. The children knew where eggs came from unlike their cousins. You need to persuade a neighbour to feed them when you are away. There are lots of practical books on keeping chickens. I'd do it again and I recommend it.
On 12 Mar 2009 at 10:25am FELINE wrote:
I keep hens foghorn leghorn.
On 12 Mar 2009 at 10:58am foghorn leghorn wrote:
Thankyou sashimi.
On 12 Mar 2009 at 11:06am foghorn leghorn wrote:
I reckon I know you smiler!

Hi Feline. Is that in Lewes? Where did you get your birds from?

On 12 Mar 2009 at 11:32am jonnyboy wrote:
Hens can be bought from Middle Farm at Firle. The also stock books on poultry and will advise. If you're after rescue birds try International Animal Rescue Uckfield, E Sussex. 01825 767 688. Foxes will find your chickens so over engineer their house and run. If you're renting your house check your lease, there was a story this week about a couple threatened with eviction for keeping hens. Good luck.
On 12 Mar 2009 at 1:16pm FELINE wrote:
I do live in Lewes and I got my hens from Middle Farm. I have a range of hybrid hens (bred for egg laying) but Middle Farm also has pure-bred hen sales on particular days. If you want a pure breed it may be woth buying a copy of Practical Poultry and looking in their breeders list for Sussex and Kent.
On 12 Mar 2009 at 2:30pm foghorn leghorn wrote:
Thanks Feline. I was probably going to go with Middle Farm but was looking for a few independent recommendations like yours. Do you mean the actual farm or (John?) the chap who makes the coops though?

Haven't contacted Lewes DC about local bylaws, hopefully its ok to keep hens on your own bit of land...
On 12 Mar 2009 at 2:37pm Dave wrote:
What's the smallest box you can keep a chicken in and still get them to lay?
Could I get more than one in a shoebox?
On 12 Mar 2009 at 2:45pm foghorn leghorn wrote:
Cheers jonnyboy. Thought I'd overdone it on the coop so that's good news from you!
On 12 Mar 2009 at 6:23pm FELINE wrote:
The hybrids are kept by John Pile (I think his daughter took over the farm from him)and the farm has the pure breed sales. The hybrids are much better egg layers than the pure breeds and even they vary quite alot in how many they lay. The highest producer is generally regarded to be the brown ISA. We also have a Magpie, a Bluebell and a Hebden Black. John has a good selection - though it may be a bit early in the year for a full range. John also sells several types of housing. We have a Forsham Ark which is brilliant - but they are expensive. Whatever you go for please be aware (as aleady mentioned in a post) that foxes are very keen to get your hens - so talk about security (such as wire mesh on the bottom of the housing - coming out from the sides to prevent foxes digging under) to whoever you buy the housing from. Also, if you are going to let them run out (we do) watch to see if / what time foxes appear (usually dusk) so you know to get them in (corn is irresistible to them) before they put thmselves to roost when it goes dark. I should just check with the Council about keeping them - in case there are any covenents etc on the land that you don't know about. I have to say although they are a tie and sometimes a worry with foxes etc we absolutely love having them - even though they can wreck the garden and be very difficult about going into their housing sometimes! The eggs are unlike any you can buy - but quite honestly now I'd keep them even if they didn't lay!
On 12 Mar 2009 at 11:14pm foghorn leghorn wrote:
Many thanks again Feline. I've made a good strong coop and totally enclosed run and it's all going at the end of our patio (with a changeable layer of woodchip for the poo) so hopefully Mr and Mrs Fox won't be able to get in unless they have a jackhammer and ear defenders. Though they might scare the birds to death, which happens I suppose. Ours are going to be urban hens, as urban as Lewes gets at least.

Breed wise I was looking at Welsummers, Speckledies or Sussex, though of course we'll probably just end up with hybrids for the amount of eggs and healthiness.
I guess you can keep different breeds and/or hybrids together?

One last question - do you keep the feed hoppers in the coop or out - inside I would imagine - and water outside?

Thanks again for your sharing your knowledge.
On 13 Mar 2009 at 9:38am FELINE wrote:
The pure breeds tend to vary much more in their 'personalities' then the hybrids (which tend to be fairly docile - well that's the theory though someone needs to come and tell our Hebden Black!). Some of the bantams in particular are very feisty. However, the crucial issue is that you get them all at the same time as introducing new ones is a nightmare while they sort out the pecking order - and sometimes it doesn't settle down. NEVER introduce just one hen to an established group. I keep the water and food outside (NEVER let the water run out as egg production requires lots of water - I have 2 water dispensers). The food hopper has a lid on it to protect it from the rain (John Pile will show you all this). Though this does depend on the type of housing you have - Forsham Arks have the 'inside' upstairs up a ladder. Finally, I'm a great believer in adding crushed garlic and cider vinegar to their water. It seems to keep the worms at bay. I'll stop now before I bore you rigid - but you'll be the same soon - it is compulsive! I'd quite happily give up my job (which I actually love!) and spend all day with various flocks of hens. Have you seen the millefiori Booted Bantams? absolutely beautiful - and the wonderful Brahmas! Happy Hen Keeping!
On 13 Mar 2009 at 10:35am Yllis wrote:
And there's me thinking this thread is about kittens!
On 13 Mar 2009 at 10:45am foghorn leghorn wrote:
Ha! Feline thank you for the advice, above and beyond...
On 19 Mar 2009 at 9:19am big bird lover wrote:
anyone seen that friut cake down spencers lane . with his er geese i think . lets them wander around in the street, to impress us all, keep em in your garden, numpty, what if they attack someone, you got insurance, i got a train set in my loft, shall i put that in the street every day to impress, toot, toot,

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