Sorry but I have a few queries as I am new to keeping chickens, wished I’d found this site before we bought them. We have 5 pekins that live in an ark like house with upstairs for sleeping and downstairs being a run. We were told they were about 16-18 weeks old when we got them in August. They are great to have and can’t imagine the garden without them now. They are friendly and like to follow me around the garden and will take corn from the hand. My ageing rabbit gets on fine with them although he does get poked a bit when he’s not paying them enough attention.
When we got them we were told not to leave them out while we were out at work but I don’t know why. At the weekends we leave them out all day and have left them out while we pop to the shops and they are fine.
Has anyone got any opinions on this as I don’t really like them being stuck in the run all day. Our garden is surrounded by 6ft high fence, are likely to get over the fence? are cats a problem? We don’t leave our rabbit out in the garden while we are out as we had one killed by a cat years ago.
They haven’t started laying yet, what age would you usually expect them to start laying?
If we leave the ramp down so they can go upstairs they will disappear up there for the majority of the day. They don’t sit in the nest box or on the roosting perches but just sit round the ramp upstairs. Last weekend we closed the ramp all day so they couldn’t go and hide and they appeared perfectly happy in the garden. Should we close the ramp so they can’t keep going upstairs and provide a nesting box downstairs until they get the idea?
I’m sure there will be a load more questions – just hope I can be of help to others when I become more experienced. Thanks in advance.