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Hello all, I’ve been lurking on this forum for several years & (fingers crossed!) 2019 will be the year we finally add some crooks to our lives! 🙌🏻

We want to get 3-4 bantams (I’m thinking Pekins but definitely open to suggestions!) as we want them mainly as family pets. I have two young children (who will be at least 3 & 1 by the time we get them) and I would love for them to grow up with an understanding of where food comes from. Note, the chickens are really for though 😂

We’re really struggling to decide which Eglu to get - the classic with 3m run (hope to extend to 4m in future) or Go Up? I’ve read SO MANY threads on this forum so I know the general view is that the classic trumps the Go in terms of build quality, but I don’t know if the extra heights with room for perches would be better for the girls?

They will get daily supervised free range time (1-2 hours probably) but will have to spend a lot of time in run as we also have a cockapoo - who I’m hoping will adjust?!

What are your thoughts? Is it realistic to keep 3-4 Bantams in a coop/run if this size? I’d love a cube but we live in a newbuild so haven’t got the biggest garden (it’s 120m sq so not bad for new house, but we have flower beds/kids play area)

I’ve been dreaming of getting chickens for 10+ years so just want to make them a nice home!

Thanks in advance!

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I’ve never had a Go Up but have 2 classics and 2 cubes.  I love the cubes ( mark 1) and have one attached to a WIR.  So I use the classics as spares these days.  I keep bantams.  Bantams prefer to roost high so weren’t very comfortable going to bed ‘downstairs’.  Indeed, they much prefer to perch outside than go inside.  As for how many?  I personally would go for 3 in that size run.  Trouble starts when they feel cramped.  

The dog will need introducing to them whilst on the lead.  My dogs have always been good with them but I still don’t leave them together unsupervised. 

Hope that helps a bit.  Chickens are a good choice for children. 

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I'd go for the Cube mark 1 or the Classic - wouldn't waste my breath on the Cube mark 2 or the Go. That's just my opinion though

My dogs never go out in the garden when the chooks are free ranging and they are trained not to bark at the runs either; chickens are easily frightened.

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11 hours ago, Patricia W said:

I’ve never had a Go Up but have 2 classics and 2 cubes.  I love the cubes ( mark 1) and have one attached to a WIR.  So I use the classics as spares these days.  I keep bantams.  Bantams prefer to roost high so weren’t very comfortable going to bed ‘downstairs’.  Indeed, they much prefer to perch outside than go inside.  As for how many?  I personally would go for 3 in that size run.  Trouble starts when they feel cramped.  

The dog will need introducing to them whilst on the lead.  My dogs have always been good with them but I still don’t leave them together unsupervised. 

Hope that helps a bit.  Chickens are a good choice for children. 

Thank you Patricia W  that’s a great help!

I will need to keep my eyes out for a second hand cube as not sure I can stretch to a new one (sadly!)

Would 3 bantams be ok in a 3m run? I would look to extend to 4m but that’s probably the maximum I could do.

What bantam breeds do you have? I’d like something friendly if possible to make it easier for the children to feed/collect eggs (maybe stroke or cuddle?! Is that too ambitious?)

11 hours ago, The Dogmother said:

I'd go for the Cube mark 1 or the Classic - wouldn't waste my breath on the Cube mark 2 or the Go. That's just my opinion though

My dogs never go out in the garden when the chooks are free ranging and they are trained not to bark at the runs either; chickens are easily frightened.

Thank you Dogmother - very helpful!

What’s the difference between cube mark 1 & 2? I’ve had a look on here but can only really find comparisons of Eglu mark 1/2.

I’m planning to keep the dog inside when chooks are FR but (like you) hope to train her not to bark at the run 🤞🏻

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I have two Cube Mark 1s and a Go Up (originally a Go, but I bought the kit when Omlet brought out the Go Up), and I've also owned a classic.

I love the Cube Mark 1s most of all, and that's what I started with. 

I bought a Classic as I started hatching, and I wanted something for the chicks.   I love the iconic shape of it, but  (for me) it had some serious flaws.  I found it wasted a lot of grass - the area under the Eglu just wasted away, even if I moved it every few days.  I found getting down to clean it was also a bit of a pain,  the CubeM1 is so easy in comparison.   In the end I bought a second cube instead, and sold the Eglu.

My Mark1 Cubes rarely move, we have them connected to a walk in run which my husband built when I first started keeping chickens.   Eventually we removed the wheels because they were seizing up through lack of use.

Then I needed a hospital coop for a poorly chook, so I bought a Go.  This worked well, even the grass underneath lasted better  than under the Classic (because the base is slightly elevated compared to the Classic).  It was flimsier than the Cube, but OK for what we needed.

When the Go Up came out,  I loved the idea of being able to have the Go at a raised height. Much easier for cleaning, emptying poo tray, etc.  I bought the bits to convert my Go to a Go Up.    Now it's mostly used in Up form, but I can use it as it was if I need to.  Its light and easy to move around.  This is both a good thing and a bad thing,

I haven't seen the Cube Mark 2 in the flesh, but they look like bigger versions of the Go to me.

If I were starting again now,  I'd probably still go for the Mark 1 Cubes as my first choice for permanent coops,  and a Go Up for my introductions/hospital/chicks/temporary/moveable coop.

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The mark 2 cube is MUCH smaller, as is the attached run. It is also made of the same plastic as the Go range, so less robust than the originals.

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On 12/11/2018 at 9:34 AM, HappyFeet said:

 the year we finally add some crooks to our lives! 🙌🏻

Not sure you want too many of those though :wink:

I have 6 little Pekins in a cube.

I love it and so do they.

Can't wait to hear about what you get :-D

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I’ve got Polish Bantams and Barbu’duccles.  The Polish Bantams are not necessarily the easiest of breeds.  They have lovely top knots but thin skulls so do need a covered run in winter.  They do lay well though not in the winter.  The  Barbu’duccles are lovely. Very friendly and funny.  But they do have feathery feet so not good in mud.   

Three of these in a 3m run with perches added for variety would be fine.  And do keep an eye out for a Mark 1 cube.  Neither of mine were new.  As Dogmother says they are much better than the Mk 2.  Good luck! 

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I would definitely recommend pekins in your position. They’re the friendliest of all the breeds I’ve had (although each individual will be different).

I started with a Go with 3m run for 4 bantams who were let out into the rest of the garden when my partner or I were home. They lived in there for two years and were fine. Then I bought a third hand Cube mk 1 which I absolutely love and the chooks (I try to keep crooks away from mine 😉) definitely prefer sleeping higher up (in fact I’m half considering getting the kit to raise my Go to a Go Up). The Go definitely isn’t of such durable construction as the Cube but I’m happy with mine which I’ve had for 4 and a half years now.

I actually think 4 pekins in a Go Up with 3m run would be OK because they have the space under the house and you could add perches or sort of ‘shelves’ to create extra space. The Classic may be a tougher house but for the same footprint you’ll have less run space and for 4 pekins the run and certainly not the house will be the limiting factor. 

Having said all that, if you can fit it in and find one at a decent price, I’d go for a Cube every time.

Exciting times - keep us posted!

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41 minutes ago, mullethunter said:

I actually think 4 pekins in a Go Up with 3m run would be OK

I agree with this. I have had 5 bantams in a 1m run with an open topped run attached with no problems. It must come to about the same size as a 3m run. I have two perches in the run and a stump in the open topped run.

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19 hours ago, WitchHazel said:

I have two Cube Mark 1s and a Go Up (originally a Go, but I bought the kit when Omlet brought out the Go Up), and I've also owned a classic.

I love the Cube Mark 1s most of all, and that's what I started with. 

I bought a Classic as I started hatching, and I wanted something for the chicks.   I love the iconic shape of it, but  (for me) it had some serious flaws.  I found it wasted a lot of grass - the area under the Eglu just wasted away, even if I moved it every few days.  I found getting down to clean it was also a bit of a pain,  the CubeM1 is so easy in comparison.   In the end I bought a second cube instead, and sold the Eglu.

My Mark1 Cubes rarely move, we have them connected to a walk in run which my husband built when I first started keeping chickens.   Eventually we removed the wheels because they were seizing up through lack of use.

Then I needed a hospital coop for a poorly chook, so I bought a Go.  This worked well, even the grass underneath lasted better  than under the Classic (because the base is slightly elevated compared to the Classic).  It was flimsier than the Cube, but OK for what we needed.

When the Go Up came out,  I loved the idea of being able to have the Go at a raised height. Much easier for cleaning, emptying poo tray, etc.  I bought the bits to convert my Go to a Go Up.    Now it's mostly used in Up form, but I can use it as it was if I need to.  Its light and easy to move around.  This is both a good thing and a bad thing,

I haven't seen the Cube Mark 2 in the flesh, but they look like bigger versions of the Go to me.

If I were starting again now,  I'd probably still go for the Mark 1 Cubes as my first choice for permanent coops,  and a Go Up for my introductions/hospital/chicks/temporary/moveable coop.

Thank you WitchHazel - this is so helpful! I think I’m swayed now on finding a secondhand cube mk1; it’s a slightly bigger footprint but that means the chooks (rather than crooks 😳) will have more space & hopefully be happier. I’ve been out in the garden measuring up & if I change the site of where I was going to put the coop I can accommodate it. It will be slightly nearer to neighbours though...hopefully they won’t change their mind about being happy for us to get them when they arrive 😬😬

14 hours ago, The Dogmother said:

The mark 2 cube is MUCH smaller, as is the attached run. It is also made of the same plastic as the Go range, so less robust than the originals.

Thank you DogMother - I wonder why Omlet decided that was a good idea? Do you know the dimensions of mk1 vs mk2?

11 hours ago, Patricia W said:

I’ve got Polish Bantams and Barbu’duccles.  The Polish Bantams are not necessarily the easiest of breeds.  They have lovely top knots but thin skulls so do need a covered run in winter.  They do lay well though not in the winter.  The  Barbu’duccles are lovely. Very friendly and funny.  But they do have feathery feet so not good in mud.   

Three of these in a 3m run with perches added for variety would be fine.  And do keep an eye out for a Mark 1 cube.  Neither of mine were new.  As Dogmother says they are much better than the Mk 2.  Good luck! 

That’s my only worry about Perkins - the feathery feet...I’m planning to tarp the run, and I gather they need washing if they get muddy 

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Found the dimensions of the new cube..... doubt that there will be any of the mark 1 as they've now discontinued it. Daft if you ask me, but my understanding was that it's to do with production costs. BTW, the new cube run is much less robust as the sections are divided more than the mark 1 run; it will need securing with cable ties rather than the run clips supplied. A friend has a mark 2 cube and I helped him assemble it...  let's just say that neither of us was best impressed.

 

new cube.JPG

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Thank you so much DogMother - will definitely keep a look out for a mk1 (especially as I can’t even afford a new cube! 🙈)

 

 

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9 hours ago, HappyFeet said:

That’s my only worry about Perkins - the feathery feet...I’m planning to tarp the run, and I gather they need washing if they get muddy 

If you have wood chip in the run even if it gets damp it’ll never be muddy. I’ve had pekins for over 4 years and have nevertheless had to wash their feet feathers.

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3 minutes ago, mullethunter said:
9 hours ago, HappyFeet said:

That’s my only worry about Perkins - the feathery feet...I’m planning to tarp the run, and I gather they need washing if they get muddy 

I usually check my girls feet and gently remove any mud balls with my fingers.

They don't mind too much as long as you don't pull too hard.

4 minutes ago, mullethunter said:

If you have wood chip in the run even if it gets damp it’ll never be muddy. I’ve had pekins for over 4 years and have nevertheless had to wash their feet feathers.

Mine do have wood chip in one half of their run so the mud balls aren't as bad as they used to be.

I can thoroughly recommend the wood chips - although expensive to start with, mine have been in my run for almost 2 years and I haven't had to change them yet.

Sorry, somehow I can't delete the first bit of my post that says 3 minutes ago, mullethunter posted.

 

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3 hours ago, HappyFeet said:

Thank you so much DogMother - will definitely keep a look out for a mk1 (especially as I can’t even afford a new cube! 🙈)

Markgm has one for sale that I just spotted.

Don't know if it is still available but I didn't see any replies.

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