For those of you who are contemplating keeping hens for the first time here is a list of all the things that you would need and a rough idea of cost for the essentials.
Accommodation, feed and equipment
- Readymade coop suitable for 6 hens - £250
- Plastic Water hopper - £10
- Plastic feed hopper with cover - £12
- Coop mounted grit dish - £3
- Bag of layers pellets - £9
- Bag of poultry corn - £8
- Bag of poultry grit -£2
- Bale of shavings for bedding - £4
- Bale of straw for nest boxes - £4
- Miscellaneous bits and bobs such as coop disinfectant, poultry spice, poultry tonic, wormer, lice powder red mite spray, cod liver oil, Vaseline diatom etc - £50.
The Chickens themselves
- Ex battery hens £1 each (but due to the poor condition of the birds you might want to add special Ex-bat feed to the list above).
- Unsexed growers or hybrid pullets range from £5 to £15 (for growers you will need to add growers pellets to the list above).
- Pure breed - £20 + dependant on quality.
Other things you might need
- A suitably sized run or fox proof electric poultry netting and battery.
- Plastic feed bins to keep their food safe from vermin, plus a scoop.
- Poultry carrier for taking them to shows, vets etc.
- Heat lamps, lighting or heated pads to prevent water freezing in bad weather.
- Automatic pop hole opener.
- Poultry books, magazines and breed society fees.
Hope this helps!