Keeping Chickens – Top 10 Tips on Keeping Chickens in Your Backyard

by Keeping Chickens on June 4, 2010

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Raising and keeping chickens in the backyard is an easy, economical way to get fresh eggs and save money. They are fairly inexpensive to maintain and to raise, and you are guaranteed to have eggs that are chemical and hormone free.

Chickens are actually quite friendly animals and provide a great way to teach children about responsibility and how to care for living things. They also provide a source of pride for those who raise them, and give people experience in small animal farming and egg hatching. Some people raise chickens in their backyards to raise money. Eggs can be quite profitable, if there are enough of them produced and plenty of buyers who want fresh, chemical-free eggs to eat and enjoy.

Chickens are more popular to raise than both ducks and geese combined. Free range chickens have plenty of room to run and move around, and tend to produce better than chickens raised in smaller, confined spaces. If you decide to raise chickens in our backyard, be sure there will be plenty of room for them to move around, room for a chicken coop, and of course room for yourself as well.

Here are ten tips for keeping chickens in your backyard:

1.For starter chicks, check with local farms, or other chicken breeders in the locality.
2.Pine shavings work well as flooring for both small and adult chickens.
3.Play and interact with baby chicks to get them used to their surrounding and to other people.
4.When the chickens “feather out”, they should be moved to a coop.
5.Chickens like bread, vegetables, and even bugs as treats.
6.Eggs take about 21 days to hatch, and should be incubated well. Natural incubation works best.
7.Dedicate a large section of the backyard for the chickens to run.
8.Cull, or get rid of, chickens with unwanted traits, as they can cause several serious problems for the others.
9.Be sure to check for local laws in terms of how many chickens can be kept on your property.
10.Protect chickens against predators by providing them with ample shelter.

how_to_build_a_chicken_coop

Keeping chickens is a fun and productive way to produce eggs and enjoy the freedoms of having your very own flock. Feed is fairly inexpensive, and other natural foods can be fed to them as well. Patience is very important since it does take some time for the hens to grow and produce eggs. The first few batches of eggs may not be as big as hoped, but over time their size and girth will increase. Hens need to have a good, warm, and safe environment in which to lay their eggs. If their environment is conducive to production, they can lay a great deal of eggs every week.

Chickens are friendly animals, and make great pets. They’re fun to watch, enjoyable to raise, and an excellent way to have your own fresh eggs almost every single day. Hens can lay eggs up to five years of their lives, sometimes as long as eight years, so just a few chickens will produce eggs for a long time.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Kit January 30, 2010 at 7:11 pm

Hi,
I’m considering getting a couple of hens to keep in my suburban backyard. I have a large fenced area of the garden (aprox8m x 8m) where there is currently a goat residing (to eat unwanted shrubs and weeds). I’m not sure if you will be able to answer my question but, I’m wondering wether they could live together? As there are plenty of weeds and lots of space. Would the chook feed be bad for a goat or vice versa? I wouldn’t think so given they both eat just about anything however I don’t want to harm my current pets. I would imagine the goat would give the chooks a lot of protection also… Any advice or comments would be appreciated.
Thanks Kit

Bronwyn February 6, 2010 at 12:28 pm

Hi- I have just got 4 chickens (2 Aruacanas and 2 Salmon Faverolles) and loving them. Can’t wait to see the rest of your posts.

James September 11, 2010 at 7:08 am

Hi,

Thanks for the info. Can you give an idea of how much space you need?

I’m living on a subdivided residential house with a medium-small backyard and I’m not sure if it’s enough space.

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