I became interested in chickens about 8 or 9 years ago and since that time, I have been asked many questions about raising chickens, as they have become a pretty popular backyard pet.
Here is some information you might find helpful if you are considering getting a back yard flock:
1. Chickens crap all over the place. So if you don’t have a dog who will eat it (I did at one point) you will have to keep your birds off your patio or plan on hosing it down once or twice a week if you want to keep it clean.
2. Chickens are low maintenance; easier than cats. Once you get your initial set up, they are pretty easy to keep! Most breeds can take really cold or really hot temperatures. Get a large feeder and waterer and you won’t have to do much except make sure that no raccoons or chicken- hungry creatures can get to them at night.
3. You don’t need a rooster to get eggs. Your hens will lay, on average, 300 eggs per year without the help of anyone- so unless you hate your neighbors or live on a farm, skip the rooster.
4. Homegrown eggs taste fantastically better than store bought eggs. It will be hard for you to make the switch back once you start eating homegrown.
5. Chickens are great for pest control- they eat all kinds of bugs. If you aren’t a fan of creepy crawlies, you will appreciate these birds even more.
6. Chickens make fun pets. They are easy to tame and great for kids. Our birds run to you when you call for them and beg like little dogs for food. They also get sweet names like Midnight Dragon, Eagle Face, and Butterfly Sparkle. Just think of what you could name yours…
Great sources for finding your new chickens and the gear you need to get started are your local feed store and craigslist. An excellent online source is McMurray Hatchery.
Beautiful Photography by Sharon Pfeiffer Photography