Raising backyard chickens is such a fun process, especially for the kiddos. There is no better way to show your children how to be responsible pet owners than starting with chickens, not to mention getting them started on the road to 4H.
We have gathered some useful information on raising chickens both in urban and rural settings. However, before you decide to start raising your backyard chickens, be sure to check with the local chicken laws and ordinances. Urban areas will have much stricter regulations regarding livestock than rural areas and there may be fees involved.
Benefits to raising backyard chickens
- Easy and inexpensive to maintain
- Nutritious, fresh eggs
- Weed control that is chemical-free
- Natural fertilizer and compost with high levels of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium
- A safer and healthier alternative to factory farmed products, where you know what went into the meat and eggs
Raising chickens in an urban or suburban neighborhood is becoming a popular trend. Check out these tips on raising chickens in the city.
Here are a few tips on how to raise chickens:
- If you are in the city, let the chickens out a few days a week for at least half an hour before dark.
- Plan for plenty of ventilation on several sides of the hen house. Circulating air will prevent many diseases and help the inside dry out.
- A general rule of thumb for the coop is 4 square feet of space per bird, and 8 square feet of space per bird for a chicken run.
- Pine shavings & corn cob bedding is best. Stay clear of newspaper as it does not absorb well and is slippery underfoot.
- Play with your chicks when young so they can get used to being around people.
Find out more info at Backyard Chickens.
Ready to build your chicken coop? Check out this checklist:
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