Raising poultry at home

Now that you have chose to raise poultry in your backyard you need to know some important points. There are some important issues involved in raising chickens. You absolutely have to bear in mind that chickens are flock animals. Remember that when handling these birds, space problems are a concern. The accompanying points need to be considered prior to taking the plunge.

Reasons People Raise Chickens

1. Compared to family pets chickens are easier and cheaper to raise and maintain.
2. Fun & friendly pets with personality.
3. If you compost, chickens manufacture the worlds best fertilizer.
4. Free Range chicken eggs are great-tasting and fresh than shop bought.
5. Chickens are a green form of pest and weed control.

Chickens--Where to buy

1. In the spring most feed stores carry chicks or pullets.
2. You can purchase from an Internet-based retail merchant. I have had great success with the folks at Mcmurray hatchery. Find them online at Mcmurrayhatchery dot com.

Chicken care-- first 2 months

1. You need to possess a brooder with Pine shavings covering the floor.
2. You need to have a light in the box that keeps a temperature of 100 degrees the first week and then reduce the temperature by 5 to 10 degrees a week there after.
3. Buy a chick waterer and feeder and keep them up off the floor.
4. Socialize your chicks daily so they are utilized to being touched and handled. This is important so you can simply be handled through out their life.

Chicken care- As soon as the chicks have grown feathers

1. Have a chicken coop that gives loads of room for each bird.
2. Within the hutch each chicken needs at least 3 square feet of room.
3. Outside in the run each chicken needs at least 5 square feet of room.
4. Keep loads of food and water available.

You can feed your chickens practically anything that you can eat. We give our chickens all of our table scraps. If you free range your birds they will scratch and eat every bug and weed seed they find. No poisons essential for pest control.

Chickens are a delicacy to predators. Predators can and will strike day or night. You must take remedial measures to protect your poultry from being dispatched. Living in the city you will likely just have to worry about a a couple of them. Hawks are the most common} ones that springs to mind. Hawks hunt from the air and will swoop down and carry a chicken away for a quick meal. Poultry netting or chicken wire is a need to have item covering your run. Nighttime predators are the skunks and foxes. They will take a chicken any time the opportunity presents itself. This is one other reason you will surround your run with chicken wire. Raising you chicken coop off the earth will preclude this from happening.

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