Chicken Tractors

Chicken Tractors Chicken tractors give you some on the benefits of free ranging, without the drawbacks and dangers of full free range chickens. The chicken tractor is, in it’s simplest form, a More »

Why Raise Chickens

Raising Chickens When faced with listening to a 4am crowing alarm clock every morning, many people wonder, why raise chickens? Well, hopefully by the end of this article you’ll be asking yourself, More »

Choosing a Chicken Breed

Choosing a Chicken Breed Chickens come in all shapes, color, sizes … and purposes. Did you know that selecting the type of chicken breed to raise in your backyard depends on what More »

Dual Purpose Chickens

Dual Purpose Chickens Dual Purpose Chickens are the best egg laying hens combined with the best meat chickens. The truth of the matter is that there are plenty of chicken breeds that are good More »

Raising Chicks

 Raising Chicks Chicks are cute little things. They are so cuddly that when you see them in a hatchery or a feed store, there is always that urge to raise chicks. Or, More »

 

Growing Chicken Feed

Grow chicken feed picture

Growing Chicken Feed

Raising laying hens and meat chickens is an amazing activity. A great way to decrease your chicken feed bill and ensure great chicken health is growing chicken feed.
Aside from the cost, growing chicken feed in your own soil is fresher and healthier than anything you can ever buy in a bag. Feeding your chickens with home grown feed makes them stronger and more resistant to illnesses. Growing chicken feed yourself also gives you food security in the real sense of the word because you are not totally dependent on commercial poultry feeds to make them grow and produce eggs.
Admittedly, not everyone has the space to grow their own chicken feed. But before you immediately discount the idea, keep in mind that a lot of backyard chicken keepers practice growing chicken feed for their flocks.
Besides most of the vegetables, legumes and seeds we eat are also eaten by our chickens so it’s not as if you have to grow food exclusive for them alone. If you are not free ranging your flock, a mobile coop is be a good idea so that you can simply plant the feeds in various areas of the garden and get the chickens to them when they are ready to be eaten.

Why Raise Chickens

Raising a Flock of Chickens

Raising Chickens

When faced with listening to a 4am crowing alarm clock every morning, many people wonder, why raise chickens? Well, hopefully by the end of this article you’ll be asking yourself, why not raise chickens? In truth, there are many reasons why raising chickens is beneficial for you and your family, so let me touch on just a few of them.

  1. The first benefit is food production. I don’t know about you, but I love to eat! And what’s better than having fresh nutritious food available in your own backyard?
  2. Besides the many wonderful eggs your family can enjoy, many people choose specific breeds for the nutritious meat they can provide. It’s fairly inexpensive, and you know exactly what did and did NOT go into your chicken, making it safer and healthier for you and your family to enjoy!
  3. Speaking of fresh food in the backyard, did you know that your chickens can actually help you garden? Yep, its true! Chickens are great at preparing your garden bed by eating down the vegetation and fertilizing the soil with their manure. Plus you get the added bonus of healthier, happier chickens and a lower feed cost. Talk about a win-win!
  4. Here’s another win-win, raising chickens instills responsibilty. Whether you tractor, free range, or coop your chickens, they’re going to require some light maintenance. Watering, feeding and collecting eggs are great ways to get your little ones (and the whole family for that matter) involved in caring for livestock, and teaching them work ethic at the same time.
  5. Finally, chickens can make great pets too. Believe it or not, chickens have a personality all their own, and you’ll be surprised how often you’ll catch yourself watching and interacting with these lively creatures. Before you know it, you’ll find yourself smiling when you hear that 4am alarm clock crowing, because it will remind you of the beautiful creatures that await you outside.

Chicken Dust Bathing

Chicken Dust Bathing Picture

Dust Bathing

Chickens have a natural instinct to maintain cleanliness, despite the reputation built by unclean and smelly chicken coops. Dust bathing is part of that cleanliness instinct.

Chickens will find a dry spot of dirt or dig and scratch through the grass to access the dirt. The chicken will then wriggle around in the dust to get rid of parasites.Chicken Dust Bathing

It is an amusing site to watch a chicken roll around and wiggle in the dry dirt, attempting to get dust on every part of their body.

Dust bathing is part of a chicken’s normal routine and is essential for healthy chickens. You must always provide a way for your chickens to dust bathe.

History of the Backyard Chicken

The History of the Backyard Chicken

It’s been a long road for the domestic chicken. What were once colorful jungle fowl foraging in the leaf litter of a tropical forest have become laying hens and broilers bred selectively to produce eggs and meat for a huge global market.

What Do Chickens Need

What Do Chickens Need?

Congratulations! Your decision to raise chickens is commendable. From eggs to chicken meat to the joy of hearing and seeing them crow, peck and scratch, rearing these birds will give you a lot of benefits. Before you pick up your chickens, you must ask yourself, “What do Chickens Need?”. Chicken raising, however, is a huge responsibility. It’s not enough that you buy them and let them roam around the yard. Your chickens have needs that you need to meet if you want them to survive, breed and give you eggs and meat.

Choosing a Chicken Breed

Various Chicken Breeds

Choosing a Chicken Breed

Chickens come in all shapes, color, sizes … and purposes. Did you know that selecting the type of chicken breed to raise in your backyard depends on what you want to get from them? There are basically three groups of chickens to select from according to purpose: laying hens, meat chickens and dual purpose chickens.

Each of these groups of chickens is bred according to a specific use. It is important before choosing a chicken breed to determine what kind of product you want to get from your chickens and raise the variety that can best give you what you need.

A working knowledge about chicken breeds is going to be very helpful in for the beginner. A visit to a chicken raiser in your area to ask him about the different breeds as well as their specific characteristics will really pay off. Most of those who are raising chickens will be very happy to help beginners start raising chickens. If there is no one raising chickens in your area, there is a lot of information which you can get from your local library or the Internet. In fact, if you read through this article you are going to get useful information about choosing a chicken breed.

Do I Need a Rooster?

Rooster Picture

Do I Need a Rooster?

So here’s the deal: You want to start your own backyard flock so you can have fresh eggs and meat on the table whenever you want to. And why shouldn’t you start your own flock when you have the space for it? Modern chicken data tells us that laying hens can produce an average of 200 eggs per year. Some breeds of chicken for eggssuch as theLeghorn chicken can produce a whopping 300 eggs per chicken!

Best Laying Hens for Your Backyard Flock

Best Laying Hens for Your Backyard Flock

If you’re still a new or future chicken keeper, you’d probably be surprised to know that there are as many different types of chicken breeds as there are different colors of feathers. Basically, there are three kinds of chickens that backyard poultry raisers will want to check out:

There are the best laying hens, the best meat chickens, and dual purpose chickens that excel at both eggs and meat.

For this article, let’s focus on the best laying hens. Imagine being able to just stroll around your backyard and pick up fresh eggs to cook for breakfast. Now that would be the life!

There are many different chicken breeds which you can keep as laying hens. Choosing the best laying hens can sometimes be overwhelming to novice chicken keepers since you are most likely not very familiar with the common chicken breeds that are considered prolific laying hens. So, before you decide to take home the chickens to start raising chickens, here is some information about the best laying hens to help you get started. You will also find benefits and other basic information about each chicken breed.

Here are some of the best laying hens to raise in your backyard, ranked in terms of their productivity as egg producers: