Crack Into the World Of Backyard Chickens!
By Tom Seest
At BackyardChickenNews, we help people who want to raise backyard chickens by collating information and news blended with our own personal experiences.
Before you get backyard chickens, there are some things you should know. You need to know what they eat, what their nesting box looks like, and how to take care of them. Backyard chickens don’t lay eggs every day, so you’ll need to feed them at regular intervals. You should feed them a diet with about 17% protein and whole grains. You should also make sure to water them frequently and make sure they have light in the evenings.
Table Of Contents
There are many different breeds of backyard chickens to choose from. Some are bred for meat production, while others are purely for show or for eggs. It’s up to you to decide which is right for your needs. Some breeds are ideal for meat production, such as the Cornish Cross or the Sussex. Other breeds are suited for pets and show, and some are a good choice for both.
The Rhode Island Red is a great all-rounder breed that produces large, brown eggs. Named for the state that was influential in its development, this breed is very friendly and easy to raise. It is also docile and tame, making it an excellent choice for a backyard flock.
The Australorp is one of the most popular breeds of backyard chickens in Australia. They are hardy, lay large eggs, and produce large numbers of eggs. They are also great for year-round egg production, and they have a gentle temperament. In addition to being friendly, Australorps are a great choice for homesteaders who want a hen that will lay eggs year-round.
The Sussex is another breed that’s popular with backyard chicken enthusiasts. This breed has ancient roots and ties to the Roman Empire. It was originally developed as a better table bird, and its hens are outstanding winter layers. They also make great mothers and tend to stay with their chicks longer than most other breeds.
One of the most common questions about raising backyard chickens is the cost. However, there are a few ways to reduce the costs of raising chickens. One of the most common costs is chicken feed. You will need to feed your chickens every day. If you feed your chickens well, you can save money on this expense.
Chickens need food and bedding. You can provide raked leaves or straw bales to your chickens. Some people also feed their chickens with table scraps. These supplies can be obtained for free or at a low cost from local farms. The cost of keeping backyard chickens will depend on your location and whether you are going to have free-range pasture available.
Purchasing day-old chicks is the cheapest way to begin raising backyard chickens. However, if you intend to raise rare breeds, you may want to invest in older chickens. Another option is to hatch your own eggs. However, you should keep in mind that this method may require additional expenses, like a coop.
Eggs are a great source of protein and should be part of your diet. Eggs can also help you achieve a better quality of life and increase your lifespan. Backyard chickens can produce as many as 120 eggs per month. That means you can expect to earn around $50 per month and make a profit of around $20 per month. With consistent use, your chickens should pay for themselves in about two years.
You can get nesting boxes for your backyard chickens from many places. The most common type of box is made of wood. However, wood tends to break down easily and must be treated. Another popular type of box is made from galvanized steel. You can also use plastic, which is lightweight and easy to clean. The material you choose will depend on your climate and will also affect the lifespan of your nesting boxes.
Nesting materials used in chicken coops include wood shavings, straw, shredded paper, and dry grass. Wood shavings are preferred over straw. The boxes also have a lip and roost bar. The coop should be clean and free of debris. Chickens usually need at least 24 hours to lay eggs.
Nesting boxes come in many designs. The Beverly design, for example, is a large one that can be fixed to the coop. It has up to six nests and supports up to 18 chickens. The Savannah design, which comes with an additional stack of three nesting boxes, has fewer nests and is suitable for up to nine chickens.
Other options for nesting boxes include wine barrels, plastic milk crates, and wine barrels. These are easy to find and inexpensive. You can stack them several times. You can also cut the sides to allow the chickens easy access.
Pasty butt is a common condition in young chicks, and it is also a common affliction in chicks shipped from a hatchery. Unlike adult chickens, chicks are not able to regulate their body temperature and are often shipped in over-heated shipping containers. Regardless of the cause, there are a few easy ways to prevent the development of pasty butt in your backyard flock.
First, check your chicks’ vents. Usually, this condition affects young chicks that have been separated from their mother. The baby chicks cannot clean their vents, so it is essential that you check them every day to see if they are suffering from this condition. If the condition becomes worse, it can lead to constipation and may even cause death.
Pasty butt is a serious health issue in chicks and is usually caused by a blocked vent. This causes the poop to stick to the vent, which clogs it. This waste buildup clogs the chick’s digestive system, allowing harmful bacteria to thrive. This can be deadly, so treating the condition immediately is crucial.
Pasty butt can be prevented by rinsing or soaking the chicks in warm water. Ensure that the temperature in the brooder is high enough to prevent pasty butt. Also, give the chicks probiotics to help balance their good-to-bad bacteria ratio.
If you want a flock of backyard chickens, there are many factors to consider. In addition to the size of your backyard, the breed you choose will also depend on what you intend to do with them. If you live in a cold climate, a larger breed may be a better choice. If you want eggs, you might want to consider Rhode Island Red or Barred Rock chickens. These breeds are excellent layers and can lay five or more eggs a week during the spring and summer.
To get an idea of which breed you should choose, you can use a guidebook. This book covers 128 breeds of poultry, with short descriptions and beautiful pictures. The book is a great reference for anyone building a flock or adding to an existing one. It is also helpful if you’re trying to decide which breed to start with.
Choosing a breed of backyard chicken is an important decision for people of all levels. It’s important to consider how much space you’ll have, how many kids you want to raise, and whether you’ll be using your chickens for eggs or meat. Some people choose to keep them for meat, but others raise them for eggs.
The climate in your backyard will also determine which breeds are best suited for your climate. Some breeds do better in cold climates, while others do better in hot, arid climates. The breed origin of a chicken will also determine its suitability for your climate. If you live in a colder climate, you might consider Brahma chickens, which have a small comb and are less prone to frostbite.
Be sure to read our other related stories at BackyardChickenNews to learn more about raising chickens in your backyard.