Food & Drink Magazine

How to Start Raising Chickens in Your Backyard

By Marialiberati

Imagine waking up to fresh eggs every morning from chickens you've raised in your yard. This can be more than a dream. Raising chickens has become popular, and it is a trend you can join. While it is possible to raise chickens in your yard, there are things you must consider before doing so. Here are three vital things to know before you begin to raise chickens.

Know Your Local Laws

First, before looking to purchase a chicken, make sure you can legally keep a chicken in your area. There are several regulations in place that dictate if a person can own chickens, and even if they can, how the chickens can live. Some cities require permits, some ban roosters, and many have specifications about what types of coops you can have and where you can place them in your yard. No two cities are alike when it comes to chicken regulations, so make sure you understand your local laws before purchasing chickens and setting up a coop.

Get the Right Equipment

Once you have figured out your local regulations, you will have to understand the equipment needed to house and raise chickens. You will need a coop to shelter your chickens, nest boxes for eggs, and feeders and water feeders. There are many different kinds of chicken feeders, so you should research to find out which kind is right for your needs. Ensure you have the right equipment for the variety of chicken you've decided to raise.

Know the Birds

While it is excellent to raise chickens, there is a lot to know about these birds. There are more than 400 varieties of chicken, and you will need to understand the exact breed you are raising. Beyond that, you should check that your vet is knowledgeable in treating poultry to ensure your birds are getting the proper medical care. It is also essential to know how these birds can affect your life. Some can live as long as 15 years and are fragile creatures. They need to stay away from most dogs and cats to ensure their health and stability.

Raising chickens can be a rewarding hobby with great benefits besides just fresh eggs. Their droppings can provide fertilizer for your garden, and they can be a part of a local, sustainable food system. Chickens also make great, unique pets. With proper planning, you can have the chicken coop of your dreams.

Like this article? We recommend reading:
Start Raising Chickens Your Backyard
How to Start Raising Chickens in Your Backyard
The Benefits of Composting for Your Backyard Garden.

And what to do with all of those fresh eggs? Plenty of recipes in the Gourmand World Award winning book The Basic Art of Italian Cooking: Holidays and Special Occasions-2nd edition

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