Do you have plans on raising chickens but do not know how to go about it? Well, here are a few guidelines and suggestions on raising chickens. Explore to learn more.

How To Raise Chickens

Are you planning to raise chickens to enjoy fresh, chemical free eggs and chicken meat? Well, it might sound simple but there are many factors that one must keep in mind before deciding to raise chickens. You will have to read a lot and do enough research in order to raise chickens at home. Raising chickens requires a lot of your time, and some knowledge about the safety of the bird and enough space. Make sure that you think over all these aspects and also check with the local municipality or government body before you start raising chickens at home. Once you have thought about all the possibilities of raising chicken and have decided to go ahead with your plans, you will have to learn about the various breeds of chickens and choose the breed that you would like to raise. This article provides you with certain guidelines on raising chickens that will present you with some knowledge on the endeavour. 

Raising Chickens

  • The first step in raising chickens is to buy chicks of the breed which you would like to raise. Make sure that you buy chicks from a trusted farm that also provides you with the sex certificate of the chicks.
  • If you are planning to raise chicken to get eggs, you will have to confine the chickens at night to a place where you want them to lay eggs; otherwise they will lay their eggs elsewhere making it hard for you to find.
  • Make sure that chicken house is secure and dry with perches for roosting and few boxes as nests. Chickens share their nests and for that reason you can arrange one nest box for every three hens with a foot of perch space for each hen.
  • You can make use of the unused portion of your garden or one corner of the garage as the chicken house. If you have a space about eight feet by twelve feet, it will be sufficient for about a dozen hens. You should however bear in mind that hens require twice the space of their nests outside to preen and scuff the soil catch bugs and worms. Secure the pen with chicken wire to prevent chickens from straying away.
  • Arrange for a light bulb inside the hen house. A light bulb will be helpful especially during the winter season, providing 12 hours of light daily to the hens. The light will also provide some heat during cold winter nights.
  • You can purchase special food and water containers from feed stores which will help in keeping the food and water for your hens clean. You can also hang the water container above the floor at a comfortable drinking height, in order to keep the water clean and reachable.
  • You can also purchase chicken food from feed stores where you will get special food for all age groups. You can buy a pre-mixed all-purpose laying mash for a small flock. Add some scratch feed to the mash or buy whole corn to supplement the diet of the flock.
  • You can also feed your chickens with kitchen leftovers. Fowls will appreciate greens of any kind, fruit peelings, pancakes, bread, cooked meat etc. Remember to provide some grit to the birds to help digest their food. You can either scatter it on their yard or store it in a feeder.
  • If you think that your hen will need a rooster to lay eggs, think again. Hens can start laying eggs even without a rooster between 18-24 weeks and can continue doing so until 4-5 years. However, other factors like the warm surroundings also encourage fowl to lay eggs. Therefore, it is important for you to provide warmth to the birds in the shed you expect them to lay eggs in. It is advisable to place one box for six chickens, since they require boxes to lay their eggs.
  • Once your chickens grow up they won’t require much care and maintenance. However, general cleaning of their coop once a week and providing them with clean food and water is unavoidable. Make sure that you remove the eggs every day from the boxes; otherwise the hens will refuse to leave their nest in the hope of hatching their eggs.
  • Your hens should get used to you being around, this will help you treat them and handle them when they fall sick. You will have to locate a vet in your area who is experienced in treating chickens.

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