Caring for the poultry on your farm is crucial if the success of your farm relies on the produce that you receive from owning and breeding chickens. Birds are prone to stress, which can make them ill very quickly, and stressed chickens won’t lay eggs, nor will they be particularly active. You’ll find that stressed birds tend to eat and drink little and will spend a lot of time sitting around not doing much. You need to know how to properly care for your chickens at all stages of their lives, from when they’re eggs, all the way up to adulthood.
Before you start keeping chickens, you should check the rules and regulations in your local area to ensure that you are legally allowed to own and breed chickens on your property. Some places won’t allow chickens to be kept, or they might simply have stricter rules for keeping chickens. You may find restrictions meaning you can only keep a certain number of chickens, so you should check how many you can keep.
If you aren’t setting your chickens up on a farm in a chicken coup, you should ensure that you can properly care for your chickens in your garden. This has become popular with homeowners that have larger properties, as it makes them slightly more self-sufficient than the average household, and they can ensure that their chickens and the eggs produced from them are completely free range.
Chickens aren’t cheap to look after. You’re going to need an ideal amount of space to keep your roosters, hens, chicks, and eggs. Each chicken is supposed to have around 10 square feet of outdoor space. You’ll need to buy feed for the chickens you keep, as well as fresh bedding, a coop, and other supplies to keep them healthy, like supplements. Make sure that you pick up the correct type of feed for the chickens you’re keeping, there are two types: pellets, which are fed to regular chickens, and crumbles, which are fed to smaller sized chickens.
Organise your schedule. Chickens take a lot of time to look after, and they wake up much earlier than you’d probably expect. You have to feed them daily, refill and clean out their water containers, clean their coops, collect eggs, and check that your chickens are safe regularly. Chickens are ripe for predators; so it’s essential to check on them often.
Let your neighbours know that you’re getting chickens. It’s only polite to forewarn them that they’ll be experiencing a bit more noise than they’re used to. You could always bribe them with fresh eggs to keep the peace. Of course, if you’re growing and breeding chickens on farm land, you might not have this issue unless you’re a small farm with neighbours.
Remember that you might need to invest in supplements for your chickens. Supplements can help replace the vitamins and minerals that chickens loose when they’re stressed. They’re also great for chicks who are having a little trouble with their start in life.