Bring a little country feeling into your life with backyard chickens! They're sweet, will help you save, and cut down on waste in all sorts of wonderful ways!
Backyard chickens are a real treat! There are so many reasons to love them, but here are the top 8 reasons that backyard chickens are amazing!
The most obvious benefit of backyard chickens is that they lay eggs! Having your own supply of eggs is convenient and super fun! Having your own chickens is a great cost-effective way to get the highest quality eggs! You're getting the healthiest eggs money can buy - and you're getting them cheap!
Chickens might seem dumb and boring, but these food-obsessed fowl actually make sweet pets! They're social and can become quite tame. Don't be surprised if they start calling you when they see you in the garden! They're probably (definitely) hoping you'll bring them something to eat, but they're happy to see you too. Once they're tame they can be petted and picked up.
Hens are usually pretty docile (depending on the breed) and children can feed and pet them. Roosters can become a bit aggressive, so they need to be treated with caution. Each one is different, but you'll quickly get to know your little flock and figure out who can be petted and who should be left alone.
Many people are uncomfortable with the conditions on chicken farms. Of course, there are great free-range and pasture-fed options that offer the chickens a better life. Unfortunately, those options can be (understandably) expensive. Having your own chickens is a great way to eat eggs with a clear conscience, knowing that the hens are happy and well treated.
You get to choose most of what your chickens eat. That means you know exactly what's going into the eggs you're eating! No more wondering if your eggs are loaded with hormones or laced with antibiotics! Whatever your chickens are eating, that's what's in your eggs!
Forget to use that spinach? Got leftover salad that's past its best? Your chickens will love it! It feels fantastic to be able to turn your kitchen waste into eggs! And remember, chickens are omnivores which means that they can eat almost anything! As long as it's safe and healthy for them of course! Here's a list of chicken-friendly foods. You'll probably be surprised just how broad it is.
Chickens eat most things, but they go wild for a good source of protein! If one finds a bug or a worm, they'll literally chase each other around trying to get hold of it. If they're free-roaming, they'll spot (and devour) pests in your garden. If they're in a coop, simply toss any bugs, snails, and slugs over to them. They'll make sure your pests are caught and eliminated. The best part? You're actually turning garden pests into eggs! Yes, please!
If your chickens are free to roam around your garden, then they'll naturally fertilize as they move around! If they're in a coop, you'll want to clean out their space from time to time. Manure and soiled bedding can be added to your compost heap or simply left in a pile to mature for a while.
Top Tip: It's best not to add fresh chicken manure to your garden. It's pretty potent and it can actually burn your plants. Once it's properly rotted and matured, it won't smell so bad and your plants will love it!
Chickens need a place to live and there are some super fun ideas for chicken coops. Jump onto Pinterest and have a look at some of the sweet ideas people have come up with. You'll find everything from farmhouses to mini castles! There are also some great practical ideas to help with feeding, watering, and egg collection.
Make it as spunky or simple as you like. At the end of the day, your backyard chickens' coop should keep your hens safe from predators and protected from the weather.
Not into DIY? If you don't feel up to building your own coop, that's fine too. There's a great selection available to buy. Can't find your dream coop online? Some coop-builders will custom-make your coop according to your specs (and dreams).
There are so many wonderful breeds to choose from. Decide what's important to you in a backyard chicken and then choose a breed that's a good match. Are you looking for docile chickens that are good with kids? Excellent layers? A good meat chicken? Hardy hens that can survive and fend for themselves? Colorful eggs? Whatever it is, do some research and you're sure to find a great fit!
Looking for more fun ways to save? Save has great ideas to help you live a full life on a budget. Learn all the basics of composting, get creative with mason jars, or try some fun glow-in-the-dark activities.
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