Chicken Coop Designs - What You Need to Know
A troubled economy and the increased inflation of many food products have forced many people to cut down on daily living expenses, and do things their own way. Several have taken up breeding livestock at home, which saves a lot of cost, and produces large quantities of food. Raising chickens for eggs at home is one such activity, which is an easy way to gain profit and help with daily living expenses.
It is not a very difficult activity, although it is important to take good care of your birds. After you have decided that you would like to pursue this activity, your first consideration should be to check the local laws that pertain to breeding for eggs. There are different laws everywhere; some allowing only roosters to be kept, while others allow only hens. Some cities will allow them, if they are going to be raised for eggs. Nonetheless, it is better to check the laws before beginning.
If you are ready to bring your birds home and have eggs, then the hens that are ready to lay are the best choice for you. When choosing your hens always check to see that they are free of disease and healthy. If you are not selecting the chickens on your own, use a reputable chicken supplier. One tip to remember is that larger breeds can produce more of a mess. Do plenty of research on chicken breeds for eggs before deciding on any certain breed. Some of the most popular egg laying chickens are Brahma, Delaware, Plymouth Rock and Dominique.
To decide on the number of birds that are needed, it depends upon why you have made the decision raise chickens. If you are raising your birds for household use, then four hens should be plenty for a medium-sized family. Four hens should produce about twenty-eight eggs per week. Raising chickens is fun, and may easily turn into an army of birds, however it is always better to start with a small number of birds until you get the hang of things.
The proper shelter is very important for your birds. When choosing the coop, consider how many chickens that you are going to have. There are many pre-built, ready to use chicken coops available on the market. However, if you are a little handy, you can build it yourself, as long it is durable and big enough for all of the birds. Chickens are very vulnerable and need to be protected from predators, especially hawks.
The most crucial part of raising chickens is how you feed them. To produce maximum yield, your chickens need to be fed on a regular basis and at certain intervals. Chickens should be fed a variety of food. Most feed stores sell a balanced feed that comes complete with all the necessary vitamins and minerals. They should also be supplemented with oyster shells, which are also available in feed stores. As a treat, vegetables, breads, cereals and greens will satisfy even the pickiest hens. Fresh water should be available at all times, and nest areas should always be kept clean. A place for the chicken to roost, and a nesting box to lay their eggs should also be provided. These should both be located in a place that is protected from the elements. Be careful, raising chickens can become an extremely addictive activity, although it is a good activity in which the whole family can be involved.