So you want to start keeping chickens of you own? There are countless reasons as to why one would like to keep and potentially breed their own chickens. These can range from simply having your own fresh eggs and chicken meat, to just keeping them as a pet. For whatever reason one chooses to keep chickens there are a few basic things that one will need to know.
First, one will want to be sure that they have a secure and safe home for the chickens to live in. There are lots of options as to what sort of chicken coop one might choose. Frequently, those who raise chickens build their own chicken coops as they are affordable and simple to assemble.
Supplies for building ones chicken coop can easily be obtained from a home improvement store or a farming supply store. There will need to be some sort or barrier on the floor, like wood shavings, which will need to be cleaned out several times a year.
A plastic tarp or clear plastic covering can be used in the colder months to keep in the warmth of the chicken coop. This plastic covering can simply be draped over the chicken coop itself.
Next, one will need to have nesting boxes inside of the chicken coop. These nesting boxes can have fake eggs placed in them so the chickens will understand that this is where they will need to lay their eggs. In addition to the nesting boxes ones chicken coop will also need to have a roost for the chickens.
One of the most important things for one to know when starting out with chickens is the various types of food that they will need. Most chickens will consume mostly scratch, food scraps and extra grit to aid with digestion.
If one is starting out with chicks then they will need a special type of food known as protein enhanced chick starter food. This food will be given to the chicks for up to sixteen weeks of age.
At this point you may want to switch to something a little less hearty. In addition to the food one chooses to feed their chickens, the chickens will also need a continuous source of fresh water.
In summary then, chickens will need to have a clean source of food and water, and shelter. Once these basic needs are met then they will essentially raise themselves. Raising chickens can be an exciting hobby that almost anyone can master.