Posted in About

All About Chickens

My family and I own five chickens (Henrietta, Coop, Nutmeg, Ginger Snap, and Queen Feather). I know owning chickens is becoming more popular and I decided to share some information about them. We’ve owned chickens for about a year and a half, so we are definitely eggsperts (I know it was an awful pun but I had to do it).

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Our chickens were so tiny when I took this picture! Their combs (the red part) are so much bigger now.

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We got our chickens in October 2015 and they’ve been laying consistently since about December 2015. We got them at 16 weeks old.

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I like our eggs way better than store-bought eggs. I can’t go back to white eggs. They look so fake to me. Yes, some chickens lay white eggs but not to the degree of the store-bought kind. I love that we get speckled, spotted, variety colored eggs. Two of our chickens lay light beige eggs and the other three lay darker ones. The eggs are also different because they are a tad harder to crack.

{Safety First}

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*The chickens in their run during winter*

  • Make sure your chickens have a safe coop. We have woods in our backyard in which foxes live. We also have snakes and hawks that fly overhead. Our chickens are not free-ranging so they are a lot less likely to get eaten, but we still have to be careful to keep them safe.

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  • My dad made our coop. In their run (the outside part), he buried wire three feet down and bent it inward so critters can’t dig their way into the coop. We also have wiring on top so hawks can’t swoop in.
  • Make sure you and your family stay safe while having chickens. Make sure to not eat raw eggs or to rub your faces all over chickens or chicks to avoid salmonella.

{Don’t be Afraid of Dirt}

  • Dirt is good for chickens. It is how they keep themselves clean. You will see them digging holes in the ground and settling themselves in these holes. This is called dust bathing and is perfectly normal.

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  • The chickens will be healthier and so will their eggs by eating grubs (worms and other bugs in the ground). Let them eat it up!
  • You can use chickens poop for compost or to make your garden more fertile. We don’t do this but I know plenty people do.

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  • Yes, the eggs do get poop on them, but you can wash that off. Besides, you aren’t eating the shell silly 😉 . With that being said, DON’T wash your eggs until right before you use them. Eggs have a special coating on them that keeps the poop and other stuff from soaking into their pores. When you wash them, you remove this coating.

{Will they ever lay?}

  • Chickens start laying at about 20-24 weeks. Ours started laying at 21 weeks.

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  • During the winter your chickens need to experience at least 12+ hours of light and also need to be comfortable (so not freezing temperatures). If not, they will stop laying. We did this by putting a light (on a timer) inside of their coop. This way, they were a bit warmer and it was lighter for many more hours.

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  • You also may experience a chicken going broody. Basically, this is when the chicken decides it wants to hatch chicks and tries to hatch your eggs. We noticed this with one of our chickens about 8-9 months after we got her. She spent all her time sitting on the eggs and the other eggs the chickens had laid. She wouldn’t lay her own eggs. Nothing we tried would get her to stop, eventually they work themselves out of it and go back to normal. Sorry,  I don’t have any real suggestions on how to cure this.

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I think I just dumped on you a ton of information. If you want to know even more in-depth about chickens, check out Souly Rest. It is a unique blog and there are some posts that go into more detail about chickens on there.

Do you have chickens or want chickens?

Have a magnificent day!

-Rebekah

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7 thoughts on “All About Chickens

  1. This was neat to read, Rebekah, especially so I can see a different perspective on raising chickens! (It’s a bit of a different story when you’re talking about 24,000 chickens, right? 😉 ) Also, I really like your chickens’ names! Hee hee. 😀

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