Backyard Chickens (for Beginners)
Your Chicken Questions Answered!
Chickens have always been a great place to start for beginning homesteaders, and with the price of eggs, they’re making even more sense.
If you’ve never kept chickens, it’s hard to know where to start…but I’ve put together a few beginner’s guides to help you out:
Backyard Chickens FAQ covers dozens of questions from beginner to advanced chicken raising. If you don’t see your question answered there, let me know in the comments, and I’ll add it for you.
Once you have chickens, you’ll inevitably have eggs…lots of them. Most chicken keepers end up with more eggs than they can use, at least in the spring and summer months. You can always share them with neighbors, or you can store them to make up for when your ladies aren’t laying as heavily (during molt, or in the winter).
Since I have little ones at home, bringing in a rainbow of colors in the egg basket makes things even more exciting. Here are a few guides that cover which chickens lay which color eggs:
I know y’all are going to ask, the picture above is a “first in, first out” egg tower that my kids affectionately call the “egg ride.” They love putting the eggs on and watching them slide slowly around the little roller coaster went they come off. Fresh farm eggs are stored at room temperature (if not washed), so this is great for keeping a couple of dozen eggs in rotation. Unfortunately, we’re getting more than it can hold right now =)
Our exact one isn’t for sale anymore, but there are some that are similar available on etsy.
My littles take chicken keeping seriously, and they actually put time into training our chickens (like you’d train a dog). My daughter has a rooster that comes when she calls, and others that jump or even “sit.” It’s not all about serious egg production, and sometimes, having a chicken that will nuzzle your leg like a cat is what gets a little girl excited about this lifestyle.
These are some of the friendliest chicken breeds, and they also happen to lay fun egg colors too. (And, specifically relevant here in Vermont, they’re all extremely cold hardy.)
Orpington Chickens (Breed guide coming soon)
Barred Rock Chickens (Breed guide coming soon)
More chicken breed guides are coming soon. If there’s a breed you’re specifically interested in, leave me a note in the comments, and I’ll add it to my list.
(And make sure you’re subscribed, so you don’t miss them.)
If you’re looking for more guides, I’d suggest checking out the chicken-keeping archives on Practical Self Reliance, where you’ll find even more info.
What chicken-keeping questions do you have? What did I miss? Leave me a note in the comments.
(Similar guides are coming soon for keeping ducks, geese, and turkeys…so drop those questions in the comments too, so I make sure I cover them.)
(Comments only, please. Emails tend to get lost in my inbox, and as much as I’d love to get back to each and every one, my screen time is very limited…and things fall through the cracks, and emails get buried in my inbox. If you comment here, they’re all in one place, and it’s much easier to get back to every single one.)
Until Next Time,
Ashley at Practical Self Reliance