Learn All About How to Raise Chickens

Raising Chickens 101

Types of Eggs Chickens Produce

Eggs are not all the same. In fact, they come in many different shapes, colors and sizes depending on the breed of chicken. Larger breeds have bigger eggs than smaller breeds. Batams have the smallest eggs, for sure. The color of an egg can be white, brown, green or even blue. No matter what color…

Egg Freshness Tests & Techniques

The goal is always to collect eggs as soon after they are laid as possible. Occasionally though, you may run into a situation where you are not 100% sure how recently an egg was laid. In this circumstance, it’s a good idea to test the egg for freshness before putting it in your fridge. The…

Candling Eggs During Incubation

Back in the day, people used candles to peer though the eggshell and into the egg. Nowadays, there are specially designed flashlights for this purpose. Regardless of how you illuminate an egg, it’s important to understand this process if you plan to hatch fertilized eggs into chicks. The process of candling involves shining a light…

Types of Chicken Feed

Table Scraps – Food Safety Tips

Chickens can eat almost anything that you serve on your family’s table. By sharing your table scraps, you reduce the amount of waste headed for the landfill and you provide a more nutritious and varied diet for your flock. Feeding your flock table scraps also reduces the amount of store-bought feed they need, which is…

Hanging Feeders – Metal & Plastic

Hanging feeders are great when you have a chicken coop or run that has horizontal support beams. Perhaps it goes without saying, but you can’t easily have a hanging feeder unless you have something to hang it from! One of the primary benefits of having a hanging feeder is that they are easier to keep…

What are Omega-3 Eggs?

Simply put, omega-3 eggs are eggs rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Let us emphasize “rich” in Omega-3. All eggs have Omega-3 of approximately 50mg. Many eggs offered in the store that boast “Omega-3” have about 100mg which is better. But, eggs rich in Omega-3 can have up to six times the amount of omega-3 than…

How Much to Feed Chickens

Food for Egg Layer Chickens

Hens that are responsible for laying eggs require a specific diet to keep them healthy. Food for egg layers is different from chickens raised for meat, and their diet changes as they get older. Feed Type by Weeks of AgeIf you are raising hens to lay eggs, you will want to feed them: 0 to…

Too Much Calcium for Chickens

Oyster Shell or Limestone – Given to Layers as a calcium supplement which they need to form strong egg shells. However, DO NOT GIVE TO CHICKS. Too much calcium in chicks can cause bone development problems and even damage the kidneys.

Food for Meat Birds & Feeders

Cockerels and Pullets that are raised for butchering require specific food for meat birds to keep them healthy and ensure they grow quickly. Their diet is different from chickens raised for laying eggs, and their diet changes as they transition from a chick into a pullet or cockerel. Feeding Meat BirdsIf you are raising meat…

Backyard Chicken Accessories

Box Brooders – Reusable & High Capacity

Box brooders are a commercial version of home brooders. The primary benefit of a box brooder is that it can be re-used many times whereas a home brooder needs to be constructed from scratch with each new arrival of chicks. When stacked, box brooders are called battery brooders and have capacity to brood many chicks…

Chick Feeders

Baby chicks, like human babies, need special feeders designed for their small bodies. It is important to use specially designed baby chick feeders to ensure proper nutrition and sanitation. DIY Chicken Coops offers several types of chick feeders, but all are designed to: Reduce contamination from fecal matter Allow easy cleaning and sanitation Limit spills…

Area Brooders – Pen & Heat Source

Another brooding solution that works well for large numbers of chicks is an area brooder. Area brooders combine a pen to contain chicks with a hanging heat source to keep them warm. The larger the pen and heat source, the more chicks your area brooder can take care of. Area brooders have the following features:…

Chicken Breeds

Ornamental Breeds – Not your Typical Chickens

If you are interested in keeping birds to exhibit at shows or simply to add a little flare to your backyard, you probably want an ornamental breed. Keep in mind though, that ornamental birds produce few eggs and most are inefficient meat producers, so it really is all about their looks. Ornamental breeds are commonly…

Bantams – Ornamental Chicken Breed

If you are not interested in having large eggs, and you are not interested in butchering for commercial meat, and you are primarily looking for a pet, a Bantam breed may be your best bet. Bantam breeds are miniature chickens, and they are a lot of fun to raise as pets. They typically don’t get…

Dual Purpose Chicken Breeds

Probably the most common type of breed to have in a backyard is a dual purpose breed that can be raised for both egg production as well as meat production. While these breeds do not produce as many eggs as the egg-layers nor as much meat as the meat birds, they do offer a nice…

How to Raise Meat Birds

Humane Techniques for Chickens

If you are not interested in learning how to kill a chicken, please consider visiting other areas of our website, this page focuses on humane techniques. In this section, we focus on humane techniques to end a chicken’s life quickly and in a manor that will facilitate the remainder of the butchering process. Your goals…

Picking / Plucking Feathers

Once a chicken is killed, the next step in the meat bird process is to remove all of the feathers. Many people refer to this process as “plucking” the feathers. More seasoned poultry folk call this process “picking”. The first important thing to know is that you do not want to delay the picking process.…

Storing Chicken Meat Safely

Freshly butchered chicken meat will keep for up to 5 days in a refrigerator so long as the temperature is maintained at 34° F or lower. To keep chicken longer, you must freeze it no longer than 3 days after butchering. Keep your freezer below 0° F and do not store frozen chicken for longer…

How to Build a Chicken Coop

What You Need to Build a Coop

If you are thinking about building your own coop, there are a few things you will need to buy. Obviously every coop project is different from the next, but there are some basics that you should think about as you do your planning and budgeting. Since this is a DIY venture, there are tools that…

Knotty Pine Chicken Coop

It’s called the knotty pine chicken coop and we’ve spent a good amount of time designing a chicken coop that holds just a few chickens and is an easy addition to your back yard. The knotty pine coop is made in the USA. It is a flat-pack design and will come to your door via…

How to Build a Home Brooder

A home brooder is the least expensive way to take care of a few chicks. To build a home brooder: Take a cardboard box and cut off the top so that it has four sides and a bottom Line the box with chick litter, or even paper towels Put a chick feeder inside the box…

Chicken Health

Coccidiosis in Damp Humid Conditions

Coccidiosis can be avoided by providing a dry sanitary environment for chicks, feeding them medicated starter, and inoculation. At risk: Chicks Can effect mature chickens, but is much less likely as birds mature Symptoms: Loose, watery and/or bloody droppings Lack of energy Reduction in egg production Death Cause: Exposure to coccidia, which is found in…

Microflora in the Digestive Tract

Many problems with the digestion system are a result of beneficial microflora being out of balance. When that happens, the digestive tract can be overrun with many foreign organisms and cause diarrhea which leads to dehydration and malnutrition. When a chick is born in nature, its digestive tract is sterile. So, chicks actually get this…

Abnormal Chicken Droppings

Before we can diagnose “abnormal” chicken droppings, we need to know what normal droppings are! Normal droppings are dark brown, mostly solid (not runny), and often covered in white “powder” which is uric acid from the urinary system (since chickens don’t urinate). Do not confuse normal droppings with ceca droppings. Ceca droppings are mustard to…