Keeping chickens as pets
Keeping backyard chickens as pets has become more and more popular in both urban and suburban areas.
There are plenty of benefits when it comes to keeping chickens:
They are relatively easy and inexpensive to maintain (when compared to most other pets)
They produce eggs that are fresh and nutritious
They provide chemical-free bug and weed control
Their droppings are a fabulous fertiliser
They are entertaining and fun
Keeping chickens is educational for children
Our top tips for keeping chickens as pets:
Check with your local council on the rules on keeping chickens in your area (how many, can they be free-range?)
Housing needs to be dry and draft-free, with good ventilation and a place to nest and stay safe from predators
You must feed the right diet for your type and age of chicken. Complete and balanced food can be purchased at most farm supply stores. These commercial feeds are formulated differently for broilers (meat chickens) and layers (hens used for egg laying)
Grains, such as oats and barley, as well as leafy greens and veggies should be fed in moderation and should not make up more than 10 per cent of the diet
Chickens that do not get a balanced diet will be more prone to disease
Chickens will lay about one unfertilised egg a day and this is stimulated by exposure to daylight. Egg laying will occur regardless of the presence of a rooster
Don’t forget that it is important to accept the responsibility associated with owning chickens. With good care and no major health problems, chickens can live as long as eight years!
Ask us for more information or if you have any other questions about keeping chickens as pets.