Thursday, 21 January 2010

Keeping Chickens - Chicken Facts You May Not Know

Roosters and Hens - You don't need a rooster to have eggs. Hens lay eggs if they have a rooster friend or if they don't have a rooster. If you are thinking about getting some backyard chickens but worried about the rooster crowing at 4 am, then getting hens only is the way to go. Hen's do not crow but they do make some cackling type noises sometimes.

Egg Laying - Younger hens will lay eggs every day for 2-3 days in a row and then take a day off. Hens start laying around 5 months of age. Hens laying will begin to slack off as the days grown shorter. In winter there are fewer hours of daylight so hens will lay less. If you want hens to lay more in the winter then make sure they have a light on in their coop 12 hours a day. Hens will continue to lay for about 5 years but they will never lay as good as they did their first year.

Hen Pecked - Chickens really do have a pecking order. There will always be a chicken the flock picks on the most and can be down right mean to.

Handling Chickens - The best time to catch chickens is at night when they are sleeping. They really don't move much so you won't have to chase them around.

Chicken Friends - If you decide to let your chickens roam around free there are a few things you should be aware of. Chickens are highly entertaining. They are fun to watch and they like to watch what you are doing. Chickens love eating bugs! Chickens will get into pots and planter boxes. I stop them by place large rocks in the planters, they don't like the rocks in the way so they stopped hopping up. Free range chickens will often decide to sit on the porch and wait for you to come out to feed them. Chickens sitting on the porch = chickens pooping on the porch.

We're Out Numbered - There are more chickens in the world than there are people! China has over three billion chickens! its a rare occurrence but chickens can live as long as 20 years!

Chicken Egg Facts - Chickens lay eggs in shades of green, blue, brown and white. Different breeds lay different egg colors. The biggest chicken egg ever laid was 12 ounces! Chickens often lay double yolk eggs. These eggs are typically longer than regular eggs. Double yolk eggs are more common in younger chickens.

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