Saturday, 16 January 2010

What to Consider Before Keeping Chickens at Home

For a very long time, man has been keeping chickens at home for various reasons. Chickens are an outstanding delicacy in many communities across the continents. In spite of this fact, others keep chicken for different reasons like eggs, as pets among other reasons.

Depending on whatever reason you want to keep chicken, there are several factors to look into before venturing into chicken keeping. Although many people believe that keeping chickens simply means keeping them in a coop at night and letting them out at dawn, this is not the case since chicken need attention too. Among the most significant aspects to consider the following should be included:

Is there enough room for the chicken?
Even though they do not need much space, it is necessary to make sure you provide the little space they require. If the birds are to stay in a coop permanently with no space to roam around in your yard, then your coop should be able to give each bird about 10 square feet per hen. In cases where the birds have a free roaming area, which is the most preferred system, then your coop can allow about 2 to 4 square feet per bird.

How much time are you willing to dedicate to the birds on a daily basis?
This is an important aspect to consider bearing in mind that you may need at least a minimum of 20 minutes per day depending on the quantity of birds in your care. This time will help you in running simple daily errands like cleaning the birds' coop and giving them new feeds and water not forgetting the sweetest part of it all; collecting eggs if any.

Are you comfortable around chicken?
This question may seam so simple yet in reality the answer to these question may greatly determine your success rate at keeping chickens at home. Chickens get messy and it is important to consider this fact before getting into this exercise. If you cannot tolerate chicken droppings or the sound of a cock crowing repeatedly at dawn, then it is advisable to stay away from keeping chicken other wise you will end up leading a miserable life due to the eminent frustration that will result from having to tolerate the above mentioned factors among others.

What is the local authorities take on keeping chickens?
Depending on your residential location, it is very important to find out whether the local authority permits the keeping of chickens at individuals' backyard. You cannot afford to overlook this factor because some local authorities especially in urban centers do not allow backyard chicken rearing. Verifying this fact will help you in avoiding any conflict with the neighborhoods bylaws.

What do your neighbors think?
This factor may affect your chicken rearing venture especially if you are residing in a metropolitan neighborhood. If a simple fence separates your properties, then the activities in your garden may easily affect your neighbors. To be on the safe side, it is advisable to approach them upfront and try to gauge their opinion on your plan. If they don't mind, then you are very safe since you may even bank on their support at times. They may even assist you when you are away besides buying eggs and poultry meat from you.

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