When I decided to get chickens, I had no idea what I was getting myself into. I was excited to have fresh eggs and the idea of raising my own animals, but there were so many things that I wish I had known before starting this journey. In this article, I’ll share some of the most important things that I’ve learned about raising chickens, including the joys and challenges.
Death is part of life
One thing that I wish I had known before getting chickens is that death is part of life. Chickens, just like any other animal, can get sick or injured and sometimes they don’t make it. This can be heartbreaking, especially if you’ve become attached to your birds. It’s important to remember that it’s a natural part of the cycle of life, and to be prepared for the possibility of losing a chicken.
Another important thing that I wish I had known is the concept of “chicken math”. This is the idea that whatever number of chickens you plan to get, you should have a coop that can handle at least three times that number. This is because chickens can be addictive – once you start raising them, you may find yourself wanting more. It’s important to have enough space for them to live comfortably and to avoid overcrowding.
Attachment and Misfortune
One of the things that nobody tells you about raising chickens is how attached you can become to them. Each bird has their own unique personality, and you may find yourself getting very fond of certain chickens. This can make it all the more difficult if something bad happens to them, like illness or predation. It’s important to be prepared for the possibility of losing chickens and to have a plan in place to handle it.
If you’re planning to let your chickens free range, it’s important to be aware that you may lose some birds to predators. It’s a sad reality, but it’s something that you have to be prepared for. If you’re not comfortable with the idea of losing chickens, it may be better to keep them in a secure enclosure.
If you’re planning to keep roosters, you’ll need to be prepared to make some tough decisions. Roosters can be aggressive and noisy, and if you have too many of them they may fight with each other. You may need to decide which roosters to keep and which ones to find new homes for.
Another thing that I wish I had known before getting chickens is how important it is to handle them constantly. This will make them more tame and easier to manage. It’s also important to be aware that chickens will poop everywhere and make parts of your yard stinky and muddy. You’ll need to be prepared to clean up after them regularly.
Finally, it’s important to be aware that some chickens will eat their own eggs. This can be a frustrating problem to deal with, but there are ways to prevent it. Providing enough protein, vitamins, and calcium in their diet can help, as can collecting eggs frequently and keeping the nesting boxes clean. If you do have an egg eater, it’s important to address the problem quickly before it becomes a habit.
In conclusion, raising chickens can be a rewarding and enjoyable experience, but it’s important to be aware of the challenges as well. Death, chicken math, attachment and misfortune, free ranging, roosters, handling, and egg eating are all important things to consider before getting chickens. If you’re prepared for these challenges, you’ll be better equipped to handle them and enjoy the many benefits of raising chickens.
Firstly, a bigger coop is crucial when it comes to raising chickens. As mentioned earlier, chicken math is real and it’s easy to get carried away with adding more birds to your flock. A bigger coop will not only provide enough space for your chickens to move around comfortably but also accommodate any future additions to your flock. I learned this lesson the hard way and had to expand my coop after realizing that my chickens needed more space. If you plan on raising chickens, it’s best to invest in a bigger coop right from the start.
Bigger Bags of Everything.
Secondly, buying bigger bags of everything is a great way to save money and time in the long run. Whether it’s feed, grit, or bedding, it’s always a good idea to buy in bulk. It not only saves you from frequent trips to the store but also ensures that you always have enough supplies on hand. This is especially true when it comes to feed. Chickens eat a lot, and it’s more cost-effective to buy a bigger bag of feed than several smaller bags. I made the mistake of buying small bags of feed, and I found myself running to the store frequently. Buying bigger bags of everything is a practical and economical choice for chicken owners.
Raising chickens can be a fun and fulfilling experience, but it’s important to be prepared for the challenges that come with it. A bigger coop and buying bigger bags of everything are two things that I wish I had known before getting chickens. They are simple but essential things that can make a big difference in the long run. By being prepared and informed, you’ll be able to enjoy the many joys of raising chickens without any unnecessary stress.