FAQ Raising Chickens in your own Backyard

The article FAQ Raising Chickens below gives those who are starting off keeping backyard chickens, or homestead chickens and are wanting to know the basics in raising chickens some comprehensive questions to answers you may have had.

By Adrian Higgins
Washington Post

Q. Do hens need a rooster to lay eggs?

A. No.

Q. How often do chickens lay?

A. A well-fed hen usually lays one egg per day.

Q. Do chickens lay year-round?

A. Typically, no. Egg production falls off as winter approaches and resumes in the spring.

Q. Are chickens noisy?

A. Only when alarmed or laying an egg.

Q. How long do chickens live?

A. About seven years.

Q. Do chickens lay eggs their whole life?

A. They are most productive when they are 2 and 3 years old, and then laying declines markedly.

Q. Where do you get chickens, and how much do they cost?

A. They are available from Amish and other rural farmers markets as well as from breeders advertising on the Web. Laying breeds such as Rhode Island Reds or Sex-links, as opposed to fancy breeds, typically cost between $5 and $15 each. Buy chicks that are old enough that their sex is apparent so that you don't unwittingly purchase a rooster.

Q. Are chickens good for the garden?

A. Yes and no. They will scratch garden beds, dislodge plants and eat seedlings. But they will devour bugs and slugs, and their manure and bedding make great ingredients for the compost pile.

Q. How do you protect chickens from predators?

A. Both the hen house and run should be fenced with chicken wire and covered with netting or wire to prevent hawk attacks. Raccoons and foxes will dig to get into coops, so you will need to bury the fence at least 12 inches.

Q. Do chickens smell?

A. If the coop and run are left uncleaned, yes. Occasional removal of droppings and placement of fresh bedding (pine shavings work well) will keep the hen house odor-free.

Mercury News

Did you find this page helpful?

Sharing is a way of saying, "Thanks!"

Follow Us and Keep Up to Date

As your own FAQ on Raising Chickens Here!

We have lots of pages where you can contribute to throughout this homesteading website. We love hearing from our readers, and hope you will be one of those we hear from too. Look around our homesteading website.  If you have your own FAQ on raising chickens of your own, please submit them. All you need to do is type and submit. We will do the rest!

Leave a Comment

Do you have anything that you would like to add after reading this page? We would love to hear your thoughts. If you can add additional information to what has been written here you will be adding value to the website! No need to have any special skills - just type and submit. We will do the rest!

Other Comments

Click below to see comments from other visitors to this page...

Laying chickens becoming Brooders 
My Plymouth Rock & Buff Orpinton 1 year old chickens/hens one by one are becoming brooders and nest constantly day and night. They were egg layers …

culling non layers 
Is there a way to determine which hens are laying & which one are not? I have 46 hens 22 first year layers (april 1,2010), 42 second year layers (may …

eye infections in day old chicks Not rated yet
I have had problems with one day old hatchery chicks with eye infections. *** It is difficult to say what your day old chicks are suffering …

Extending egg laying in winter months Not rated yet
The reason hens slow down egg production in the winter is the days are shorter. By extending their day use a light, bright enough that a newspaper …

Click here to write your own.

Other Chicken Resources you May be Interested in

Go from FAQ Raising Chickens back to Raising Chickens

Go to Feeding Chickens

Go to Aren't Chickens all the Same?

Go to Chicken Pens

Go to Chicken Breeds

Go to Raising Bantam Chickens

Go to Chicken Coop Plans

Go to Chicken House Plans

Go to Backyard Chickens

Go to Butchering Chickens

Go to Caponize Chickens

Go to Coccidiosis in Chickens

Go to Natural Remedies for Sick Chickens

Go to Self-Sufficient Living

Go to Chicken Recipes

Go to Farm Animals

Don't miss out on our latest news and articles. Sign up for our free monthly e-zine!

Free Gardening E-Book
Yes, sign me up to receive my
free e-Book "Growing Vegetables Organically and Successfully" When I sign up to receive the monthly homesteading newsletter. We do not spam you or give your e-mail address to others.

Email Address

First Name (optional)


New! Comments

Do you have something of value to add? Leave me a comment in the box below.

Protected by Copyscape Plagiarism Checker


privacy policy