Creating Backyard Garden Chickens
There are few hobbies as rewarding as keeping some laying hens in the backyard garden. When you bring the chicks home, you’ll need to keep them in a cage with a heat lamp, as they get cold easily. Make sure you put wood shavings, water and baby chick feed in the cage. Change the water, feed and shavings every day. Watch to see if they are too cold or too hot. Hens grow up quickly. By the time they get too big for the cage, they will also be able to tolerate cooler air temperatures. You can move them to a larger cage or straight into their hen house depending on the weather. When keeping hens in the backyard garden, make sure they have a coop where they can sleep and stay warm and dry. The coop will need nesting boxes with straw where they can lay eggs. They will also need a predator protected chicken run outside. The run should be connected to the coop. Change their water regularly and keep them well supplied with feed. Change the dirty straw in the coop weekly too. It can get stinky in there.
If you want part of your backyard garden to remain neat and tidy, then fence it off from the chicken section. Chickens start laying eggs between 16 and 24 weeks old. You’ll be very pleased with how tasty their eggs are compared to store bought eggs. You’ll get the most eggs their first year. Egg production tapers off after the second year. Keeping chickens is also a great way to have an endless supply of their droppings. Adding chicken manure to the compost pile will allow you to take advantage of this natural form of fertilizer in the backyard garden.