Pick Your Chicks
Decide which kind of chicken is right for you. Do you need a breed that is hardy in the winter months? Do you want a breed that is unusual or rare? Is there a specific color of egg you prefer? How important is the rate of egg production to you? These are all important questions to ask yourself when deciding on a breed to raise.
Plan a Coop
Although it is possible to make your own, attempting to build a chicken coop can be a daunting task. You may decide to buy a coop from professional builders rather than struggling with cost, materials, and labor.
You will need…
- Sawdust or hay for your coop
- Water trough (if you live in a colder climate, heated water troughs are helpful)
- Chicken feed
Prepare for the Inevitable
Sexing chickens is not an exact science, you may end up with roosters in your flock. Roosters can be a pain and, depending on your locations, illegal to keep within city limits.
Unfortunately one or more of your chickens will most likely die. No matter how secure your fence or coop seems, natural predators are everywhere and chickens aren’t the most sturdy species.
Your chickens most likely will not lay eggs when or where you expect them to. Depending on the breed, chickens should begin laying after 6 months. Some larger, heavier birds will lay on the later side.