Backyard Chickens for Healthy Eggs

In my quest to feed my family healthier food, one of the hardest things to consistently source is healthy protein.  Organic vegetables have been easy to grow in the garden and are fairly easy to purchase throughout the winter.  Grass-fed organic meat, however, is a lot harder.  And when I have found it, it is also a lot more expensive.

As a cheap budget-minded person, I desire a consistently healthy source of protein for our family that is easy and doesn’t cost a fortune.  The best solution that I have found is having a flock of laying hens.  Eggs are a great source of protein and hens are pretty easy to raise.  Plus, you really don’t need a lot of them to have an abundant supply of eggs.

Our chickens are now housed in a stationary building (we have used portable shelters in the past) with the rabbits.

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It is situated near the goat barn…

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 and next to the garden…

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Being adjacent to the garden makes it super easy to get rid of rotten produce, old plants, and weeds. Remember when Greyden and Colter prepared the garden for winter? They were able to toss everything over the fence and to the chickens.  

I love the fact that the chickens and rabbits eat all of our left-overs that have gone bad.  We keep a plate or plastic tub on the counter and all the food gets scraped into it and taken out to the chickens periodically.  It is a lot easier than a compost pile and I love turning wasted food into eggs.

Right now we have over 60 chickens.  It’s too many, but Emery loves his chickens and it’s hard to sell the extras.

How do I know it’s too many chickens?  Because despite eating eggs daily (sausage, egg, & cheese sandwiches, quiche, eggnog), we still have dozens and dozens of eggs in the fridge.

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But that’s ok, we have a lot of friends who are enjoying our excess (and keeping us supplied with egg cartons)!

PJ

 

 

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  • Cheri K

    Do you happen to know about how many laying hens one would have to have in order to produce about a dozen eggs a week?

    • goatmilkstuff

      General rule of thumb is it takes 3 hens to get 2 eggs a day. If you make a
      good breed choice that will improve your # of eggs. They may slow down in winter and speed up in spring. If you provide light in the winter and
      enough protein year round, we haven’t found that they slow down at all unless they are majorly molting. PJ

  • liloleme

    I am looking forward to raising my own chickens this spring. I am going to make this a family project with my grandchildren.

    • goatmilkstuff

      What a great idea! I love having chickens and fresh eggs. 🙂 PJ

  • Heidi

    We LOVE our backyard chickens.

    • goatmilkstuff

      Love it!! PJ