If you want to become more self-sufficient, now's the time to start raising chickens. Chickens provide a daily supply of fresh eggs for you and your family. But, you do need to give your chickens the right type of care. Luckily, raising healthy, productive chickens doesn't need to be difficult. If you've never raised chickens before, read the list below. Here are some tips to help you learn how to raise chickens.
Take Care With Food and Water
If you're going to raise chickens, you need to provide them with plenty of food and water. Chicken's dietary needs change as they grow. You should start young chicks on a starter feed right away. That should continue until your chickens lay their first eggs. Once chickens produce eggs, they should start getting layer feed.
Layer feed contains higher levels of calcium, which is what laying chickens need. It's also important that you give your chickens fresh water. Try to avoid using troughs or bottles for watering. Those types of watering devices can develop bacteria. Instead, choose an enclosed watering system for your chickens. Enclosed watering systems use nozzles for water access.
Keep Bedding Clean and Dry
Now that you're going to raise chickens, take care of their bedding. Chickens need clean, dry bedding in their coops. One way to ensure dry bedding is to start with a layer of sand. Sand helps absorb moisture inside the coop. It's also important that you keep food and water outside the coop. That way, the bedding doesn't get wet. You should also change the bedding as soon as it gets wet. That way, you can keep your chickens healthy.
Avoid Offering Daily Treats
If you're like most people, you like to give your animals treats from time to time. But, treats interfere with proper nutrition, especially where chickens are concerned. Chickens should get their nutrients from their daily feed. If they get treats, they might not eat the right amount of feed. Unfortunately, poor nutrition can make your chickens sick. And, it can interfere with egg production. Keep your chickens healthy. Avoid giving them daily treats.
Monitor Their Droppings
If you want to raise healthy chickens, start checking their droppings. You can tell a lot about your chickens by watching their droppings. An easy way to watch their droppings is to install a droppings board. That way, you don't need to dig through the bedding to see the droppings.