A Feel Good Guide to Chicken Coops
You, like many other people are beginning to understand the benefits and advantages of keeping Chickens. No more supermarket eggs days or weeks old from who knows where, you can now enjoy eggs, organic eggs within minutes or hours after being laid. Beautiful orange yolks not dull yellow, what a great way to start your day! .
Research has found that Chickens allowed to roam freely eating grasses and other natural vegetation, produce eggs that are in turn lower in cholesterol and higher in Omega 3 and Vitamin E. So not only do you get these fantastic eggs but also keeping chickens has it’s other benefits too.
Chickens when allowed to roam also feed off those little garden pests (caterpillars, beetles, grubs, earwigs and many other little beasties) they also keep the grass in check, (Care should be taken to ensure the chickens are spread around the garden as Chickens can clear land as well!). All this eating leads to one thing, an amazing fertiliser which when added to the straw and or saw dust from the coop can be composted. This compost is an ecological and effective way to reduce your ecological footprint and produce a fantastic natural product for your garden.
There are two main types of chickens, Bantam which is a small / miniature chicken and a standard breed which is a bigger bird. Bantams are the most common pets, as they require smaller space than their cousins. Bantams generally require 3 square feet living space and 1 square foot of roosting space. Chicken like to roost in the evening and require a perch to do so, all Feel Good coop’s come with an enclosed perch bars. There are 100’s of different breeds of chicken, the main breeds are Cream Legbar, Blue Belle, Brahams, Pekin Buff and White and Rhode Island reds. It is recommended when purchasing chickens, to purchase “Point of Lay“ birds as these are generally 12-16 weeks old, fully vaccinated and ready to lay.
These can be easily sourced locally from a poultry supplier. On average a standard bird will lay 250 to 350 eggs per year in the right conditions. Chickens enjoy a wide array of food including: grasses and vegetation, insects found in the garden, scraps and waste food, seeds and specially produced feeds. It is recommended that a variety of these feeds be used to ensure a healthy and happy bird.
Inside the chicken coop should be lined with a mixture of sawdust and straw. The base of the nesting box should also be lined with sawdust and straw. The used straw, sawdust and waste from the chicken coop can be used to create fantastic compost rich in nutrients. It is important to know your chicken and understand if all is well and your bird is healthy. A chicken should always appear busy with the tail and wing feathers in the same position. It is important to feed and water your birds regularly and it is recommended to do so in the morning rather than the evening. The chicken coop should be cleaned weekly or more frequently dependant on the number of birds you have. The following should be checked on every bird on a regular basis. Check nasal passages and eyes for discharge. Check for infestation of mites on the body and head by moving the feathers.
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