backyard chickens

The Pros and Cons of Owning Backyard Chickens

Chickens can survive very easily on their own. They can find their own food and take care of themselves. Even though chickens don’t need to be taken care of, you still want to give them a good life. If natural homegrown food is important to you, you may want to consider getting some chickens to raise. Chicken raising isn’t for everyone though. Before you jump into chicken raising, let’s go over the pros and cons of owning backyard chickens.

Pros of Backyard Chickens

  1. Better Nutrition: It’s hard to know where your food comes from in today’s world. Chicken is often treated with antibiotics and growth hormones. Chickens in large factories are caged and fed garbage (literally) and all sort of chemicals to keep them growing. Eggs that come from free range chickens have more omega-3 fat, less saturated fat, and less cholesterol. 
  2. Environmental Health: Chicken waste is a great fertilizer. You can use your chicken waste for your garden or lawn. This is another natural way to go instead of fertilizers with chemicals in them. 
  3. Decreased Chance of Salmonella: Factory chickens have a higher risk of salmonella. This could be because they are kept in cages so close together with poor hygiene. Bacteria grows in these kinds of environments. Free range chickens have more space, so the spread of bacteria isn’t as common. You can also give your chickens more attention than a large factory so you can quickly get eggs into the fridge. 
  4. Learn More and Have Fun: Chickens are a lot of fun. Your kids would love helping you to gather eggs and name chickens. You can learn so much by just watching chickens. It’ll teach your family about hard work, animal behavior, and agriculture.
backyard chickens

Image Source: Pixabay

Cons of Backyard Chickens

  1. Cost: It can cost a lot of money to get all the equipment for your chickens. You’ll need fencing, a coop, and feed. This requires money and time. 

  2. Chickens Stink: There is no way around it. Chickens smell bad. If the smell of chickens bothers you, you might want to take a second look at whether or not buying some is a good choice. Maybe you’ll get used to the smell, but the smell definitely won’t get better.

  3. Noise: Chickens and roosters make a lot of noise. They are hardly ever quiet. Roosters can be especially loud. Chickens go about clucking all day, if you value your silence this could be a problem. It might bother your neighbors too.

  4. Daily Maintenance: You have to keep the coop clean everyday. There isn't a day you can forget it. It will probably take around an hour or so everyday to clean most of the poop, give fresh water, and collect eggs.

  5. Slaughtering: If you are raising your chickens for meat, this is a big one. Not everyone can deal with killing chickens especially if you’ve gotten attached to them. It’s a messy and sometimes sad job.

Summing Up

There are so many benefits to raising backyard chickens. You can have free range organic chickens and eggs. There are also many cons. In order to have free range chicken for dinner, you need to kill your chicken. Chickens stink, make noise, and require a lot of attention. If you’re up for the challenge this could be the most rewarding thing you ever do!

Image Source: Pixabay

Denali Gillen

I am a farmer’s wife living a farmer’s life. I love having wide open spaces and plenty of space to raise a family. Making the most out of outdoor spaces is something I never get tired of!

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