Raising Backyard Chickens

A city chicken farmer shares her insights on building chicken coops and tending small flocks in urban settings. After all, who wouldn't want a pet that makes them breakfast?

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Three Eggs on Hay

If you still feel the calling to be an urban chicken farmer like me, you'll have more questions to address and fortunately there are plenty of books, fellow chicken raisers and online forums for a deeper dive. At this point, I must emphasize one of the best benefits of raising a small flock: It's fun. In fact, sometimes it's belly-laughing, stories-you'll-tell-your-grandkids hilarious.


Have you ever seen a chicken run? Funny. Have you ever seen a chicken run around with a huge worm dangling out of its beak that it desperately wants to swallow but the rest of the flock is chasing after it, determined to rip the worm away for their own eating pleasure, which results in the mayhem of chickens chasing chickens around in a crazed zigzag pattern? That's comedy.


If you've ever heard a hen cluck, you know it's a quirky sound. But have you ever witnessed a hen "singing" her egg-laying song and then another joins in and then another? It sounds something like "buk buk buk buh-GAWK, buk buk buk buh-GAWK, buk buk buk buh-GAWK!” I think they are saying, "OMG this is going to/that did hurt." My spouse thinks they're saying, "I'm a super star because I'm going to/I just laid an egg."

In conclusion, we regularly invite friends with kids over to feed, pet and hold our chickens. I love cooking eggs for breakfast that were laid that morning. And I absolutely adore sitting on our back deck sipping lemonade (or a nice Merlot if it's been a long day) and watching our girls do their thing. (Oh, and naming them was fun, too.) 


Being an urban chicken farmer is something to cluck about.


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