So you want to have chickens but only have a small space. What to do? Well first, check with your local ordinance to see if you can have poultry on your property. Chickens are noisy, don’t think you can get away with just having them hidden in your backyard. My hens are by far louder than the roosters we have had over the years.
They also fly, despite what a lot of people think. They are birds and they do fly. Then also tear up flower beds and other areas with scratching and their hot poop. Chicken poop is too hot for worms, so keep that in mind. It will get stuck on surfaces and be very hard to remove. Chickens poop and pee in the same glob, that’s the white you see on chicken poop, it’s urine.
You will need a place for chickens to roost at night and for them to lay eggs. I suggest a chicken tractor for the small scale, I am linking to a little one for a really small backyard. You can also find them at some outdoor stores locally. You can make a roost out of a small tree limb, they don’t need a ton of room to roost. Some chicken tractors will allow you to move them all over your yard but still within a screened in area to keep them safe. Neighborhood dogs will be your biggest threat. I know, your dog is the sweetest pookey ever in the world but just wait until the dog’s instincts come rushing back at the sight of flappy chickens. Some dogs are fine but most will tear into a live chicken in a split second. Safety is your number one issue when finding a proper coop.
You should get the Chickens for Dummies book. I am sure your Granny had chickens or your friend Betty has chickens so you know everything you need to know about getting those cute little chicks at Tractor Supply in the spring. Trust me, you will need a book to refer to when you go out one day and your chicken seems to be puking but google is telling you chickens don’t puke. That brings to mind that you will want to have some VetRx on hand at all times. This is a cure all, let’s throw this at them and see what happens. 9 times out of 10, VetRx will fix whatever is going on with your flock. When in doubt, VetRx.
Antibiotics are important to keep on hand. A lot of chickens die of respiratory issues for lack of medication. I know, I know…no GMO and no antibiotics! That’s what we are all told lately but the truth is, you do need some on hand just in case. I have saved 4 chickens with the powder antibiotics we keep on hand. You mix it in the water and treat the flock since disease can take your flock out over night. You will also do well with having powder electrolyte on hand to mix in water too, sometimes they become dehydrated.
Chickens can eat just about anything. Yes, they eat chicken too. Don’t give them citrus, I think this has more to do with egg production, or anything that can get caught in their throats. Also, keep standing water to a minimum because they aren’t super smart birds and drown easily.
Sit back and enjoy your egg supply and your chickens. Use proper hand washing techniques after handling a chicken or eggs because of Salmonella.