We’ve been keeping chickens for 3 years now.
Presently we have six of them. They are easy pets and very rewarding. Each day, in return for food, water and shelter they give us this:
Misconceptions abound about keeping poultry. Contrary to what most think, they are not smelly. And they are not messy. It helps that John regularly turns the soil in the coop area. They also get a weekly addition of yard clippings from several yards tossed in.
We have put effort into keeping their area cute. When we needed to build a bigger coop this year, we made sure that it was attractive.
This was built from a playhouse kit. I painted it to match our house. Their area is fenced in by a picket fence on two sides. The other two sides are 4 ft wire fencing. I clip wings regularly to keep the birds in their bounds but they do like to escape now and then. Two of them have taken a fancy to roosting in my neighbor’s bushes at night. John just nabs them after dark and tosses them in the coop. I leave them out and nothing foul has happened yet. Having a dog in the yard is even more encouragement for them to stay within their fence.
In our town and neighboring towns, restrictions about keeping birds have become stringent. There is fear that keeping poultry brings down property value and leads to neighborhood decline. While listening to my chickens softly cluck and watching their amusing antics, I can’t imagine how this could be. Mine are a positive addition to my yard and their (delicious! organic! free-range!) eggs a welcome addition to my kitchen.