8 Reasons to Keep Chickens on the Backyard Homestead

| 12/23/2015 3:37:00 PM

Tags: chickens, poultry, urban homesteading, raising livestock, New Hampshire, Sarah Plotczyk,


Chickens are often referred to as the gateway animal to farming or homesteading. And, I have to admit, that was true for our path as well. Our journey began on a small community garden plot, expanded to a larger permanent garden space when we bought our first house, and soon enough our curiosity about chickens got the better of us when we added a flock of fifteen laying hens to the homestead.

We now have a regular rotation of chickens for both eggs and meat, and we recently added two dairy goats to the family. There is not one day I regret having chickens, and here is why:

1. Let’s start with the most obvious - backyard chickens lay delicious eggs. There is nothing better than a fresh egg; it does not compare to anything you will buy at the store. The yolk is a vibrant golden yellow, and the taste is rich.

2. If you live in an area where ticks are a problem, as we do, you might want to consider allowing your chickens to free range. They will forage on ticks and other garden pests, reducing the problems you could encounter from these insects.

3. Chicken manure is an excellent way to fertilize your gardens. Just remember to let the manure compost before incorporating it into the soil of your vegetable garden.

mother earth news fair


Oct. 21-22, 2017
Topeka, KS.

More than 150 workshops, great deals from more than 200 exhibitors, off-stage demos, inspirational keynotes, and great food!