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Raise Chickens on a Budget

Raising a flock can cost a large chunk of change if you’re not careful. At the same time, raising chickens can have a huge positive impact on your overall quality of living if you utilize the perks. Chickens can be used for food, for companionship, and as a learning experience. If you’re looking to raise chickens on a budget, there’s a few things you can do to keep your cost to a minimal:

?  Build your own chicken coop. The biggest expense when raising a flock can be caused from your chicken coop. Many chicken coops can be in the hundreds to thousands of dollars depending on the size, location, and features included. Rather than pay for the convenience of a built coop, build one yourself. Purchasing a chicken coop plan is a fraction of the cost, and you can customize to your liking.

?  Purchase supplies locally. When you purchase your food or supplies online you’re paying the marked up cost for convenience in addition to a shipping and handling cost. If you find a deal that’s hard to pass up online, keep in mind that when you purchase online returning the item is difficult. In addition, you will not have the opportunity to inspect the item before purchasing.

?  Raise your own chickens. Adults chickens can cost more money depending on the breed. You also have no say in how the flock was raised or what they were fed before coming to you. By raising your flock from eggs or as chicks you now have the ability to monitor what they consume, how they are treated, and how much you spend to do so.

?  Free range your flock. Over time the purchase of food can drive up the cost of caring for chickens. Rather than keeping your flock strictly on a feed diet, allow your flock to free range as well. Provide your flock with a clean and safe area for them to free range. Your chickens will get much needed vitamins and minerals from eating free range in addition to saving you plenty of money.

?  Make your own food. Save even more money feeding your flock by making your own feed for the flock. By making your own feed you’ll be saving money and you’ll know exactly what your flock will be eating, with no added fillers or preservatives.

?  Keep your flock healthy. If one chicken gets sick you risk your entire flock growing ill, which can then cause you to lose lots of money in vet fees or lost profit. Through proper nutrition and shelter you’ll be providing your flock with the opportunity to have a long and healthy life. If you’re raising your flock for food you’ll want to make sure your flock receives the best nutrition to ensure you receive the best quality food as well.

Following these tips you’ll be able to save hundreds of dollars when raising chickens, as well as provide your flock with a good quality of living.

 
 

How to Raise Chickens – Tips on Raising Chickens

Raising a coop full of chickens can be a fun and educating experience. Chickens can be hatched or bought from local farmers. They can also be ordered through a number of different hatcheries. If you are learning how to raise chickens then it is best to buy already hatched chicks. It is also recommend to only try raising female chickens, hens, the first time you raise chickens. Roosters can be aggressive, territorial and very loud.

Housing - Find the right Chicken Coop

Before bringing the young chicks home a brooder should be set up for them to spend four to five weeks in. A brooder can be made of almost any type of cage or tub. The brooder should be large enough for the chicks to be able to spread out comfortably. Wood shaving should be used to line the floor of the brooder. The bedding should be changed daily to avoid smell and illness.

Once the chicks are old enough to go outside they will need a chicken coop. The coop should be large enough to shelter the chickens from wind and rain. The chickens will also need enough room for them to scratch at the ground and search for bugs. Most hens will begin to lay eggs around six months. Having a chicken coop will make it a lot easier to find those eggs before they spoil.

Food and Water

The chicks will eat food called crumbles at this time. This type of chick food can be bought in either medicated or non-medicated form. Feeding medicated food will help avoid an illness killing off most of the chickens later on. When you feed non-medicated food then you will have to be especially careful about keeping the brooder and the chicken coop clean. Once the chicks reach a few weeks then you can fed them worms or bugs found in the yard or garden. Avoid feeding them green bugs. This could cause loose droppings and may get the chick sick. Full grown chickens can be feed a well balanced chicken feed. They will also scratch in the dirt looking for worms and bugs.

 

Chicks drink a lot of water, and will need to have clean water available to them at all times. Automated water containers are very helpful. These will help keep the water clean, and can be easily removed to be cleaned.

Temperature

You will also need a heating lamp to help maintain the temperature. The behavior of the chicks can help determine the settings used on the heating lamp. If the chicks huddle close together constantly then they are chilly, and the lamp should be moved closer. If they act sluggish, and avoid contact with each other then they may be too warm. As the chicks' feathers grow then the lamp can be raised higher and higher.

The chickens can be placed outside once their adult feathers have come in. Temperatures should not fall below 50 degrees Fahrenheit at night. Otherwise the young chickens may freeze.

Outside Time

When learning how to raise chickens it is important to have fun, and that means for the chicks also. Chickens are very curious creatures, and love to wonder around. Play time outside is a great way to get the chickens use to living outside later on also. Be very careful to keep an eye on the chicks while they are outside. They can get stuck easily, and are very venerable to larger prey animals, like dogs and cats.

 
 

How To Raise Ducks and Ducklings

Ducks are a unique animal to raise as a pet, but raising such a special pet requires extra attention. Make sure you raise your ducks from ducklings, or better yet from eggs, to ensure they will respond well to human contact. By raising your ducklings from a young age you’ll be forming a special bond to your new young pet. What many do not realize is that raising a duck is not the same as raising chickens. Here are a few good guidelines to follow for raising your healthy, happy ducklings.

First, make sure you have enough space to raise several ducklings. Keep in mind these cute little critters will grow double in size, and sometimes even larger. Ducks are a very social creature and should not be raised alone, therefore its best to keep several. Ducks are not always suitable for being raised in a backyard setting as they need plenty of space to grow, shelter, and water to swim in. If you have a pool you need to make sure that your pool is not chlorinated as this is harmful to ducks.

Make sure you can provide a great safe place for your ducks as they have several natural predators. Locking your pet ducks into a safe shelter for the night is the best way to ensure their safety as several of ducks predators prey in the night.

In addition to shelter, water, and safety you need to be sure you can devote enough time in the beginning to raise your ducklings as they do require lots of attention to start. Whether you are raising them from egg, or from young ducklings, a positive human influence is key in raising ducks that are happy to be around humans and not afraid of their company.

When raising from eggs or ducklings make sure that, if you do not have the mother, you have plenty of proper heat and incubator for eggs. Once hatched, young duckling will still require plenty of heat to keep them warm at night, and also for the comfort. Monitor your young ducklings to ensure that their heat source is not making them too hot, or providing enough heat during the colder months.

Do any and all research before adopting your ducklings. It is best to be well informed before leaping into the raising. You want to be sure you do plenty of research on the proper feeding and what quality of food your ducklings will need, as well as what type of feed your older ducks will need once they reach full age. Additionally, do research for the best type of housing, the best water source, and any little piece you can think of before brining your duckling’s home. The most important part of successfully raising healthy and happy ducklings is to be informed by making sure you know all the proper techniques to raising your young ducklings. But in the end, your ducklings will make fantastic pets

 
 
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