Best Chicken Coops of 2020 Reviews

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Best Chicken Coops – More and more people are getting into the idea of owning livestock. 

In particular, many are interested in owning chickens so that they can have a fresh, reliable, and clean source of eggs. 

Despite this interest, those interested (like you!) may not know what kind of coop they should get.

Setting up your small flock of chickens can’t be complete without a coop to protect them and the eggs that they produce. 

Coops don’t have to be large, and you can actually keep chickens in many backyards, pending your local rules!

Owning chickens is a valuable experience for many people, and those who don’t have experience with these pets may be surprised at just how much joy they can bring into your life.

Best Chicken Coops: A Review

To find out more about the best chicken coops to house your friends, we found products perfect for both beginners and experienced chicken owners; you simply need to find out which chicken coop will work best for your particular needs.

Pets Imperial Double Savoy Chicken Coop

The Pets Imperial Double Savoy Chicken Coop is a large coop that is, in many ways, quite fancily fit for a flock of around six to ten birds depending on their size. 

It’s a high-end option that absolutely belong on our list of Best Chicken Coops that has nearly everything that you need to have for a great chicken set up.

The Double Savory from Pets Imperial is a high-end, well-outfitted chicken coop that offers a wide number of things for every chicken owner: two nesting boxes, lots of space, four perches, an openable roof, and more.

The animal-treated tinder should last for years of use, and there is a galvanized droppings tray that can you can remove easily. 

This coop comes disassembled, but it does include the instructions needed to make it into the perfect coop.

Pets Imperial Double Savoy Chicken Coop Good and Bad

Each bird, if you keep six chickens in this coop, will have their own comfortable resting spot at night because the two nesting boxes are divided into six individual compartments; this can make chickens very happy.

Additionally, this large coop has been built to last for a long time. 

It has plastic caps on the feet to prevent rotting, animal-treated timber to ensure the wood doesn’t rot, a high-quality roofing material, and galvanized metal for the tray so that it doesn’t get rusty or wear out easily.

This coop does not include its own run, so you will need to have it built to accompany this coop. 

That said, Pets Imperial does market their run, which you can set up easily in conjunction with this coop for great chicken-raising results.

  • Easy to assemble
  • Elevated, predator-proof design
  • Roof opens for easy cleaning
  • Attractive design
  • Good ventilation
  • No run included
  • Hard to repair yourself

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Petsfit Weatherproof Outdoor Chicken Coop

Next up is a mid-range option, the Petsfit Weatherproof Outdoor Chicken Coop

This coop and nesting box combination offers a good amount of space and quality alongside an appealing, red barn-inspired design.

The Petsfit Weatherproof Outdoor Coop is made from solid, rain-resistant wood that is very durable, so you can expect this to last for a long time. 

It has gaps in the bottom for ventilation and removable floor panels for easy cleaning.

This coop also has nesting boxes on the side with compartments for two hens, and you can remove the eggs by opening the top of it since it is hinged.

This specific coop is big enough for three or four chickens, and you will need to set up a separate outdoor run as one is not attached.

Petsfit Weatherproof Outdoor Chicken Coop Good and The Bad

This is an affordable coop that has a tiny footprint that can hold up to four chickens. 

The architecture of this coop is better than most since it has an appealing exterior design, and you can put it easily into a yard or fenced area where you intend to let your chickens roam around.

One of the big drawbacks of this coop is that you cannot remove the top, which makes it more challenging to clean. 

However, you can remove the bottom so you can simply use a hose to hose it down and then let all of the water go out the bottom.

Also, the nesting boxes, thankfully, have tops that can open so that you can clean the area more easily when needed.

  • Easy to put together
  • Compartmentalized
  • Attractive exterior
  • Lightweight
  • The roof doesn’t open; can add hinges to it
  • Paint wears out over time

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BestPet Chicken Coop

The BestPet Chicken Coop is a great run for chickens that you can set up easily next to an existing henhouse or another nesting area.

The BestPet Chicken Coop Playpen is a large, secure run area that you can easily move around and organize as needed. 

You can use it when chickens need outdoor time and space to run or when you want to bring them indoors from a dangerous storm or other elements.

Pros and Cons of BestPet Chicken Coop

This coop is a very lightweight setup that is easy to use, offers some rain protection with an included tarp, and you can move around to set your chickens up in a new area when necessary. 

The name-of-the-game with this playpen is “ease”.

This playpen cannot be used as a standalone chicken coop but is a great way to turn a henhouse into a complete chicken compound. 

Chickens need indoor space for sleeping and nesting when possible, and they can also use this type of outdoor run space to exercise, get sun, and play in the dirt.

  • Easy to set up
  • Lightweight
  • Can be made portable
  • Can be used inside or outside
  • Needs to be used in conjunction with nesting box or henhouse
  • Small size; you may need more than one

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Best Choice Products Outdoor Wooden Chicken Coop

Next, we will take a closer look at the Best Choice Products Outdoor Wooden Chicken Coop

It is one of the best options for those who are completely new to chickens, and it is, in many ways, all-inclusive.

This 80” chicken coop is made from weather-resistant, animal-treated natural fir wood, so you expect it to be very durable. 

Also, the chicken wire used is galvanized and stands up to the elements.

The setup includes a henhouse as well as a small outdoor exercise area, a nesting box, and a rooftop that you can open and close when needed.

This small coop-and-pen setup is big enough for about three to four birds, so it is especially ideal for those who are just getting started.

Best Choice Chicken Coop

This product is a complete setup, and you can get started with raising your chickens without the need to buy much more than feed and bedding once you have it. 

Many henhouses or coops do not have an attached run, so you have to either let chickens roam your yard or set up your own run before you can use the coop. 

This coop has it all included for you, so you can just focus on your new pets and what they need most from you.

One problem that people had with this particular setup was that the hinged door to the nesting box doesn’t lock, so some smart critters like raccoons will eventually learn how to open it and steal the eggs. 

You can prevent this easily by just adding your own lock or latch mechanism and then using that to get to the eggs when you need to.

  • Beginner-friendly
  • Two nesting spots in a single box
  • Good for two to four hens
  • Easy to assemble
  • Can be painted
  • Need to treat the wood for extra weather resistance
  • Need to add a lock to the nesting box top

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SnapLock Formex Chicken Coop

Finally, the last among our top options is the SnapLock Formex Chicken Coop, which is a high-end coop made to be as easy as possible to set up, clean, and manage. 

But is it worth the extra cost?

This SnapLock Formex Chicken Coop can hold up to four to six large hens or six to 12 bantams depending on what you are raising, and it is made from highly durable Formex plastic. 

This material is resistant to water, chemical, UV, and impact, and is also very easy to clean. 

The coop also has three, 36-inch long roosts as well as four nesting spots with removable dividers.

SnapLock Chicken Coop

The two main things that this coop offers is convenience and comfort. 

For you, it’s convenient because it takes less than fifteen minutes to snap together, and everything from cleaning to gathering eggs will take less time thanks to its smart design. 

For the chickens, it’s comfortable because there are lots of elevated roosting bars, many egg-laying areas, and good ventilation that will keep them happy and healthy.

There is no attached run for this coop, and it’s already expensive on its own. 

Still, you can invest in it, knowing that it will last for a long time, even if you decide to change up the size or location of the run so that you can easily use it through many configurations.

  • Easy to assemble
  • High-durability
  • Hinged roof and nesting box doors
  • Can be locked
  • High-end item
  • No attached run

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Chicken Coop Buyer’s Guide

There are hundreds of different chicken coop options on the market, and there are even more chicken coop designs that you could build yourself if you wanted to go that route.

How can you know which type of coop will be right for your home and family?

Ultimately, you should prioritize four things when you are shopping around for a chicken coop: safety, space, ventilation, and ease of cleaning.

Safety

Make sure that any chicken coop that you choose is set up for safety. 

You want to protect the chickens from outside dangers such as predators, the weather, and disease.

It is best to choose a chicken coop with an elevation or elevating since it will help to deter predators, which usually dig holes to come through the ground into the coop. 

If the coop you choose rests directly on the ground, though, you can deter predators with a layer of stone underneath of the coop.

You also want to be sure that the roof and general construction will keep the chickens safe from the elements. 

Chickens don’t like rain, in particular, so ensuring that the roof will keep water out is very important for the overall happiness of your flock.

Space

You always want to be sure that your coop has enough space for your chickens. 

Depending on the number of chickens that you own or want to own, you will want to be sure that the coop can fit them all without being overcrowded since crowding can cause both social and medical problems.

Generally speaking, you should make sure there are at least three square feet per chicken inside the chicken coop as well as an additional 10 square feet per chicken for the outside run area. 

If chickens don’t have enough space, it will cause a slew of problems.

Another size factor that you want to consider is whether or not the coop has nesting boxes. 

Nesting boxes provide a cool, dark place for your chickens to lay eggs, and you can expect each chicken to lay at least one egg every day, except in winter.

Nesting boxes are extra areas in the coop that aren’t disturbed and are locked lower than any perches so that laying the eggs is easy, and the box remains clean.

If your coop doesn’t include its own nesting boxes in the space, you will need to set these up and have them attached to the coop and run. 

That would mean more setup work for you, though.

Ventilation

Chicken coops need to be airy because, without proper ventilation, they will become smelly houses of health problems and coop problems for your pets and eggs. 

An ideal coop will have a minimum of two points of ventilation, preferably with those points located in or near the roof.

If the ventilation points are right at chicken-height-level, the chickens will be unhappy because they do not enjoy it when drafts ruffle their feathers. 

This is a vital feature, so make sure that you check into the ventilation type and areas that are available in any coop you are considering to buy.

Ease of Cleaning

Nobody will want to say this upfront, but chicken coops are very messy! 

That’s just a fact of owning chickens, and it is something that you will need to accept about this life.

As such, it’s key that you choose a chicken coop that is as easy to clean as possible.

What does this look like? Ideally, any coop that you choose should include the following:

  • An easy way to get inside
  • A removable roof
  • A removable or large door
  • Multiple ways to get into every area
  • Removable nesting boxes and perches

With all of those features, it will be easy to get inside and clean up all the extra feathers, dirt, and droppings. 

You will also be able to hose down the entire coop from time to time if you can remove the nesting boxes and perches.

Otherwise, cleaning will become quite difficult because the layout and size of the coop will restrict you!

Chicken Coop FAQs

1. What Do Chicken Coops Need?

There are a few essential things that every chicken coop needs to have in order to for it to be a successful and practical setup:

  • Nesting boxes for the safe, protected laying of eggs
  • Perches
  • Outside run area (at least 10 square feet per chicken)
  • Inside coop area (at least four square feet per chicken)
  • At least two ventilation holes for airflow
  • Removable roof for easy cleaning
  • Elevated base or stone under the coop to deter predators
  • Feeder and water containers
  • Feed
  • Chicken wire and wood for constructing outdoor run, if applicable

As you can see, there can be quite a lot of things that you need to set up your chicken coop. 

If you buy a coop that includes a run area and nesting boxes, you can save money by not needing to get as many additional items as possible.

2. What Size Coop Do You Need for Six Chickens?

Generally, you should have at least four square feet of inside coop space per chicken and 10 square feet of outdoor run space per chicken. 

For a six-bird flock, you will need to have a coop with at least 24 square feet to prevent any social or medical issues. 

These numbers are a little bit flexible, but you should never have less than three square feet in the coop per chicken.

3. Why Are Chicken Coops Elevated?

Chicken coops are typically elevated to prevent predators, such as foxes, from breaking into the coop by digging underground and coming up through the bottom area. 

Additionally, a raised coop prevents both mice and rats from finding the coop to be an appealing place for nesting.

The elevation also helps to ensure that air flows around the entire coop, which can regulate temperature and create a safer environment. 

Chickens also have the instinct to go up and above ground, especially at night, so an elevated coop encourages them to go inside to roost.

4. How Often Should You Clean Chicken Coop?

Most chicken coop owners clean out their coop every week or every other week, but the exact frequency will depend on your climate, the weather conditions, and how messy your chickens are.

We recommend cleaning your coop every week, and you may want to make sure that you rake out droppings from inside the actual henhouse area every single day to make this job easier.

It is imperative to clean out the coop at least every week because ammonia released from the chicken droppings can actually be very damaging for your little chickens.

Every week, here is what you should try to do:

  • Remove all chicken droppings
  • Clear out old bedding
  • Use a mixture of white vinegar and water to scrub any problem spots
  • Hose off the whole coop, if possible
  • Allow it to air dry before adding new bedding
  • Add new bedding

5. Do Chickens Need Light in Their Coop?

Chickens do not need light in their coop, but some chicken owners choose to add different types of lights for various reasons. 

In areas where there is limited sunlight, you can use lights to simulate daylight and help chickens to continue their egg-laying cycle even when there isn’t enough sun.

Chickens originate from equatorial climates, so they do not usually lay eggs in the winter because they need at least 12 to 14 hours of sunlight a day to be regulated properly. 

Adding lights, however, can also be stressful for hens, so you should do it in limited amounts and with a great deal of caution. 

Preferably, this kind of light would only be used for an hour or two at most to extend the egg-laying season.

Other chicken owners add a simple light on a timer that they only use when they are cleaning their coop, gathering eggs, or feeding their flock. 

Finally, some chicken owners set up a red light in the coop that runs for longer periods because of the perceived benefits, such as being able to see better, helping to prevent pecking, and just generally keep them happier.

Best Chicken Egg Incubators

Best Chicken Coops for Your Backyard

As you can see, there are many great choices when it comes to the best chicken coops. 

Each of the coops we reviewed has a set of unique features and finding the one that fits best for your flock will take some time.

To make your decision easier, remember that you need to focus on the primary things from our buyer’s guide: safety, space, ventilation, and ease of cleaning. Best Wire For Chicken Coops

If you focus on these areas when you are choosing your coop, you will be less likely to regret whichever coop you end up with because it will fit the needs of managing your flock successfully.

The top option, in our eyes, is the Pets Imperial Double Savoy Chicken Coop because of its great size, easy cleaning setup, and high level of durability.

Owning chickens can be rewarding in many ways as long as you take time to choose the right chicken setup. 

Hopefully, we made that process easier for you to find the Best Chicken Coops!

Best Chicken Feeder to Prevent Waste of 2020 Reviews

best chicken feeder to prevent waste

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If you’re thinking about keeping chickens, or maybe you already do keep chickens, it’s important to invest in the best chicken feeder to prevent waste.

Chicken feed isn’t expensive, but it can quickly become a costly investment if it allows for a lot of waste or easy access for other animals.

Pick your chicken feeder from our list below.

This will ensure you’ll get the most out of your investment when it comes to the feeder and the food supply.

Best Chicken Feeder to Prevent Waste Review

RentACoop Chicken Feeder

The first product to make it to our list is this fantastic offering from RentACoop.

With a completely waterproof design and two feeding ports, it has an incredible capacity that will come in really handy for those who want low-maintenance feeding.

The first thing that stands out about this chicken feeder from RentACoop is the extra-large capacity it offers.

It holds an amazing 20 pounds of feed at once, so you only have to refill it once a month for feeding two hens!

We also really like how easy it is to refill since you just pop off the lid, pour in the feed, and replace the lid.

The simple bucket-based design leaves very little that could possibly go wrong with it, meaning it will last you for years to come.

The chicken has to poke it’s head fully into the feeding port to access the food, which means it can save you a lot of feed from being wasted.

Unfortunately, the RentACoop Chicken Feeder isn’t effective with very young chicks because they can crawl inside the feeding port, so they would still be able to create waste by scratching around.

You can place the feeder indoors or outdoors since it’s completely waterproof, protecting the feed from rain.

Nonetheless, the design is great for deterring other birds, squirrels, mice, and rats, so you won’t use more feed than necessary.

The RentACoop Chicken Feeder is also 100% food-grade plastic and comes fully assembled and, therefore, ready to be used straight away.

It’s recommended for four to six hens, but you may wish to purchase more if you have a particularly timid bird in your flock.

RentACoop Chicken Feeder Pros and Cons

The RentACoop Chicken Feeder is very good at preventing waste because the chicken needs to stick its head right inside the feeder to get at the feed.

We also love the large capacity that this feeder offers.

The RentACoop Chicken Feeder can’t prevent waste from very young chicks, and while it does deter other neighborhood vermin, it isn’t wholly pest-proof.

  • Can be hung up or sat on the floor
  • Completely waterproof
  • Extra-large capacity
  • Easy to refill
  • Suitable for indoor or outdoor use
  • Not suitable for chicks under 12 weeks
  • Not completely pest-proof

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Roamwild PestOff Rat Proof Chicken Feeder

The second chicken feeder to make it to our list is the rat-proof device from PestOff.

This is a great choice if you suspect that you’re losing more feed to the local rats than you are to your chickens.

This chicken feeder from PestOff prevents food waste, especially if you are losing feed to local wildlife as it’s completely pest-proof.

The feeder has a pending patent design that features individually spring-loaded feeding ports, allowing only chickens to feed, not pests.

The Roamwild PestOff Rat Proof Chicken Feeder also has a decent capacity of around eight pounds.

With two feeding windows, it is recommended for flocks with around four to six hens.

The feeder comes with a chain and brackets which you can mount, allowing you to suspend the feeder in the air.

The design allows the ports to shut off with the weight of the pest hanging on to the feeder trying to access the food.

As the rat or squirrel holds on to the feeder, the port slides closed under their weight and the food is closed off.

Your chickens, however, being taller, can happily peck away for hours on end!

The Roamwild PestOff Rat Proof Chicken Feeder is weatherproof, so the feed isn’t wasted when it rains, and it doesn’t clog up in the feeding port.

This feeder also comes with a guarantee included that offers your money back, in full, if you’re not 100% satisfied.

What we Like and Dislike About Roamwild PestOff Rat Proof Chicken Feeder

We love the fact that the Roamwild PestOff Rat Proof Chicken Feeder is completely pest-proof, preventing wastage of feeds overnight due to squirrels, mice, and rats.

This feeder must hang off the ground due to its slim, top-heavy design.

The pest-proof feature also won’t work on the ground.

  • 100% pest-proof design
  • Comes with hanging brackets and chain
  • Weatherproof 
  • Suitable for indoor and outdoor use
  • Easy to refill
  • Must be suspended
  • Limited capacity
  • The spring-loaded mechanism needs regular washing to retain function

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RentACoop Outdoor Chicken Feeder

Our third pick is another feeder from RentACoop.

It seems that RentACoop sure has mastered the art of offering chicken feeders with great capacities!

Another chicken feeder from RentACoop but with a really different design for those who prefer metal feeders.

This feeder can’t be hung but needs to be screwed to the outside of your chicken coop walls, or it can sit on a stand.

You can remove the lid easily, and up to 25 pounds of feed can be added at one time.

The RentACoop Outdoor Chicken Feeder is made from metal, making it more durable, although some customers have complained that it has arrived slightly dented.

It is based on an undercover trough design at the bottom with metal bars to keep other wildlife out.

There’s no way that your hens could scratch around in the food, and pests would find it very difficult to reach the food, so waste is massively minimized.

There is also a large roof that extends forward, covering the entire trough area so that rain can’t get in and spoil your feed.

RentACoop Outdoor Chicken Feeder Good and Bad

We love the way this feeder looks, and as the largest capacity feeder on our list, this would be an excellent option for keeping low-maintenance chickens.

It would be pretty annoying if the feeder turned up with dents in it.

RentACoop is happy to accept returns if this happens, though, or you can bash them out yourself with a hammer.

  • Waterproof
  • Good at deterring pests
  • Easily screws to your coop, off the ground
  • Visually pleasing design
  • Extra-large capacity
  • More suitable for outdoor use
  • Needs to be screwed in place
  • Can get dented in transit

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Royal Rooster Chicken Feeder and Waterer Set

The fourth feeder we picked to feature is European-made and has the bonus of being a matching set, with both feeder and waterer.

This chicken feeder from Royal Rooster is great at reducing waste from your chickens, saving you money spent on extra feed.

You can suspend this product off the ground, and you can use brackets to attach it to a wall, which comes with the package.

It can also be hung straight onto a mesh fence, which is really handy since that means it’s ready to be used straight away.

Your hens peck the food from a barred feeding tray that features a rain cover to keep it nice and dry in all weather conditions.

Unfortunately, it has the smallest capacity of all the feeders we featured.

It holds just 6.5 pounds of feed, so if you’re looking for something more low-maintenance, then this isn’t it.

That said, if you are happy to refill the feeder more often than you do, you get the added perk of the matching waterer.

The one-gallon waterer will go a long way in helping ensure a clean supply of water, free from outside contamination.

Both devices are made from durable PVC plastic that is UV stable, so you can use it indoors or outdoors.

They are easy to fill, and one set would suit a small flock of around four to six chicks.

Royal Rooster Chicken Feeder

We love the fact that this comes as a set, so you can keep both your food and water source dry and clean.

We don’t like the fact that the feeder is so small, as you’ll definitely find yourself having to fill it up every few days.

  • Available as a set
  • Durable and easy to use
  • Suitable for outdoor and indoor use
  • Hangs straight to mesh
  • Small capacity; needs refilling often
  • Feeder can’t be purchased on its own

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Happy Henhouse Treadle Feeder

Last but not least, the fifth feeder to make it to our list is the treadle feeder from Happy Henhouse.

This premium feeder is unique to this list because it is the only feeder that is perfect for feeding a mixed flock.

Our last feeder from Happy Henhouse is made from 100% rust-proof aluminum, which makes it an ideal feeder for both indoors and outdoors.

It can be used in any climate and is really durable, meaning it will last you for years to come.

The Happy Henhouse Treadle Feeder holds up to 20 pounds of food, so you don‘t need to refill it very often, and with different feeding trays, it can hold three different types of feed.

It keeps the food enclosed and reduces waste by featuring bars across the feeding trays to stop your chickens from wasting the food.

The feeder opens automatically when your chickens step onto the platform, and its soft close lid won’t hurt your chickens when it closes.

Once your chickens return to roost, the feeder closes so that other local wildlife can’t access the contents.

The Happy Henhouse Treadle Feeder also has a patented design.

Poultry enthusiasts designed it carefully, and it is suitable for all breeds of chicken, as well as other poultry.

It comes fully assembled and includes a training guide to help you teach your chickens how to use it.

It needs just over one pound of weight to activate the lid, so it wouldn’t be suitable for very young chickens.

Happy Henhouse Treadle Feeder

We love the fact that the Happy Henhouse Treadle Feeder has three different feeding trays, which means you can feed your other poultry from the same feeder.

We also love that it is made from 100% rust-free aluminum.

You would need a second feeder for younger chicks when you have them.

  • 100% rust-proof
  • Suitable for all climates
  • Weight activated
  • Doesn’t need to be hung or fixed anywhere
  • Can offer a mix of different feeds and water
  • Not suitable for younger chickens
  • Will take a bit of training for your chickens to use

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Chicken Feeder to Prevent Waste Buyers Guide

Before choosing the chicken feeder that is best for you, it is best to know what features to look for and understand each of them.

That is because there are a lot of different options available these days, and they all differ slightly, depending on your flock size, needs, and preferences.

Some of the things you should consider before making your final choice are the type of feeder you want, the materials it’s made from, the size, and the cost.

Find out why those factors are important.

1. Feeder Type

There are many different types of chicken feeders available.

Which one is best for you will depend on where you plan to put it, as well as the size of your flock.

Here are the various types you can choose from:

  • Open Container

An open container, such as a bucket or bowl, can work well but ideally only for your short-term needs, while you look at other options. 

Not only is it open to pests and outside contamination, but you’re also likely to see a lot of wastage as the chickens will scratch around in it, sending food flying everywhere!.

  • Trough Chicken Feeder

This type of feeder is great if you have a larger flock since it allows all of your chooks to eat at the same time.

You can’t fill up these types of feeders too much, though, since you’re likely to have the same problem as with the open container.

  • Bell Chicken Feeder

These are great for cooped up smaller flocks, or you can use several of these for larger flocks.

You can also hang this feeder easily to help prevent wastage.

  • Treadle Chicken Feeder

If you have free-range hens, then treadle chicken feeders are great since your chooks can access the food, but not vermin.

Metal treadle chicken feeders will also have the added benefit of being waterproof so that the feed doesn’t spoil if it rains.

  • PVC Chicken Feeder

These chicken feeders have really good capacity and will help to minimize wastage from spills.

The only drawback is that you might need one of these for every chicken you have, as only one bird can feed at a time.

2. Material (Plastic/Steel)

The material your feeder is made from is important since it will affect how durable and long-lasting it is.

It may also affect the weight of the feeder, which is important if you plan on hanging it.

3. Size

Size or capacity is also essential since ideally, you’ll want all of your chicks to be able to eat at the same time, plus it will affect how often you have to feed them.

It is recommended that around six centimeters of feeder space is needed for each chicken you own.

4. Cost

As with everything in life, the cost of a feeder will be important.

But don’t let yourself automatically be drawn to the lowest cost feeder, as it may only be suitable for a single chicken.

Or, the lowest cost option may also be the flimsiest, and you’ll find that you have to replace it all the time because it keeps breaking.

Consider the cost in relation to how many feeders you’ll need, along with how long they’ll last.

Also, if it comes with a warranty on the product, guaranteeing its lifespan.

A feeder that lasts you a lifetime will be worth the extra money in the long run.

5. Pest-Proofing

Last but not least, consider how pest-proof the feeder is.

You don’t want a feeder that can be easily accessed by lots of insects and vermin as otherwise, you’ll end up feeding the whole neighborhood!

Feeding the wildlife will not only cost you a lot more, but it will also deprive your chickens of food.

Frequently Asked Questions Chicken Feeder

1. Should I Hang My Chicken Feeder?

Many people choose to hang their chicken feeders.

If you have somewhere appropriate to hang your feeder, then there are a couple of different reasons as to why this might be a good idea.

The main reason is that chickens can waste an awful lot of food by knocking their feeders over, and hanging the feeders can help to prevent this.

Being elevated off the ground also means that your feeder will be more protected from residue groundwater, insects, and your chickens themselves from defecating in their food.

2. Where Should I Put My Chicken Feeder?

The ideal place to put your chicken feeder is just inside the door of your chicken coop.

Inside the coop, the feeder will be more protected from the elements and will also help to encourage your birds to sleep inside the coop at night.

It’s important to do everything you can to encourage the birds to nest in their boxes so that you don’t have to go on an egg hunt every morning before breakfast.

3. How Many Chicken Feeders Do I Need?

Around six centimeters of feeder space per chicken over six weeks old is recommended, but it’s not quite as clear cut as that.

Unfortunately, it will depend from flock to flock and whether they are all comfortable eating together.

More timid chooks may lose out at dinner time from fear of approaching the feeder in larger flocks.

More aggressive chooks will also eat more than they need to, especially when they’re faced with competition for food.

This is why it’s so important that you have enough feeders for your flock.

The best way to work out how many chicken feeders you need is to watch your flock eat.

Make an assessment yourself as to whether they’re all eating enough and, if not, add another feeder.

4. How Many Times a Day Should I Feed My Chickens?

Throughout the day, you should give your chicken access to a constant supply of food. 

Whether this means you feed them once in the morning or several times throughout the day will depend on you and the capacity of your feeder.

Depending on what brand of feed you are using, the food manufacturers may recommend an amount of food per chicken, around 120mg normally. 

Ensure that you clean the feeding area regularly, especially if you’re feeding them scraps so that you don’t attract flies, insects, rats, and mice.

5. Do You Put Food and Water in Chicken Coop at Night?

When your chickens return to their roost, they should sleep pretty soundly all night with no need for food or water.

So, no matter where you keep your feeder and waterer, whether it’s inside or outside, you don’t need to provide them with food or water at night.

Recommendation of the Best Chicken Feeder to Prevent Waste

All the feeders that made it to this list offer something slightly different to suit your needs and flock.

Our personal favorite for the best chicken feeder to prevent waste is the incredibly efficient and straightforward plastic feeder from RentACoop that sits at number one on our list.

We love the fact that it can sit on the floor or hang from its handle, indoors or outdoors, so it’s ready to go, right away.

It also has an extra-large capacity, holding 20 pounds of feed, so depending on your flock size, you only need to refill it every so often.

It’s really easy to refill and is completely waterproof so you can use its capacity to the maximum, without worrying about the food spoiling after rain.

You can choose whether you want the feeding ports to be on the corners, or opposite each other, depending on your chosen placement.

Upgrade your chicken feeder today to start saving money on wasted feed, and you won’t be sorry!

Best Wire for Chicken Coops of 2020 Reviews

best wire for chicken coop

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Best Wire for Chicken Coops – Setting up a chicken coop with a few chickens at home is a rewarding way to get your own supply of eggs as well as some fun and interesting pets that you can take care of.

Chicken ownership isn’t a lifelong dream for everyone, but it is a practical way to obtain home-grown eggs without too much work. 

When setting up a coop, you would need the best wire for chicken coops. 

Both the coop itself and your chicken run should be secured so that your chickens can live safely and happily.

Today, we will cover the top wire options you can use to build, repair, and manage your chicken compound. 

These are some of the best options around, but they are each a bit unique. 

Pay attention to the qualities in our buyer’s guide, as well as the answers to common questions so that you can choose the right option for your home and ensure you have a secure coop.

How to Keep Animals Out of Garden Without Fences

Best Wire for Chicken Coops Review

Amagabeli Garden Home Galvanized Welded Chicken Cage Wire

First up, we will look at this ½-Inch Galvanized Welded Chicken Cage Wire, which is a hardware cloth option that meets the needs of every chicken owner with ease.

The ½-Inch Galvanized Welded Chicken Cage Wire is a high-quality roll of galvanized hardware cloth or chicken wire, which is long enough to set up most runs.

The 19-gauge wire used to make this fencing is easy to cut with scissors, and you can shape it up as needed by simply bending the fencing since it holds its shape very well.

The openings on this hardware cloth fencing are only ½” by ½”, so you can be confident that raccoons, foxes, and other predators will have a hard time bending the fence, reaching throw, or chewing it apart.

Amagabeli Galvanized Welded Chicken Cage Wire Pros and Cons

This long roll of high-quality chicken cloth is available in both 50 feet and 100 feet rolls, so you can save money by buying it in bulk and also make your overall construction easier since you won’t need to worry about running out.

This particular fencing has great strength and durability ratings because it is made from galvanized and welded 19-gauge wire that can stand up to the elements, protect your chickens from predators, and last for more than one or two years since the metal has been treated properly.

Some people have struggled with the huge roll because it gets looser when you unwrap it, and then you need to wrap it tighter to be able to store it easily again. 

The best way to avoid this issue is to try not to buy much more fencing than you need to use or get a friend to help you rewrap it up before you put it into storage.

  • Different sized rolls available
  • Galvanized metals last longer than comparable rolls
  • Doesn’t rust easily
  • Keeps predators out
  • Easy to cut
  • Some welds pop; can be repaired
  • Difficult to roll back up
  • Not as flexible as hexagonal chicken wire

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YARDGARD Galvanized Fence

Next, we will look at one of the YARDGARD Galvanized Fence products; specifically, the Poultry Netting item #308419B. 

Let’s see what it has to offer for chicken owners looking to set up or secure their chicken coop and run.

The YARDGARD Poultry Netting is a true chicken wire made in the traditional hexagonal shape that chicken owners know and love when they want to improve or make their next chicken enclosure. 

The wire used to make this fencing is a 20-gauge, hexagonal weave coated with zinc and silver for extra durability and rust-prevention.

The YARDGARD Poultry Netting comes in a 150-foot roll and is about 18 inches tall, so you may be able to finish your structure with just one roll depending on what size it is.

Good and Bad About YARDGARD Galvanized Fence

The wire used to create this particular poultry netting is galvanized before woven into the traditional hexagonal pattern, and that helps to prevent rusting.

Many types of chicken wire do the coating process after the weaving method, and this can lead to quality issues with the galvanization process, so it’s good to see this difference. 

Additionally, galvanizing in this way helps to retain additional flexibility in the overall fence structure, which will make it easier to shape into place and stretch as needed.

With the high flexibility of the YARDGARD Poultry Netting, it needs to be secured for it to stand tall so you cannot use it as a standalone fence. 

This fencing also isn’t an ideal choice for anyone who has a lot of strong predators in their area since the fence can be bent or broken through.

  • Flexible
  • Easy to unroll and shape into place
  • Lightweight
  • Galvanized, durable wire used to make the hexagonal shape
  • Cannot keep strong predators out due to high flexibility
  • Bends in the middle if not secured

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Fencer Wire 19-Gauge Galvanized Hardware Cloth

Next up is another super-strong option built for chicken owners who need to prevent all sorts of predators from breaking in the coop: the Fencer Wire 19-Gauge Galvanized Hardware Cloth.

This is a hardware cloth chicken fencing you can use to protect chickens in their coops or run with ease. 

The Fencer Wire is a 19-gauge hardware cloth with ½” by ½” holes. 

Many chicken owners feel that this small size is ideal when dealing with predators.

The material used is a double-dipped, galvanized hardware cloth that is sure to stay strong, durable, and rust-free for longer than comparable options.

Fencer Galvanized Hardware Cloth

This brand offers hardware cloth rolls in many different heights and sizes, so it is effortless to choose an option that will save you money or fit your project perfectly. 

The best way to buy is to make sure that you buy enough fencing but also consider how big of a roll you will be able to maneuver while setting up your coop.

Some owners have had issues with their Fencer Wire 19-Gauge Galvanized Hardware Cloth arriving dented, which can happen during transit even to the most durable fence types. 

Thankfully, this fencing can be bent and molded in various ways without causing much damage to the fence itself, so you can easily reshape the fence using your hands or a pair of pliers with pretty good success.

  • Many different sized rolls available
  • Reliable company
  • Thorough galvanization method
  • Great value
  • Welds may break on cut edges
  • Denting may need to be reshaped

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Amagabeli Garden Home Hardware Cloth Galvanized Welded Wire Roll

This ½-Inch Hardware Cloth Galvanized Welded Wire Roll is another great fencing option for those who want to choose something on the super-strong end of the spectrum.

This hardware cloth option has a ½-inch mesh opening that is perfect for setting up a chicken coop that needs the ultimate protection from potential predators in the area.

The fencing is galvanized and double-zinc coated, which means that it is very rust-resistant and should last for a long time.

While the weave is tight and well supported, it still has some flexibility to it so it can be wrapped and bent where needed.

Amagabeli Hardware Cloth Galvanized Welded Wire Roll

This is 19-gauge fencing that comes in a roll of 100-feet and a height of 36 inches. 

This is enough to set up nearly any coop with some fencing to spare for repairs.

Thanks to the large roll size, this chicken fencing is a great value and will help to protect your chickens for years thanks to the high durability it offers.

Some owners had problems with production issues with the ½-Inch Hardware Cloth Galvanized Welded Wire Roll, such as some large caps because of missing crosswires. 

While uncommon, you can repair this type of issue easily by layering on another piece of the fencing for an extra durable section.

  • Highly galvanized; great durability
  • Great value
  • Works for predator-proofing
  • Easy to cut with wire cutters
  • Potential production issues
  • Can be hard to set up alone

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Amagabeli Garden Home Hexagonal Chicken Wire

The last option we will introduce today is this Two-inch Hexagonal Chicken Wire 20-Gauge Mesh, which is a true chicken wire option that is good for some things and not for others.

This chicken wire is a two-inch mesh opening wire, which means that all of the hexagonal openings have a diameter of two inches. 

The fencing is made from a 20-gauge galvanized wire that has a good balance of durability and flexibility.

Amagabeli Garden Hexagonal Chicken Wire

The Two-inch Hexagonal Chicken Wire 20-Gauge Mesh is perfect for protecting certain areas of your yard from your chickens. 

The wide openings are big enough to deter your chickens, but not so large that they are constricting for other activities around the yard.

While the big openings are great for keeping chickens where you want them to be, they can be easy for certain types of predators to get into your coop area. 

Thus, it is best to use this type of chicken wire in conjunction with a smaller mesh on or in limited areas.

  • Very flexible
  • Lightweight
  • Easy to install alone
  • Great for controlling where chickens go
  • Not predator-proof
  • Durability issues

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Chicken Coop Wire Buyer’s Guide

All chicken wire can, at first glance, seem to be created equally. 

Chicken wire is chicken wire, right? Wrong!

This wire may all seem similar at first, but there are actually quite a few important differences that you should be paying attention to when shopping around for the right chicken coop wire for your setup. 

The following are the features that we believe to be most important when determining which you want to invest in:

Chicken Wire Size

The first thing that you want to consider about chicken wire is the size. 

When talking about the size of chicken wire, you are referring to the size of the wire openings.

There are many different sizes of chicken wire available.  

Small chicken wire is usually around ½ inches, and larger varieties can be one or two inches.

The pattern on the chicken wire is nearly always hexagonal, and the most common chicken wires are 18 or 20 gauge in weight. 

The ½-inch chicken wire is most commonly used because it is pretty small and may help to prevent some predator break-ins, but you should go as small as possible. 

If you can find a ¼-inch chicken wire or double up chicken wire layers to make the holes even smaller, that is a good idea to keep your chickens safe.

Chicken Wire Material

Most chicken wire is made out of some type of metal. 

You can find chicken wire made from metal, steel, bare steel, galvanized steel, and other coated metals, as well; the galvanized chicken wire is most common. 

Galvanized metal is coated with zinc to prevent corrosion and rusting, so it is good to have galvanized items when there is a possibility of exposure to elements causing such.

When you choose a chicken wire made from galvanized steel or iron, it will be less likely to rust or corrode. 

You can also find chicken wire that is galvanized and also coated in plastic. 

The plastic coating will ensure even more additional years of use from the wire, so that can be a good choice.

Chicken wire usually rusts in about five years when used in a dry climate, and it may need to be replaced more frequently in damp climates.

Durability

The size of the overall chicken wire holes isn’t the only size-related aspect that you want to think about; there is also gauge size to consider.

Gauge is the width of the wire used to create the chicken wire fence. 

This usually ranges from 19 to 22 when looking at the wire.

Durability and strength increase with gauge when looking at the galvanized wire, but the gauge isn’t the only thing that affects strength. 

The overall strength of the chicken wire will depend on how tight the weave is; chicken wire that has a high gauge and small holes, such as a ½-inch wire, will be solid. 

Strong chicken wire is important for ensuring that it won’t get bent out of shape easily, it won’t break down easily, and will help to keep predators out.

Should you need to find something even stronger than chicken wire to protect against extra-determined predators, using hardware cloth can be a good choice. 

You’ll find a few examples of that powerful material on today’s list.

Cost

It would be best if you consider what your budget is for chicken wire. 

You must also know how much is reasonable to pay for each foot of wire.

The cost is usually related to weave tightness, and the gauge of the wire used to make the fence.

Chicken Coop Wire FAQs

1. How Do You Attach Chicken Wire to a Coop?

When using chicken wire, you need to be sure that you attach it to the coop properly so that the chickens won’t escape their designated areas and also so that predators are not able to easily move it and break into the coop.

If using a T-post to attach your wires, you can hook the wire into the tabs on the post and then use pliers to squeeze those same metal tabs shut for a secure attachment.

If you are attaching chicken wire directly to a coop or something like a fence post, you can also use staples to attach each row of chicken wire, provided that you make sure the fence is level and taut.

2. What Is Stronger Than Chicken Wire?

Chicken wire is not always going to be the right option for your chicken coop even though its name might make it seem like that is the best option.

In many areas, the chicken wire wouldn’t be strong enough to keep predators out of the coop, but there are workarounds that you can try, such as extending the wire out from the coop or digging it into the ground.

However, you might just need a different material altogether.

Another option that you can use to protect your chickens is hardware cloth, another type of wire mesh fencing that is commonly used with chicken coops and runs.

Hardware cloth is a very durable wire mesh made from thick gauge wire, has small openings, and is welded at the corners to ensure that it cannot be easily ripped or torn by animals trying to break into your coop.

If you need to find something stronger than chicken wire, we recommend hardware cloth; you could even use a combination of both!

3. Can Chickens Stand on Chicken Wire?

Chickens can stand on chicken wire, but there is a chance that it will begin to hurt their feet over time. 

Additionally, their nails won’t wear down naturally since they would be on a flat, hard surface, so having a mesh floor isn’t always going to be the best idea depending on your chickens and their needs.

Ideally, you want to use something soft and natural for them to walk around on, such as pine shavings or other types of shavings.

4. How Do You Make Chicken Wire Tighter?

To be able to attach and secure the chicken wire with the right tension is a real skill, and it will take some practice to get it right. 

The chicken wire itself is quite flexible, and it doesn’t lend much support to you when you are trying to get it into place. 

This means that while you are attaching it to a coop, fence, or other boards, you will need to know how to stretch it so that it is taut and secure.

Here are some tips and tricks that you should use when you are trying to get your chicken wire attached properly.

They will help to ensure that it is as tight as it needs to be:

  1. Get some help. Having one person on each end of a wire section will make stretching easier.
  2. Set your posts before you cut any pieces so that they don’t get cut too loose.
  3. Lay the wire next to where you will put it up after you unroll it and walk on it to get the kinks out and begin the stretching process.
  4. Only unroll as much as you need for each post section, and stop to walk on it between those moments.

If that method doesn’t work for you, don’t despair; there are other ways to build your wire sections, too.

In this video, the chicken owner demonstrates how he is making a single fence section and making the chicken wire tighter than before:

5. Can Raccoons Bite Through Chicken Wire?

There are ways for raccoons to get through chicken wire, and it is even possible for them to chew through the chicken wire if they are really determined to get into the coop. 

This, however, won’t always be their first choice.

If the holes are big enough or the wire isn’t strong enough, some raccoons will be able to pull the wire apart with their tiny hands; they are quite strong!

Chicken owners plagued with raccoon thieves stealing their eggs may want to add hardware cloth to their chicken wire fences. 

Hardware cloth is a tougher type of fencing that has even smaller holes than chicken wire, usually around ¼ inches, and this type of fencing is nearly impossible for raccoons to get through if it is secured properly.

Best Wire for Chicken Coops Recommendation

Now that you’ve learned about what is the best wire for chicken coops building, it is time for you to choose your own chicken wire.

Among the options reviewed, we find that the ½-Inch Galvanized Welded Chicken Cage Wire stands out as the best option. 

This hardware cloth is stronger than traditional chicken wire, and that is why it is the chicken fencing that most chicken owners turn to when they are setting up and securing their coop. 

This type of solid fencing is sure to keep your chickens in place while also ensuring their safety from any passing predators, and that is key when you want to have a successful chicken operation!

Best Chicken Egg Incubators of 2020: Complete Review

best chicken egg incubator

Best Chicken Egg Incubators – The chicken or the egg, which came first?

Well, both answers seem to be off the mark, because it all starts with an incubator!

Yes, the importance of this heated environment in the hatching process should never be underestimated.

Modern-day incubators come in all shapes and sizes, and the abundance of options can be overwhelming at times.

For that reason, we listed the best chicken egg incubators on the current market, together with a comprehensive buyer’s guide.

Best Chicken Egg Incubators Reviews

So, let’s dive deeper into the warm world of chicken eggs.

VIVOHOME Mini Digital Egg Incubator

To kick off our list of the top-rated best chicken egg incubators, we decided to start with a small model.

As the word “mini” suggests, the VIVOHOME Digital Egg Incubator is a compact and lightweight life-giving gadget.

As such, this device is an excellent choice for science teachers or parents who want their kids to learn about the egg hatching process.

Nurturing and taking care of the chicks is a great way for children to develop responsibility and love for animals, after all.

So, let’s see how this tiny incubator behaves in action.

The VIVOHOME Mini Incubator is suitable for any species, which means that you can incubate the eggs from ducks, pigeons, or quails.

Depending on the size of the eggs, you will be able to place from nine to 12 eggs in the incubator.

Adjustable dividers can also help with positioning and placement of the eggs.

Nonetheless, the essential component of this model is the LED display, which provides real-time data.

By using the commands on the control panel, users can adjust the temperature inside the incubator.

When it comes to temperature, VIVOHOME Mini Digital Incubator offers a decent range.

Even so, it’s best to keep the temperature around 38 degrees Celsius.

In order to provide eggs with even heat, this incubator will automatically rotate the eggs at regular intervals.

Automatic egg turning is a valuable feature, and few incubators in this budget range can offer this possibility.

Another notable characteristic of this model is the ease of assembly.

The components of the incubator are also sturdy and easy to clean, which makes this unit a convenient option for small commercial farmers.

What’s to Like About VIVOHOME Mini Digital Egg Incubator

The VIVOHOME Mini Digital Incubator is affordable and budget-friendly.

As such, this model does not come with a bunch of high-end features.

Nevertheless, this incubator is attractive and eye-catching.

For instance, the bright LED display is a noteworthy addition.

Likewise, automatic egg turning is a feature that removes the need for constant involvement in the hatching process.

On the other hand, the VIVOHOME Mini Digital Incubator is far from being a perfect chicken egg incubator.

For example, you have to open the lid to add water, which is an annoying element.

Also, this model does not include a humidity gauge; you will either have to buy a separate one or rely on experience.

We also noticed that the inside temperature fluctuates without any apparent reason.

So, consider buying a third-party thermostat if the pre-set one starts giving you a headache.

  • Affordable
  • Lightweight
  • Automatic egg turning
  • LED display
  • No humidity sensor
  • Occasional temperature spikes
  • Small capacity

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KEMANNER Seven-Egg Digital Incubator

The second entry is also a compact and portable digital incubator.

With the ability to hatch seven chicken eggs, the KEMANNER Digital Incubator is a typical household unit.

However, this is only one of the available variations of this incubator.

To be precise, you can also buy larger KEMANNER models, which can incubate 48 or even 56 eggs.

If you need an incubator for educational purposes, or if you are an aspiring farmer, the seven-egg model from KEMANNER will do the job.

The distinguishing feature of this incubator is the dome-shaped transparent cover on the top, which provides users with 360-view, allowing you to keep an eye on the hatching process from all sides.

Likewise, the size of this chicken egg incubator will probably catch your attention.

The exact dimensions of this device are 6.8 by 6.2 inches, and it weighs only 1.25 pounds.

As a result, users can move the incubator around without any problems.

The KEMANNER Seven-Egg Digital Incubator has a small footprint, which means that you can easily place it in the corner of your kitchen counter.

When it comes to functionality, it is necessary to say that this incubator comes with digital temperature controls.

Also, it uses 20W of power, which is fantastic if you are energy-conscious.

What’s to Like About KEMANNER Digital Incubator

The simplistic design of this incubator is one of its most significant features.

In essence, the convenience and usability of this model are at a high level; even small children could operate this incubator, as well.

Of course, the fan-assisted airflow is a nice touch, too.

However, the effortless viewing of the eggs is the primary reason why the KEMANNER Seven-Egg Digital Incubator earns top marks for convenience.

The lack of automatic rotation is a considerable downside of this model.

This means that you will have to turn the eggs manually, which is a time-consuming activity.

Also, many users complain that the KEMANNER Digital Incubator produces an irritating beeping noise every time the humidity drops below the recommended limit.

Unfortunately, these fluctuations seem to be a frequent occurrence.

  • Portable and compact
  • Clear viewing window
  • Fan-assisted airflow
  • Energy-efficient
  • Capacity
  • No automatic turning
  • Annoying alarm sound

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Magicfly Digital Egg Incubator

If you need a decent-sized egg incubator, the next model we’ll feature might be your cup of tea.

The Magicfly Digital Egg Incubator is a reliable device that can incubate up to 24 chicken eggs at once.

Even though it features a minimalist design, this incubator is easy to recognize.

So, let’s take an in-depth look into the notable characteristics of the Magicfly Digital Egg Incubator.

With the help of this spacious model, you can start incubating chickens, geese, or ducks.

An LED display will allow you to control the temperature; plus, an inconspicuous egg turner will rotate the eggs automatically.

When it comes to temperature, this hatcher offers an impressive range; you can set the temperature anywhere from 30 to 40 degrees Celsius.

All the while, the automatic turner will rotate the eggs.

If anything goes wrong, an alarm sound will inform the users of a potential problem.

After all, chicken eggs are delicate when it comes to heat/cold and humidity.

Also, the sides of this digital incubator are transparent; thus, you can easily monitor the situation without opening the lid or disrupting the hatching process.

The body of the Magicfly Digital Egg Incubator is made of durable but healthy plastic.

Users can clean the containers with ease, and the assembly of this incubator is straightforward, as well.

Magicfly Digital Incubator Pros and Cons

As you can see, the Magicfly Digital Egg Incubator offers excellent value for money.

It comes equipped with automatic temperature control as well as auto-rotation of the eggs.

The capacity of this model is suitable for all purposes, too.

The Magicfly Digital Egg Incubator lets you hatch up to 24 chicken eggs simultaneously.

Therefore, this model seems like a perfect choice for poultry farmers.

When it comes to downsides, the Magicfly Incubator does not have many weak spots., though the lack of a humidity gauge is the most noticeable drawback of this model.

After all, humidity is a vital factor in the hatching process.

Also, the price of this model may deter some people.

Nonetheless, you get what you pay for, as the old proverb says.

 

  • Automatic egg turner
  • Automatic temperature control
  • Egg capacity
  • Side-windows for excellent visibility
  • Pricey
  • No humidity sensor
  • Bulky

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OppsDecor Intelligent Egg Incubator

In case you need a premium-quality egg incubator, look no further than the fantastic OppsDecor model.

Believe it or not, this high-end model will allow you to hatch as many as 48 chicken eggs.

Yet, when it comes to what the OppsDecor Intelligent Egg Incubator can offer, this is just the tip of the iceberg.

A wide range of features makes this device a perfect fit for commercial use.

At the same time, intuitive controls will allow beginners to get the grasp of the hatching process, as well.

First of all, the capacity of this unit deserves a lot of praise.

A few household incubators can hold 48 chicken eggs at once, and that is why poultry farmers should consider splashing the cash on this model.

What’s more, the OppsDecor Egg Incubator comes with automatic temperature control as well as a fully automatic egg turning system.

The incubator will rotate the eggs every two hours, removing the need for human intervention.

The convenience of this model is also visible in the design of the LED control panel.

The display will provide users with a bunch of useful and relevant information.

For instance, you will be able to check the temperature, humidity level, hatching days, and so on.

A polycarbonate lid covers the top of the OppsDecor Intelligent Egg Incubator, and the sides of the unit are translucent, which allows users to keep an eye on the eggs at all times.

Also, the OppsDecor incubator comes equipped with a built-in fan and a warning system.

This ensures that the ventilation will disperse the heat evenly throughout the hatching area.

If the humidity drops below the recommended level, the alarm bells will go off and warn you about the danger.

To avoid these issues, add water through the small hole every two or three days.

What is to Like and Dislike About the OppsDecor Egg Incubator

The OppsDecor Intelligent Egg Incubator is a fantastic device, and there are many positive aspects to this model.

To name a few, we could mention the automatic temperature control or the auto egg rotation.

Also, the quiet fan is a neat little trick that will distribute the heat and warm all the eggs during the incubation.

Well, the capacity of the OppsDecor Intelligent Egg Incubator is both a blessing and a curse.

The weight of this unit exceeds 10 pounds, which could be problematic for some users.

Also, the alarm system may be frustrating at times.

Then again, the warning system is the necessary evil, so all you can do is try to be patient for the duration of the incubation process.

  • Large capacity
  • Automatic temperature control
  • Informational LED display
  • Built-in fan
  • Expensive
  • Hefty (10.3 pounds)

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TAIMIKO Automatic Egg Incubator

Last but not least, we will explore the features of the TAIMIKO Automatic Egg Incubator.

The design of this model is sleek and modern, but there is more than meets the eye with TAIMIKO.

For instance, this portable egg incubator will let you hatch 10 chicken eggs with a high success rate.

A range of features makes the TAIMIKO one of the best on the market, so let’s take a closer look at the elements that make this model so attractive and appealing.

As the name implies, the TAIMIKO Automatic Egg Incubator offers automatic temperature control.

In other words, the computer does all the work related to thermal management; all you need to do is place the eggs inside and close the lid.

When it comes to the cover, the round shape of this incubator allows perfect visibility from all sides.

On top of that, the TAIMIKO Automatic Egg Incubator comes equipped with an automatic egg turner.

Every two hours, this system will rotate the eggs, increasing the chances of successful hatching.

To disperse the heat all over the incubation area, this model uses a big fan, but even so, the fan does not produce a lot of noise.

As such, you can keep this chicken egg incubator indoors without any problems.

The convenient LED display on the front of the unit will let you control every aspect of the incubation process.

TAIMIKO Automatic Egg Incubator Pros and Cons

Without a doubt, the stylish aesthetic is the best asset of this incubator, but its functionality is at a high level, as well.

Automatic temperature control is a noteworthy feature, and the same applies to the ventilation system.

Of course, the automatic egg rotation provides a hassle-free hatching process and is a nice feature, too.

The capacity of the TAIMIKO incubator might be too small for some farmers.

At the same time, the price of this unit is on the higher end of the spectrum.

The lack of a humidity gauge may cause inconvenience to some users, too.

If anything, you will have to consider buying an extra humidity sensor to keep the eggs in perfect condition.

  • Sleek design
  • Low noise
  • High hatching rate
  • Intuitive thermal management
  • Auto egg turner
  • No humidity sensor
  • Small water container
  • No warning system

Best Chicken Egg Incubator Buyer’s Guide

As you can see, chicken egg incubators can offer a wide array of features.

For that reason, it can be tricky to choose the appropriate model.

To avoid those costly mistakes, we decided to share with you the essential elements of an egg incubator.

By going through this buyer’s guide, you will learn all there is to know about buying an incubator for your needs and preferences.

That said, you should be able to make an informed decision and buy the best egg incubator out there.

Humidity and Temperature

When it comes to the hatching process, humidity and temperature are the two crucial factors. As such, they demand special attention.

The recommended temperature for chicken eggs is around 38 degrees Celsius.

On the other hand, humidity depends on the duration of the hatching process.

As a rule of thumb, the best results come from keeping the moisture at 65% to 70%.

Your best bet is to buy a chicken egg incubator that features automatic temperature control.

Likewise, we recommend buying a device that comes equipped with humidity pumps.

Of course, high-end incubators also come with fancy bells and whistles, such as warning lights and alarm sounds.

Viewing Window

If your idea of the fun-filled evening includes staring at a bunch of chicken eggs, you’re in for a treat.

By choosing the best egg incubators out there, you will surely get the opportunity to observe the incubation process.

As dull as this may sound, there is a reason why farmers like to have a viewing window installed on the incubator.

First of all, transparent covers are convenient because you don’t have to open the lid to check on the eggs.

The second reason is the miracle of birth, and a viewing window gives you front row seats to this awe-inspiring moment.

So, buy a model with a window; your kids will thank you for it!

Chicken Egg Incubators Capacity

The purpose of the incubator has a direct impact on the size of the unit.

This means that a school teacher will need a smaller device than a poultry farmer.

In translation, the capacity is another word for the number of eggs that the incubator can handle simultaneously.

At the moment, the best egg incubators offer a range of options when it comes to capacity.

To be precise, you can buy models that hold only a handful of eggs or go for pro incubators that can hatch hundreds or even thousands of chicken eggs.

Egg Turner

In nature, hens will move around and rotate the eggs every once in a while.

For that reason, it is necessary to turn the eggs in an incubator every two or three hours.

Obviously, this can be a time-consuming and tedious process.

For that reason, we recommend going for a model that features an automatic egg turner.

Manual turning requires more involvement in the hatching process.

With automatic rotation, the system will turn the eggs on its own, without your interference.

On some models, you can even set the schedule for the rotation.

Size

The size of the incubator is in close relation to the capacity.

Even so, both of these factors depend on the purpose of the hatcher in the first place.

When it comes to size, the goal is to have a portable and lightweight incubator.

The bigger the unit, the harder it will be to move around.

Likewise, you should always consider storage space.

If you are living in a small apartment, a massive incubator will take up a lot of space.

Therefore, look for a compact and lightweight unit.

By doing so, the hatching process will turn into an enjoyable and fun activity.

Ease of Assembly and Cleaning

Speaking of fun, ease of use will also contribute to the overall enjoyment levels.

In other words, pay attention to the quality of materials when buying a new chicken egg incubator.

As a rule of thumb, a well-designed device will be easy to assemble.

At the same time, such incubators are easy to clean and remain in good shape.

Moreover, you will find premium incubators that are dishwasher-friendly, so pay attention to this element, as well.

Chicken Egg Incubators FAQs

1. How do you use an egg incubator?

The concept of a chicken egg incubator is pretty straightforward.

Just place the eggs inside, raise the temperature and humidity to the recommended level, and watch the magic unfold.

In other words, the chicken egg incubators will replicate the heat provided by the hens.

The best ones also come with extra features that can improve the hatching success rate.

2. Will eggs still hatch if they get cold?

One of the essential factors during the hatching process is temperature; you must keep the eggs in a warm and humid environment at all times.

If the eggs get too cold, the embryonic development could be disrupted.

In translation, the chicken will not develop, and you can discard the damaged egg.

3. What temperature will kill chicken eggs?

The recommended temperature for the hatching process is 38 degrees Celsius.

Of course, small fluctuations are acceptable, as long as the temperature spikes are not drastic.

However, any temperature below 27 degrees Celsius will kill the eggs.

Also, if the temperature rises above 41 degrees, the embryo will not develop.

4. How do you incubate chicken eggs?

When it comes to the hatching process, chicken eggs spend 21 days in the incubation chamber.

Nonetheless, humidity and temperature can affect the operation and change the duration of the process.

Either way, you should place clean and healthy-looking eggs into the incubator.

Make sure to add water into the reservoir to provide moisture to the eggs.

5. What happens if humidity is too high in an incubator?

As we said, the humidity is crucial in the incubation process.

The appropriate humidity levels will depend on the stage of embryonic development.

If the embryo is older, it will be more tolerant of spikes in humidity.

Nonetheless, the primary side-effect of extreme moisture is a late hatch.

Our Recommendation of the Best Chicken Egg Incubators

The quality of your chicken egg incubator is of the highest importance, and you should make sure to buy the appropriate device.

If you ask us, we think that the OppsDecor Intelligent Egg Incubator is the best chicken egg incubators on the market.

Impressive capacity and stylish design are just some of the characteristics of this chicken egg incubator.

From everything we’ve seen, this model offers the best value for money, too.

What to Feed Baby Chickens After Hatching: A Helpful Guide

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What to Feed Baby Chickens After Hatching – Much like any newborn, baby chickens require special attention, but especially when they’ve just hatched. 

You could say that they need “egg-cellent” nutrition to give them the best possible start in life. 

They need to have strong defenses and armed and ready to begin their journey from a baby hatchling to a fully feathered chicken.

Baby chicks undergo rapid development and transformation during those formative days, weeks, and months. 

Thus, you need to really understand what to feed baby chickens after hatching if you want them to stand a chance of surviving and thriving.

The Basic Needs of Chicks

Bringing baby chicks into the world is an exciting and rewarding time. 

There are three key things any baby chick requires for survival: warmth, water, and feed.

In that respect, they’re similar to human newborns. 

You might even want to give them the occasional cuddle too!

Giving your chicks a solid start in life will put them in good stead for happy and healthy adult life. 

And as we like to say, happy hens lay happy eggs, and we all like a bit of sunshine in our lives.

If you want your chick to transition seamlessly into a flock, then you need to start by providing them with the care, comfort, and nutrition they need even before they hatch.

Setting Up a Brooder

As mentioned, even before your chicks have hatched, you need to be preparing their environment so that the conditions are perfect for their arrival. 

Here are some things to keep in mind:

When to Set Up

We recommend that you set up your brooder 48 hours in advance. 

That way, there’s ample time for any equipment or bedding that you’ve installed to be set to the optimum temperature to keep those hatchlings warm and safe. 

The Equipment Needed

We’re basically recommending the following essential items: a brooder, a heat lamp, some bedding, lights, feeders, and waterers.

Best Chicken Egg Incubators

Brooder

The brooder is the very first home of your chicks. 

It should be warm and dry, draft-free, and comfortable. 

Ideally, it needs to be three to four square feet per chick. 

We also suggest making the brooder expandable and keeping it circular.

Heat Lamp

Next, you need to assemble your heat lamp in one corner of the brooder so that your bird is kept nice and warm. 

It is best to position the heat lamp about 20 inches above the litter.

We also recommend that you station it about three feet away from the actual guard walls. 

In terms of optimum temperature, for comfort sake, the area under the heat lamp should be 95 degrees Fahrenheit.

We’d also advise that you leave some space for your chicks to get away from the heater if they start to feel too hot. 

Over the following weeks, the temperature can be reduced by five degrees Fahrenheit until it finally reaches a minimum of 55 degrees.

Bedding

You also must put down proper bedding. 

We recommend absorbent wood shavings for the floor of your brooder. 

Ideally, make these three to four inches deep and ensure that you maintain the area by keeping it dry and odor-free.

Any wet bedding should be removed daily and replaced, especially if it’s close to your waterer. 

We advise against the use of material such as cedar shaving because it can have a strong and unpleasant odor that could also affect the long term health of the bird.

Lights

In the first week, to aid with growth and development, lighting should be supplied for as long as 22 hours a day and certainly no less than 18. 

You can reduce the light gradually to just 16 hours throughout the rest of the growing period. 

In terms of the strength of light required, a 40-watt bulb per 100 square feet of floor space is advisable.

Feeders

Depending upon how many chicks you’re hatching and what size brooder you have, will determine the number of feeders you would need. 

As a general rule of thumb, you’ll need to accommodate four linear inches of feeder space per bird. 

It’s not necessary to invest in anything too fancy. 

Just something simple like a clean egg carton will do an excellent job.

Filled with food, they’re easily accessible and ideal for young chicks. 

For the follow-up stage in their development, you should consider providing access to low-lying feeders or a trough feeder to transition them through to maturity. 

Best Chicken Feeder to Prevent Waste

Waterers

We’ll go on shortly to discuss the importance of water. It’s nothing short of essential. 

For every 25 chicks you have, you should fill two one-quart waterers full of room temperature water and, for now, position them inside the brooder.

For the water to be at room temperature, put the waterers inside the brooder 24 hours before the scheduled arrival of your chicks.

You may also opt to purchase the best chicken water heater, which can help provide your chicken water with the right temperature during the colder months.

What to Feed Baby Chickens After Hatching

what to feed baby chickens after hatching
what to feed baby chickens after hatching

From down to feathers, a tiny little peep to a hearty cluck cluck, a baby chick is on a rapid and exciting journey the minute it’s hatched. 

The most important physical transformation, though, takes place from the day they come into the world, for about the next eight weeks. 

By that time, they should already have reached three-quarters of what will be their adult weight. 

Hence, you must provide them with the essential nutrition they need to grow and set them off abundantly on the road ahead.

Water

You won’t be surprised to learn that the first thing a baby chick needs is abundant access to fresh, clean water. 

Safe to say that water plays a vital role in any baby chicks wellbeing, supporting all of its essential bodily functions. 

That’s particularly true during the early stages of development.

That is because there’s so much going on inside a chick’s little body.

Both chicks, as well as adult, fully mature chickens, consume approximately double water to physical feed. 

A lack of adequate water supply can have a severely detrimental effect on a young chick’s health and wellbeing. 

It’s critical then that you introduce your chicks to the brooding area as soon as they arrive and ensure that room temperate water is immediately on hand.

Chicks need to hydrate quickly, but you can leave it a few hours before you introduce them to feed.

How to Introduce

Your chicks must master the art of drinking and rehydrating their tiny bodies with fresh, quality water before they consume any food. 

You could try gently dipping their beaks into the water to coax them along and also help to familiarize them with where their water source is.

Strong, healthy chicks will naturally teach other chicks in your brooder how to drink. 

However, make sure that you are monitoring them all closely during those crucial first few hours to make sure no-one is missing out on drinking.

Feeds

Once your chicks are rehydrated, it’s time to introduce the essential nutrients and minerals they require for survival. 

There are plenty of excellent commercial options available, or you could make your own feed.

Can Chickens Have Strawberries: Some Fruity Ideas for Your Flock

Commercially Made

Similar to us humans, those young, recently hatched baby chicks also need a rich and balanced source of carbohydrates, fats, and minerals to support their growth. 

If you’re worried about what to feed baby chickens after hatching, don’t be! 

It’s really not rocket science but rather just good common sense.

If you’re at all concerned about getting it right, you can rely upon commercial chick starter mix. 

It’s been specially formulated to contain the perfect blend of minerals, proteins, nutrients, carbohydrates, and fats to support a baby chick’s growth and development.

Once your chick is ready to start pecking at food, you have plenty of options, with many commercial brands selling chick starter products. 

Typically, chicks need a nutritionally balanced chick starter mix up until they’re about eight weeks old.

These days, many of the big brands have follow-on products.

They’re easy to administer and will take your chick up to the point they’re ready to lay eggs themselves. 

These grower mixes provide them with the nutrition they require to lay a healthy and bountiful egg supply.

Home-Made Chick Food

If you don’t want to go down the commercial feed route, you can create your mix at home. 

A fantastic alternative that you can easily prepare at home and which baby chicks just love requires just two staple ingredients. 

All you need are eggs and oatmeal.

Baby chicks can thrive and grow on this mix. 

To prepare your feed, simply hard boil a couple of eggs, mash them up thoroughly, then mix with some oatmeal.

If you’re the kind of person who loves organic, this is a great alternative to commercial feed.

How to Introduce

Place their feed onto something like a simple square of paper or a clean egg flat. 

On the second day, you can progress and add the feed to the feeders positioned around your brooder. 

Once the chicks have mastered the art of feeding this way, you can go ahead and remove the papers or egg flats.

Reminder

Keep their food fresh. Empty, clean, and refill their waterers and feeders, at least once daily. 

As the chicks grow in size, you’re also going to need to raise the level of where your feeder is so that they’re level with the birds’ backs.

Protein-Rich Food

As soon as a baby chick is born, their anatomy starts to develop. 

Protein is a vital nutrient that a hungry, developing chick needs to support growth. 

It helps stimulate and support the growth of muscle and tissue as well as internal organs

It’s an essential building block and can be found naturally in worms.

As such, feel free to offer up a supply of fresh worms to satisfy the hunger and protein requirement of your chicks. 

Worms are abundantly found throughout the spring and summer months and are nature’s own home supplied source of fresh protein.

Treats

While their digestive system is still underdeveloped, you should be careful about what treats you give them as you don’t want to upset their delicate digestive system. 

Chop up some hard-boiled eggs along with sweetcorn to make a tasty and nutritious treat that they can easily digest.

Something like lettuce, hanging from the side of the brooder, is also a good option. 

It provides restless and inquisitive baby chicks with hours of fun and pecking practice!

Is It Okay to Offer Your Baby Chicks Grit?

A question that frequently pops up on forums is “Do recently hatched chicks need grit?“. 

The short answer is, it depends on what else they’re eating.

If you have baby chicks that are only eating a starter mix, they probably don’t need grit just yet. 

On the contrary, if they’re now at the stage where you’re adding in a range of supplemental food, such as scraps from your kitchen, then a bit of added grit will aid their digestive system.

Grit is just as it sounds; they’re little pieces of sand, stone, or earth from your local environment. 

If you are lucky enough to live in a nice temperate climate where your happy chicks wander around outside all day long, then they’ll naturally peck at grit, so you probably don’t have to worry. 

If not and they’re couped up for large parts of the day, make sure that you put out a source of grit as it really does help with digestion.

Raising baby chicks can be incredibly rewarding

Raising baby chicks can be incredibly rewarding and it’s wonderful to see them hatch and grow.

The sound of their little peeps and cheeps is adorable and good sign that your chicks aren’t just surviving, but thriving.

Remember to encourage your chicks to drink plenty of water.

Hatching can be an exhausting process and their little bodies need to rehydrate.

Don’t panic if they seem a little listless during the early days. They’re probably just tired.

Just make sure they always have access to a fresh supply of water and be sure to monitor them carefully to check they’re actually drinking.

Chicks quickly grow at an almost alarming rate, especially during the first few weeks so it’s important to get them started on a properly balanced chick food like a commercial or homemade starter feed.

As chicks mature, remember that their nutritional needs will change.

From 18 weeks onward, it’s time to adjust their feed to meet with their evolving nutritional needs.

Don’t be tempted either to save any leftover starter feed for the next time you plan hatching baby chicks.

It has a tendency to get moldy and take on bacteria that could kill them.

Can Chickens Have Strawberries: Some Fruity Ideas for Your Flock

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Can Chickens Have Strawberries – Many people keep chickens as pets, and the fresh eggs produced daily are something of a bonus.

Whether you’re keeping chickens as pets, or solely as egg producers, it’s essential to understand their diet better so that they stay healthy and happy.

If you’ve been wondering what to do with all of those cut-off strawberry tops, then you may ask “Can chickens have strawberries?”.

Let’s find out more about the do’s and don’ts of feeding scraps to chickens, as well as whether strawberries are good for them.

Can Chickens Have Strawberries?

When you’re deciding what to feed your chicken, it’s important to understand that chicken digests food differently from humans.

They also have smaller stomachs in relation to their size, but like humans, they do need a balanced diet in order to stay healthy.

And of course, we all want a healthy and happy flock that produces delicious eggs daily, right?

Chickens absolutely love strawberries, so the answer is yes, yes, and yes!

Recommended Daily Consumption

You should, however, limit their daily consumption of sugary snacks, such as strawberries, to a maximum of 10% of their total diet.

Their digestive systems don’t have the metabolic ability to process more sugar than this, so overfeeding them sugary treats will eventually lead to an unhealthy chook.

Warning on the Calyx

It would help if you also were more wary of giving them strawberry calyxes, which is the green bit on the top, from shop-bought strawberries due to pesticides it may be contaminated with.

Strawberries featured very high, number four in fact, on a list of the most pesticide-contaminated food items in 2015.

Birds are susceptible to pesticides and are more susceptible than most to health problems brought on by pesticides.

If you eat an egg from a sick bird, then you will get sick.

If your chickens are eating the calyxes of store-bought strawberries, then you’ll need to limit their amounts to avoid diarrhea.

You can also wash or soak them first to try to remove the bulk of the contaminants, or better yet, buy organic or grow them yourself.

In most farm animals, including chickens, diarrhea without immediate treatment often leads to death, so you should avoid causing it at all costs.

Strawberry as a Treat

Chickens love almost all fruits and vegetables, and many people choose to keep a flock to help recycle their family waste of peels and leftovers.

You can also use treats, such as strawberries, to help gain your flock’s love and trust.

Regularly hand feeding them these treats will also help you tame your chooks.

Before long, they’ll answer your call and come running to you to see what treats you have in store for them.

Food Your Chickens Will Love

can chickens have strawberries
Can Chickens Have Strawberries

If you don’t have strawberries to hand your chicken or aren’t willing to part with them, chickens also love these fruits listed below.

Just make sure that the bulk of their diet should still be made up of pellets or crumbles to ensure they get the protein and calcium they need.

Fruity Snacks

Here is a list of some of the fruits that your chickens will love to snack on.

Remember that these sugary, fruity treats should be limited to a maximum of 10% of their total diet. 

Apples

Avoid giving your chickens the apple seeds as they contain cyanide, but raw or cooked apples, even apple sauce, will be great for them.

Bananas

Chickens love the flesh of bananas but won’t eat the skins.

Bananas are a great source of potassium, which is really good for them too.

Berries

Blueberries and raspberries are very delicious to chickens and make a great bite-sized treat.

Grapes

Being slightly larger than berries, these snacks are also perfect for treating your chickens and easier to hand feed to them.

Melon 

Eat the center of the melon and give the outer rind to your chickens and watch them go crazy over it!

Watermelon, cantaloupe, your chickens will love this healthy treat, seeds, and all.

Pears

If the pears are still quite hard, then you’ll probably want to cut these into small pieces for your chooks, but pears make great treats otherwise.

Peaches

The softness of the flesh of a peach is a perfect choice for your chooks.

They won’t eat the hard pit in the center, and if you’re worried about them hurting their beaks on it, then you should remove it first.

Tomatoes

Yes, they’re a fruit. And yes, your chickens will love them!

Vegetable Snacks

Chickens will love to eat most vegetables that you have to hand, whether they’re whole veggies, peels, or stems. 

You can give them to your flock either raw, cooked, or straight from your leftovers, as long as you haven’t put too much salt on them.

Pumpkin will go down extremely well, and all of those seeds in the middle will act as a fantastic, all-natural de-wormer!

Grain Snacks

Your chickens will eat most grains, including cooked rice, pasta, grits, and oatmeal.

Oatmeal can also be fed to them raw, and dried corn is great for the winter months.

Although it has low nutritional value, it will help them pile on some weight to keep them warm during the cold snap.

Quick Note on Baby Chicks

Chickens pick up bits of grit and sand from the floor outside to aid them in the digestion process.

Before chicks are outside in the coop, they won’t be able to do this, so you should restrict their food to chick starter while they’re in the brooder.

Or if you do want to give them other food, including treats, then provide them with a small dish of sand or a chuck of parakeet grit.

Food Items to Avoid

While chickens may be famed to eat anything and everything, there is actually quite a lot of food that you should avoid giving them, and others that you should restrict.

If you do feed them items on this list, then you may see a reduction in the number of eggs they produce, or worse yet, run the risk of them getting sick.

The number one rule is not to give them any leftovers that have mold on them as mold is toxic to chickens.

While older food that no longer looks appealing to your family is fine, if it has any sign of mold on it, including strawberries, then it should be discarded.

Overall, the vast majority of your leftovers will be perfectly safe to feed your flock, but watch out for the following:

  • Moldy or rotten food is an absolute no go as we said. Over-ripe fruits and veggies are fine, but once it’s turned moldy, they shouldn’t be eating it.
  • You must avoid salty food, as much as possible. Some salt is okay, but heavily salted food can be deadly.
  • Avocado skins and pits should be avoided as they contain the toxin, persin. The fleshy part can be given to chickens in moderation.
  • Bones should be avoided, as should raw meat as it can carry parasites. Some also believe it can lead to cannibalism within the flock.
  • Raw potato skins
  • Processed food isn’t good for you or your birdy friends.
  • Dairy food such as milk and cream should be avoided since chickens can’t digest lactose.
  • Greasy food is challenging for chickens to digest and therefore should be avoided.
  • Green and sprouting potatoes are toxic to humans and birds due to the presence of solanine, which affects the nervous system.
  • Tomato, pepper, and eggplant leaves also contain solanine.
  • Grass clippings and weeds shouldn’t be given to your chickens as larger pieces can get stuck in their throats. They can eat these things, but it’s best to let them forage for themselves.
  • Pasta and bread are okay in smaller amounts.
  • Cookies and sweet treats are also good but should be restricted.
  • Chocolate should be avoided, as it contains theobromine which is toxic to all birds and many pets.
  • Citrus fruits should be avoided due to the acidity, and they may cause slower egg production or diarrhea
  • Garlic, chives, beans, and onions are okay, but they will affect the taste of the eggs.
  • Dry or uncooked beans should be avoided as they contain the toxin, hemagglutinin. Bad for birds and humans too, as it can cause red blood cells to clump together.
  • Raw eggs should be avoided since they might get a taste for them and start eating their own. You can feed them eggs as a protein source but make sure you cook them first

Winner, Winner, Chicken’s Dinner!

So, the answer to “Can chickens have strawberries?” is a resounding yes, but you should limit the amount you give them.

Your flock will enjoy most fruity snacks, but harder fruits should be cut into smaller pieces to make it easier for them to eat.

While chickens can be fed almost anything, it’s good to be aware of the food items that are toxic to them so that they don’t get sick or produce fewer eggs. Best Chicken Feeder to Prevent Waste

Moldy and rotten food is especially bad for your chooks, so be sure to clean out their coops regularly to get rid of any older food.

If your chicken gets diarrhea, then you should get it treated immediately; otherwise, you run the risk of losing it.

If you keep your chickens in a coop, as opposed to free-roaming backyard breeds, you can also forage around your garden for other tasty snacks.

Any bugs, worms, or slugs you find will be greatly appreciated by them, and make a great source of protein too!

Chickens Laying Eggs With No Shell: Why?

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Chickens Laying Eggs With No Shell – Have your hens ever laid soft-shelled eggs that got you worried?

A host of factors could be influencing this occurrence.

Chickens laying eggs with no shell or soft shells isn’t anything new.

In fact, the reasons behind it are easy enough to understand that you should be able to do something about the situation when it arises.

How to Classify Soft Chicken Eggs

Eggs that have underdeveloped outer layers are classified into categories based on the way these eggs appear.

There are soft shell eggs, shell-less eggs, rubber eggs, and partially-shelled eggs.

On some occasions, hens can lay eggs that have no shell at all.

In this case, you’re only able to see a membrane- and albumen-wrapped egg yolk.

In other cases, the results only turn out slightly better, with eggs appearing to have a shell, but one that can be cracked very easily.

Factors That Impact Eggshell Formation

A shell is formed to provide protection to the life growing inside an egg.

It’s a compact and sturdy layer that blocks dangerous pathogens and bacteria from invading the yolk.

In light of this, chicken embryos developing inside shell-less eggs are extremely vulnerable to outside elements.

There’s a good chance these eggs could be carrying a variety of bacteria and germs.

Defective shells aren’t all that bad, especially if you’re looking to use them for animal consumption.

Thin-shelled eggs, for example, are packed with protein and are a great food source for farmhouse pigs.

You’ll want to make sure, however, that the eggshells aren’t completely shattered before feeding them to the animals.

It is a possibility that soft-shelled eggs won’t happen very often.

However, to ease your worries, let’s take a look at all the elements that factor into raising chickens for their eggs.

Chicken’s Age

A young hen is more susceptible to laying a soft-shelled egg.

Older hens are unlikely to pose these kinds of problems as they’ve already gone through the biological process of laying eggs several times over.

In this case, you’re looking at an underdeveloped biological framework as a potential reason for why eggs are coming out soft in some hens.

Calcium Deficiency

A hen’s diet is another possible culprit for why she could have laid a soft-shelled egg.

Grower rations are usually fed to younger hens, while older hens receive layer rations.

Grower feed is also known to contain much less calcium compared to layer feed.

In Young Hens

Since calcium is critical to egg development, it follows that younger hens are much more likely to lay eggs that have underdeveloped or even non-existent shell layers.

Calcium supports the building of eggshells, which makes it a necessary nutrient for hens of all ages.

The moment you notice any hen in your flock laying soft-shelled eggs, quickly switch up its feed to a layer ration.

More often than not, giving your hens calcium-rich feed greatly decreases the possibility of them laying soft- or partially-formed eggs.

You’ll soon notice their eggs coming out fully developed and healthy.

If this still isn’t the case, you’re going to have to include calcium supplements in your hen’s diet.

Keep in mind that feed containing a good amount of calcium might still not be able to yield eggs with fully-developed eggshells.

This is when you have to accept the fact that younger hens just don’t have the physical structure to support eggshell formation.

When young hens take in calcium, they end up applying the nutrient to other parts of their system.

In Older Hens

As soon as they grow older, however, their bodies will realize that more calcium needs to be allocated for the production of eggs.

Older hens are perfectly suited for egg-laying because even when they don’t have enough calcium in their diet, they’re able to draw the nutrient from some other part of their body.

There is only going to be a problem if the hen’s bones are weak—a sign that it lacks calcium.

Addressing Calcium Deficiency in Hens

If you’re looking for calcium supplements for hens that are about to go on full lay, strongly consider incorporating toasted eggshells and oyster shells into their diet.

While you’re at it, you’ll also want to make sure the rest of your flock is fed the right way.

Get more information on how to accomplish this by checking out the best chicken feed options for your flock in the market.

Calcium deficiency is not going to be the worst thing that happens to your precious hens.

Rest assured that if this is their only problem, you have a variety of scientifically proven ways to address it quickly and efficiently.

Chickens Under Stress

Now, stress is definitely a killer; it may not kill your chickens outright, but it will ruin their egg-laying capabilities to a certain degree.

You’ll notice immediately if a hen is stressed out if it’s not as active as it usually is and doesn’t feed as much.

Their soft-shelled eggs will also be a sign that they’re probably not feeling as well as you think.

The problematic issue of stress can arise from several factors, which include the changing seasons and the type of environment your flock is living in.

Heat can potentially be devastating for your chickens, especially in the absence of cover and lack of water access.

You’ll need to make sure your flock has regular access to shaded areas throughout the day to keep them cool, and a regular supply of water to keep them hydrated.

Of course, you also have to accept the fact that weather changes are beyond your control.

You may not have been able to stop the changes in the weather and temperature from taking a toll on your hens and causing them to lay underdeveloped eggs, but you did do your part to ensure they survived.

At the end of the day, nothing else is going to matter as much.

Moving on, let’s take a closer look at the different stress factors that influence the kind of shells a hen’s eggs end up having:

Environmental Stress

The living conditions of your flock can greatly impact their stress levels.

One instance is when chickens have to live with a multitude of other chickens, sometimes other animals, and compete for shade, food, water, and other necessities they need to survive.

It’s far from being an ideal scenario and is something that is almost always guaranteed to cause stress.

These less-than-ideal conditions could negatively impact some chickens more than others.

Chicks and sick chickens could possibly end up dying, and hens in full lay may end up laying eggs that are underdeveloped.

There are regions that require keepers to regulate the size of their coop so that the chickens are able to grow and live a healthy life.

In these areas, failing to raise your chickens the right way could get you in trouble with the law.

Having a large number of chickens packed in a small coop is unhealthy, not just for the chickens but also for those raising them.

Imagine how fast bacteria and diseases could spread in this kind of scenario.

Chickens tend to get stressed from mating too much, which is exactly what happens when they’re all packed together, so make sure your flock has just enough space to roam around.

Furthermore, you’ll also need to implement a healthy rooster-to-hen ratio so that your hen’s ovaries don’t get stressed out from the frequent mating.

chickens laying eggs with no shell
chickens laying eggs with no shell

Heat Stress

Now, this one is the real killer.

Not only is the stress caused by the sun’s relentless burning heat something for you to worry about when raising chickens for their eggs, but it’s also a serious threat to your chickens’ health and well-being.

Hot weather conditions can lead to the production of underdeveloped eggs, usually thin-shelled eggs or eggs without any form of shell covering.

You’ll notice a big difference in how eggshells turn out when you compare batches laid during the warmer months with those laid during the colder months.

Reproduction during the winter season generally leads to healthier batches of eggs.

Chickens on the receiving end of the sun’s heat are definitely going to feel its full intensity.

If they aren’t able to seek cover under the shade during these moments, they could potentially end up getting harmed or even dying.

This is, again, why we stress the importance of having a coop that has enough areas under the shade for all the fowls.

Additionally, there must be enough clean water sources inside the coop to help the chickens combat the very worst of the summer heat.

The amount of heat absorbed by hens will impact their laying abilities.

Their lack of cooling mechanism means you have to put double effort into making sure they’re well-fed and properly hydrated during the hotter months, as well as able to seek refuge from a number of shaded areas inside their coop.

Juicy treats, such as mealworms, can help take a bit of the edge off the heat and offer some much-needed hydration.

Calcium supplements are especially ideal during this time when your chickens need physical and reproductive support the most.

Stress From Diseases

There’s no questioning the fragility of chickens.

As strong as these animals appear, they’re immune systems are going to cave when subjected to the most damaging conditions.

In these instances, ailments start to develop and make an impact on your fowl’s health.

When hens lay soft or partially-formed eggs, they could be suffering from a viral or bacterial infection.

You don’t want to wait out these issues and hope for the best because as determined and strong-willed as chickens are, they don’t exactly have the greatest immune system.

Ailments and chicken disease that are affecting your fowls could very easily thrive and spread, infecting some of the other members of the flock.

When neglected, such issues can get even worse and maybe even end up killing the entire flock.

In the event of severe (and we say severe because even the flu can be fatal to a chicken) health problems, make sure to take your chicken to the vet immediately.

Proper diagnoses and treatments are needed for chickens exhibiting symptoms of illnesses.

In most cases, once your hens recover from their ailments, they should start laying normal and healthy eggs again.

Why Are Chickens Laying Eggs With No Shell

There are times when, no matter what you do, there’ll still be that one stray egg that isn’t perfect.

The eggshell is either too soft, not completely formed, or totally nonexistent.

There’s just no explanation for it, and it’s something that you have to accept.

This is, in a way, nature telling you that you will never have full control.

As long as you are doing the right thing, you shouldn’t have too much to worry about.

You just need to be wise and cover all the bases.

Take care of your flock the right way by regularly providing clean water sources, nutrient-rich feed, enough shaded areas, and calcium supplements.

Also, make it a point to partner with an experienced veterinarian who can provide quality consultation for all kinds of issues concerning flock raising.

This individual should have sufficient knowledge on how to address problems regarding eggshell formation.

Chickens Laying Eggs With No Shell

Is there really a way to ensure that 100 percent of the chicken eggs from your flock will turn out healthy with fully-formed shells?

No, there isn’t.

Plus, if we really wanted to find out, then it would take more than analyzing a group of chickens laying eggs with no shell, or an entire batch of soft-shelled eggs, to discover the answer.

Again, this is science telling you that you have to surrender to it.

At the end of the day, there is really only so much you can do as an ordinary chicken keeper.

Best Chicken Egg Incubators

However, when you do all the things you’re supposed to do the right way, you’re very likely to end up happy with not just the quality of eggs your flock’s hens produce but also with your flock’s general health and behavior.

When you gather as much information as you can from verified sources and learn from your experiences, you should be able to garner results that not only make you feel like a successful chicken keeper but a great human being, as well.

How Long Can Chickens Go Without Water

how long can chickens go without water

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How Long Can Chickens Go Without Water?

Like all living things, chickens need water to survive.

However, the answer to how long can chickens go without water usually depends on the kind of chicken we’re talking about.

Other factors related to fowl behavior are also taken into consideration, like laying eggs, molting, and growing feathers.

Temperature levels factor into the equation, as well.

How Long Can Chickens Go Without Water?

Generally, if the climate is just right and isn’t too warm, healthy chickens are able to survive a full 48 hours without water.

If you factor in heat or warm conditions, then that’s going to be another story.

Chickens kept in regions where the heat can really do a number on them won’t last more than eight hours without proper water supply.

Lack of Water Access for Hens

Chickens that don’t have access to water normally experience shock.

For instance, hens that are in full lay might stop laying for an entire fortnight if they’re left without any water.

Lack of water can leave a chicken with a dried-out crop that is no longer able to moisten food, which, consequently, halts its digestive process.

A full day without water can be a nightmare for chickens, particularly for hens who need to be hydrated to lay eggs.

These animals will start to struggle or become completely incapable of regulating their body temperature and would need to seek shelter from the heat.

Whether or not they find cover, however, their suffering will continue.

Freezing Temperatures

Ice thaws, so water is going to be everywhere, right?

Yes, ice, indeed, melts, but not for a long time, or sometimes never where other regions are concerned.

In any case, you’re going to find that cold conditions are just as bad as hot temperatures in terms of how they can impact water access for chickens.

The survival rate is slightly higher for chickens in the snowy regions.

When healthy, these animals can go for more than two days without water, eating the snow that’s trapping them inside their coop out of their fierce desperation to survive.

Keep in mind, however, that snow isn’t good for chickens in the long run.

During the cold months, cockerels, as well as hens that have taken a break from egg-laying, don’t struggle as much with lack of water.

The former, because it doesn’t lay eggs and, the latter, because it’s in its resting phase and doesn’t require as much energy.

This is also true for chickens that have already gone through the molting process and have regrown their feathers.

Best Chicken Water Heaters

Baby Chicks

Chicks are as fragile as they come, and, for them, even a few hours without water can be a death sentence.

Make sure your baby chicks don’t go without water for more than six hours.

Since chicks are normally placed in a warm environment by their brooder, they need regular access to water for cooling as well as their normal biological processes.

These younglings do not have the immune system or the reserves of adults, which is why they need to take in smaller amounts of water more frequently.

Newly hatched chicks, on the other hand, will get all the nutrition they need for the next three days from their yolk.

Once the 72 hours are up, however, the baby chicks are going to need water a lot.

How Much Water Do Chickens Need?

Chickens kept indoors are known to consume around 180 ml to 250 ml of water on a daily basis, which means flocks that are kept outdoors could easily drink twice as much.

With that said, consider providing as much as 500 ml of water per chicken each day.

Broilers or meat chickens have a faster growth rate that contributes to their higher water consumption.

For each of these chickens, make sure to leave at least one liter of water on a regular day.

Since we’re discussing a lot about chicken types, make it a point to educate yourself on the best chicken breeds for rural living or your backyard.

Useful and detailed information about each breed should help you learn more about how to take care of chickens better.

Why Do Chickens Need Water?

We all know that chickens need water to survive, but what exactly do they need it for?

Here’s a breakdown of a chicken’s activities and functions that would not be possible without water:

Drinking

The role of water in this particular activity leaves no room for doubt.

Chickens, like most animals, need water to hydrate and infuse their bodies with the energy that allows them to engage in a variety of daily activities—from mating and laying eggs to running around and flying.

Plus, let’s not forget the necessity of water for seasonal processes like molting.

Everything a chicken does throughout its life requires the energy and nutrients provided by feed and a regular supply of clean water.

Digestion

Water is especially crucial in the digestive process as it moistens the food stored in the chicken’s crop.

Without regular water access, a chicken won’t be able to get enough water into its crop, causing it to dry and, ultimately, stopping digestion.

You can probably imagine how bad this is for your fowl.

Waste Removal

Waste is easier to eject when it’s moist.

Chickens rely on water to soften up those hard feed as well as foreign materials that manage to make their way into the animal’s digestive system.

Chickens aren’t exactly known to be picky eaters and are likely to consume anything that can fit into their beaks.

Water helps ensure that whatever these animals eat, they’ll be able to get out of their system easily.

Temperature Regulation

Water helps chickens regulate their body temperature, keeping them cool, active, and healthy even when it’s extra warm outside.

Without regular access to water, chickens are unable to rely on this function and will either need to stay under the shade constantly or wait until it’s cool enough to venture out into the open.

Either way, this situation is going to result in a lot of suffering for these animals.

Egg Formation

We’re always emphasizing the importance of regular water access for hens that are in full lay, and egg formation is the reason why.

Did you know that chicken eggs are made up of 70% water?

Lack of a regular supply of water during the egg-laying phase is not only going to be really bad for the hens, but it’s also going to do a number on their eggs, affecting their development and even leaving the life inside vulnerable.

What You Should Do for Chickens That Don’t Have Access to Water

how long can chickens go without water
how long can chickens go without water

If you notice that your flock of chickens was left without water, provide them with a clean supply right away.

Chickens should always be given water before they feed.

If they’re provided feed first, they’re not going to have enough water in their crops to moisten food.

Furthermore, this could also lead to crop problems, which could impact a chicken’s health in the long run.

It always helps to provide chickens with feed that has already been moistened.

A few soaked grains should get things going and do wonders for your chicken’s digestive system.

Can Chickens Go an Entire Night Without Water?

Like humans, who can go eight hours to half a day without water, chickens are all good going an entire night without water.

Keepers don’t usually keep water in the coop overnight as it tends to dampen the environment and lead to rat problems.

With how health-sensitive chickens are, you can’t give vermin any opportunity to infect their surroundings with bacteria or, worse, feed on the chicks.

As far as your flock is concerned, you just need to make sure that water is readily available in their coop, as well as on the pasture.

Do Chickens Need Water Daily?

Yes, you need to give your chickens water on a daily basis.

During the summer, keepers should provide their flocks with water twice a day.

Furthermore, if you’re raising chickens in really warm regions, then you may have to give them clean water as much as four times per day.

Cleanliness is paramount when giving your chickens water.

For the most part, these animals are vulnerable and can easily fall prey to a variety of ailments.

Also, health problems, like the flu, can be deadly to your fowl.

Providing your roosters and hens with the cleanest water around goes a long way to boosting their immune system and keeping those germs and bacteria at bay.

Rainwater is an acceptable water supply for your pets, but you must store it in a dark lidded barrel until it’s needed.

A big part of caring for your chickens is providing them a sufficient amount of water every day.

In a lot of places, if you fail to do this, you could get in real trouble with the law.

Tips for Watering Chickens

Water is as important to chickens as it is to humans and every other organism.

You know this and, therefore, do your very best to provide your chickens with a clean supply of water every single day.

Then again, you have to ask yourself: is the water really clean?

Water can appear clean to the naked eye but still be filled with bacteria and other microorganisms that are harmful to chickens.

Included in our tips for providing water to your fouls is making sure the pipes and waterers are clean.

Here are the others:

1. Use Elevated Water Containers

When chickens scratch themselves, they end up spraying dirt and tiny debris everywhere.

These materials can end up negatively affecting the quality of their drinking water.

To address this issue, you can place the water containers in a slightly elevated area that’s just enough for the chickens to reach.

In this way, they can comfortably drink from their water vessels without getting any dirt in the water.

2. Provide Two or More Water Sources

If you have a bigger flock, a single water source won’t be enough to hydrate all your chickens.

Some of them will either end up with barely any water or no water at all, which is something you want to keep from happening.

Additionally, keepers will also need to work double-time to refill a single water source.

One chicken can consume as much as 500 ml of water, so that would mean countless refills in a single day, particularly during warm weather.

3. Keep Water in the Shade

Searing temperatures can heat up the water in those containers like nobody’s business, rendering it almost undrinkable.

Also, water that’s kept for hours under the sun is going to evaporate quicker, emptying containers faster and leaving your chickens with nothing to help quench their thirst.

Water containers should be kept in the shade to keep these problems from arising and doubling your workload.

4. Hide Water Containers From Other Animals

Keepers will want to keep water containers hidden from other animals so that their chickens won’t run out of water.

Situate those water vessels in areas that are away from the line of sight of wild birds and other pesky critters that also get thirsty.

Keep in mind that broilers alone can consume as much as one liter of water a day because of their high growth rate, so you’re going to want to keep the water supply in the coop exclusively for your flock.

5. Splash Some Apple Cider at Least Once a Week

We already know that water has several proven benefits for chickens, one of them being an aid for digestion.

However, since chickens are notorious for gobbling up anything they can fit inside their beaks, including tiny hard objects, you’ll want to take the digestion process up a notch every week or so.

On the days you decide to do this, add a bit of apple cider vinegar into the water sources.

Apple cider not only helps improve digestion, but it also enhances the detoxification process.

Every once in a while, your chickens could use a bit of apple cider in their systems.

Final Thoughts: The Best Waterers for Chickens

A vacuum-sealed galvanized drinker can do wonders for your chickens; it also keeps you from dwelling on the question: how long can chickens go without water?

Why?

Because you no longer have to worry about your flock running out of water.

Get about five or six of these water vessels to help provide your chickens with a nearly everlasting water source.

These receptacles are awesome, simple, easy to fill, and effortless to clean.

You’ll also want to keep them on a level surface so that the water inside them doesn’t drain away.

Backyard Chickens: Watering Systems and Ideas

Ameraucana Chicken: Understanding the Breed For Your Homestead

Ameraucana Chicken

Creating a homestead can be a difficult process if you’re not sure what type of livestock can help sustain your rural lifestyle. One of the most beneficial is to invest in is the Ameraucana chicken.

This unique chicken breed is fairly new and only made its first appearance in the early 1970s.

While it may not seem like an ideal breed to keep in your backyard, you’ll be surprised by its uses.

The Ameraucana breed of chicken is known for being ideal for rural areas due to its skittish nature.

It doesn’t do well in suburban areas and is susceptible to stress when placed with other livestock.

This sounds like a downside, but when living isolated, the chicken produces many different resources that become valuable.

Many people enjoy the Ameraucana breed because of its puffy and comical cheeks, while others love the chicken’s disposition.

The chicken’s personality aside, they are very bright and curious birds that make amazing pets.

Lastly, they work well in multiple climates and are very versatile.

Let us learn more about the Ameraucana breed to help you understand if it’s right for you or not.

History of the Ameraucana Chicken

The Ameraucana breed of chicken was first bred using a type of blue- or green-tinted egg-laying chicken called the Araucana, so the Ameraucana is commonly confused with the Araucana breed.

The Araucana is a popular chicken breed from South America and has slight defects that cut down its life expectancy.

On that note, the Ameraucana chickens were bred in the USA in the early 1970s to help remove a genetic defect that the Araucana suffered from, which was an ear tuft that could heighten the death rate of baby chicks.

After a decade of breeding, the Ameraucana was recognized as a breed of its own.

As of 1984, the American Poultry Association recognizes the Ameraucana as a standard breed.

They also have included eight different color variations of the species and noted their different characteristics.

More of the Ameraucana breed survived birth and were able to live healthy lives.

This produced a healthy chicken that could still produce high-quality eggs, plumage, and meat.

Additionally, their temperament was less aggressive and friendly.

Ameraucana Chicken Characteristics

Let us now look at how this breed looks, behaves, and more.

This way, you’ll understand its needs, as well as how you can take care and breed it.

Ameraucana Chicken
Ameraucana Chicken

What does a Ameraucana Chicken Look Like

The Ameraucana breed has a few notable appearances.

It is one of the most versatile chickens when it comes to looks.

It can have up to eight different colors, which makes it hard to describe.

Nonetheless, we will do our best to give you the overall appearances that are notable to them.

Each chicken includes its unique palettes, which are a mixture of black, white, blue, and brown.

This allows each chicken to be unique and have stunning colors and looks.

Either way, they are beautiful and eye-catching to keep on your property.

With their thick feathers, they are considered a winter hardy bird, which allows them to survive in a multitude of different climates.

Their beard and muffs are often puffy and give them a distinct silly chipmunk-like face. 

Other characteristics include deep red eyes that look sharp and intimidating, while their puffy cheeks and skittish personality make them less scary.

Weight-wise, females range from five to four pounds, while males can be as heavy as up to seven pounds.

Where as the Bantam Chickens are miniature chickens breed.

Ameraucana Disposition and Behavior

As for the chicken’s disposition, the Ameraucana is very friendly but can be easily scared away but quick movements and loud sounds.

They are often found in flocks chattering with each other, and you won’t find some of them having problems interacting with one another or humans.

Do note, though, that they don’t do well with other farm animals, so it’s best to keep them in a secluded area where they can roam around freely.

This will keep them happy and stress-free.

Additionally, they may enjoy having you around them, but aren’t as friendly as other breeds and don’t want to be touched or petted.

Other dispositions known to breeders are that not only is the Ameraucana’s appearance variable, but also its personality.

They show a wide variety of behaviors which makes certain traits hard to pinpoint at times.

This is likely due to the breed’s upbringing and genetic differences between the standards.

Males do tend to be a bit more aggressive and territorial, while the females generally do well with each other but need to be given their personal space.

With their large frame, these chickens should be kept in large cages, providing plenty of space width-wise.

This can help prevent their stress levels and skittishness from spiking.

Ameraucana Egg Laying Habits

The eggs that the Ameraucana hens lay are either white or light blue.

This breed can produce up to three to four eggs every seven days, so they are ideal for egg production.

The eggs themselves are medium in size and can either be used for food or as starter eggs. 

Some owners begin to worry as the breed doesn’t produce eggs until 18 to 20 weeks, or around five to seven months.

Compared to other breeds, this is later in the game, but they end up producing more at a quicker rate.

Plus, the eggs they produce are of higher quality.

There was a rumor going around that Ameraucana eggs were more nutritious than others, but that theory was debunked later as a marketing ploy.

The eggs contain the same nutritional content as other eggs. 

Lastly, the Ameraucana is a non-brody breed, which means you will need to invest in an incubator.

This can help assist you in keeping the starter eggs alive and producing more chickens.

If you aren’t focused on producing more chickens, though, then you can skip this step.

Sex Linkage

As mentioned, the Ameraucana breed of chicken originated from the Araucana chicken, which was originally from Chile.

Over the years, they have produced genetic differences, as the Ameraucana has been bred to have thicker feathers, do well in multiple climates, and have less recessive genetics. 

Many people tend to confuse it with the Easter Egger chicken due to the similarities in looks and production of slightly blue eggs.

That said, they have completely different origins, and the Easter Egger is not recognized as a breed.

The Ameraucana has only existed since the 1970s and only were recognized as their own standard back in the 1980s.

Ameraucana Health Issues

As with any chicken breeds, the Ameraucana is fairly healthy and doesn’t pose any large health risks for its breed.

It doesn’t have any known genetic deficiencies that may cause long term illnesses or diseases.

The species is known for being one of the healthiest that has been brought over to America. 

The expected lifespan of an Ameraucana breed is approximately seven to eight years if kept healthy.

Of course, the chicken is still prone to common chicken diseases, parasites, and other small issues if not kept in a good environment.

The only issue is their skittish disposition, which only gets worse if they are not kept in a safe environment.

Here’s a good video that showcases a typical Ameraucana chicken:

Are Ameraucana Chickens Right for Your Homestead?

If you’re looking for a family-friendly chicken, then you may want to skip on this breed.

It doesn’t do well due to its docile nature, and while it can be people-friendly, it prefers to be alone.

Additionally, the chicken has bigger bodies than most other chickens and needs to have adequate space.

The breed is accustomed to cold climates but must be kept in a draft proof coop otherwise, they may get sick.

They do enjoy their coop, but they will also benefit from being able to roam around.

If you’re looking for a few beautiful blue-tinted eggs every week, then this breed will be ideal.

Other people like using their eggs for selling as starter sets.

The only issue is that they don’t produce enough eggs annually for a supermarket.

Lastly, the male version of this breed tends to get aggressive at times.

They should be separated and have their own space.

The females aren’t too aggressive, but they can get irritated with each other at times.

If you have the money and space, it’s best to give this breed plenty of space for the flock and to roam around.

As a homestead chicken, they can be pretty useful if you’re only planning to support yourself.

If you want to branch out, we recommend getting other types of chickens.

Other breeds will give you better egg production and be able to support your family while also being able to brood the eggs themselves.

Ameraucana Chickens – A Breed Apart

The Ameraucana is considered to be one of the rarest breeds in the USA.

While they generally do well in most climates, their origins are from South America so they would benefit more from a similar environment.

If you’re looking for a steady way to support you or your family with their meat, eggs, and plumage, then these will suffice.

If you’re looking to start a farm or have a larger production, we recommend skipping this breed. Delaware Chicken

Looking at their overall cost, they can be worth the investment as long as you understand that they won’t start producing eggs until almost six months after they are born.

Delaware Chicken: The Dying Breed You Should Consider Raising

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The Delaware chicken breed is one of the fastest-growing of the popular heritage chicken breeds.

One of the best ways to be self-sufficient in rural areas is to produce your own food, and many homesteads benefit from the addition of Delaware chicken.

It is known for being a stunning hen that produces brown eggs which are perfect for breeding and consumption.

Additionally, its calm demeanor and friendly temperament make it ideal for beginners.

Due to its thick feathered body, it is also suitable for cooler climates.

The only issue is that it is a dying breed.

Similar to the Cornish cross, the Delaware breed soon became overpopulated, but fortunately, it is slowly coming back into trend due to homestead construction and backyard flocks.

If you plan on taking care or breeding chickens, today, we will give you a detailed breakdown of the breed.

This will help you understand if it can fit your rural lifestyle or not.

Delaware Chicken Breed’s History

As the name may suggest, this chicken breed originated from Delaware in the USA.

The breed started in the early 1940s by a man named George Ellis.

He raised this chicken breed for the sole purpose of providing single comb brown eggs.

He mixed the chickens with the Rhode Island Red breed, and this resulted in a higher grade of meat and eggs.

The chicken was not originally named the “Delaware”, but Indian Rivers and was changed sooner to Ohio Beauty.

This was due to its growing popularity in Ohio.

In the year 1952, it finally changed to represent its origins.

For production, the chicken breed has been a favorite because its plumage produced both white and black feathers.

This later was found to be even more amazing because its appearance remained slightly even when plucked.

Likewise, the chicken’s rapid growth ensured that there was a steady flow of both plumage and eggs, as well as showed a great capability to provide a meat source.

With growing popularity, the Delaware breed became useful for many different activities.

The chicken’s quick production speeds and healthy appearance made it ideal for use in the competitive broiler industry.

However, they were outclassed by other standards such as the Cornish Rock Cross nearly 20 years later.

In 1952, this chicken breed was finally admitted into the American Poultry Association.

It is the only variety of the white and black spotted chicken breeds, as well as a breed that features bearings on its hackles.

Sadly, the Delaware breed is not commonly bred unless on small farms, which means there are no other standards from their breed.

As such, as of 2009, the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy Company included them in the list of dying chicken breeds.

Delaware Chicken Characteristics

Let us look at the different things you would expect from a Delaware breed of chicken.

This way, you will understand their needs and usefulness.

Delaware Chicken Appearance and Traits

The Delaware breed of chicken is a medium-sized bird characterized by its white and black plumage.

The feather color is a mixture between either white or silver, and the tails and wings contain a few black barrings.

The chicken has a broad and deep body, which is perfect for colder climates.

Other characteristics prominent to the Delaware breed are the deep red comb, wattles, and earlobes.

Additionally, the combs are larger than other chicken breeds.

Their eyes range from a deep reddish bay color all the way to a golden brown. Lastly, their beaks are a deep red with their skin and legs being bright yellow.

Compared to other chicken breeds like the Cornish Hen, they are very similar in build and weight.

Generally, males weigh between seven and eight pounds and feature a stocky build.

On the other hand, females are approximately six pounds and feature a slightly smaller stature.

Delaware Chickens Disposition and Behavior

As for their disposition, Delaware Chickens breed is known to be calm, friendly, and intelligent.

Although one of the chicken breed’s major behavior is being quiet, they do enjoy chatting with one another from time to time.

Other prominent traits include being assertive towards others at times.

While they generally get along in a flock, sometimes they may be irritated with one another.

That said, the Delaware breed is less assertive than other chicken breeds such as the Rhode Island Reds.

Many of the Delawares enjoy being around others and benefit from a rich environment.

Their keen sense of curiosity makes them ideal for small homesteads or backyard farms.

Their favorite activities are pecking around in the dirt and observing or aiding humans around them in daily tasks.

Their thick feathered body makes them ideal for colder climates, but they may also enjoy the sun if they have shade to rest in.

Their interaction with humans is always positive, and they can even befriend their owners.

Many of them enjoy interacting with humans, which includes cuddling, petting, and resting on their laps.

They are very loving creatures and are some of the most friendly chickens you will find.

That being said, they aren’t always ideal for those looking for maximum production and profits.

They are ideal for a small homestead but shouldn’t be bred for industrial use.

Delaware Chicken Egg Laying Habits

The Delaware breed can produce up to four large brown eggs every seven days.

However, they are not interested in brooding, which can make it difficult for some of the eggs to hatch on time.

So, investing in an incubator and learning how to hatch chickens on your own will help ensure that the eggs are properly fertilized and brooded.

If you’re not planning on using the eggs to produce more hens, then you can easily skip the incubator, but still, we highly recommend to keep the incubator.

That is because it will provide you free hens and a stable flow of both meat, plumage, and eggs.

Delaware Breed Sex Linkage

As mentioned, the Delaware breed was originally bred from a mixture of both the New Hampshire and Barred Rock chicken breeds.

With their genetic similarities, you can produce Delaware chicken with several other breeds easily.

Many times we see farmers breed the Delaware breed with other sex-linked baby chicks.

The best combination of the Delaware rooster is, of course, the New Hampshire Red or the Rhode Island Red hen.

They can also be mixed by using a New Hampshire Red or Rhode Island Red rooster and mate it with a Delaware hen to get red sex-linked baby chicks.

Delaware Chicken Health Issues

The Delaware breed is generally a healthy chicken, but it may be susceptible to parasites.

The only other major issue breeders are aware of is that their combs are huge, which results in them being sensitive to cold weather.

While the breed itself does well in the cold, their comb can easily be damaged.

To avoid this, many breeders tend to place petroleum jelly on their combs, which helps prevent frostbite and lubricate the combs and keep them warm.

Other than that, there are no known issues with the Delaware breed.

You can check out the video below if you’d like to see a live Delaware chicken.

Are Delaware Chickens Right for Your Homestead?

If you’re building a backyard flock or want a small addition to your homestead, the Delaware breed can be a good pick.

They are often recommended for small suburban homesteads that have a wide-open range since it helps promote a healthy mindset and also is good for plentiful egg production.

With the chicken’s temperament, they enjoy being around other animals, flock members, and humans.

They love to chatter amongst themselves and are very lively and social.

Putting them into an isolated area can cause them great distress, so if you’re planning on getting a few, you must get a small flock.

Besides that, they are good around children and other humans.

However, they benefit the most from being able to roam freely around your homestead.

In rural living, you should have plenty of open space, but we recommend them only in places with fences.

The Delaware chicken also loves being in a rich soil environment that provides them plenty of bugs.

They enjoy the chase and nutrition provided by worms, bugs, and other small critters.

Additionally, they prefer gardened areas where they have the chance to come into contact with multiple plant species.

Lastly, they are perfect for beginners or those wanting to expand their homesteads.

The only downside we’re aware of is that they will need to be supervised on how they mate, especially if you want them to reproduce.

If you’re not aiming for high-quality birds, though, then you can easily skip this step.

Delaware Chicken Breed

While the Delaware chicken may be a dying breed, we find that many homesteads can benefit from its production.

Small farms, other individual families, or those looking to build a successful homestead will enjoy their egg production.

Due to their genetics, they also mature quickly, which means quicker egg production and reproduction. 

As long as you have the drive to expand your rural life, these chickens are your best bet.

They include plumage, eggs, meat, and can even help with keeping the soil fertile.

Either way, you’ll find that they are a unique and fascinating chicken breed.