backyard chickens roaming in grass

Benefits of Having Backyard Chickens

Whether you live in suburbia or the countryside, chickens are one of the best barnyard animals you can raise in a relatively small space. Overall, they are also very easy to care for, with minimum requirements of a safe coop, food, and water to be happy and healthy.

If your neighborhood is zoned for chickens, consider adding some to your household to enjoy the advantages that come with them. Here are some of the benefits of having backyard chickens and the basics to get you started. When you’re ready, give your chickens the best fuel.

Browse Organic Chicken Feed

Why Backyard Chicken Raising?

Many people get backyard chickens for, you guessed it, eggs! Although this may be the initial reason, owners soon discover various other benefits of having chickens. Here’s a quick roundup of why you should start a backyard chicken flock:

  1. Egg production, usually every day
  2. Peace of mind that eggs are humanely sourced
  3. Cost savings
  4. Free fertilizer and pest control
  5. Food wastage reduction
  6. Social interaction and fun

The next section will unpack these benefits in more detail.


What Are Some of the Benefits of Raising Backyard Chickens?

There are several advantages of having your own chickens right in your backyard.

1. Sustainable Egg Production at Home

One of the best — and tastiest — benefits of having backyard chickens is that you’ll be able to enjoy fresh eggs! Instead of getting your eggs from large factory farms, you’ll be able to see exactly where your food is coming from and know those eggs came from happy birds. Another bonus? You can sell any extras you collect at a farmers market.

2. Nature’s Best Pest Controllers in Your Yard

Chickens are omnivores, so they’ll help reduce the insect population in your backyard. Chickens regularly scratch around and consume bothersome bugs like ants, ticks, spiders and grubs. They’ll also gobble down common plant-destroying insects like beetles and grasshoppers, helping keep your backyard free from pests.

3. Waste Reduction Warriors to Handle Scraps

While their entire diet can’t be made up of kitchen waste or snacks, you can feed your chickens your extra food scraps. Up to about 10% of your chickens’ diet can be your leftovers, making them a great way of recycling your food and reducing waste.

4. Free Black Gold Fertilizer for Your Garden

Chicken manure is a great source of nitrogen-rich fertilizer. Because it does contain so much nitrogen, you will have to either mix it in with organic materials like leaves or put it into your compost pile to break down before you spread it in your garden.

This nutrient-dense fertilizer, or “black gold,” will eventually turn into nitrates, helping nourish flowers or other plants.

Providing Entertainment and Education

One of the most enjoyable aspects of raising backyard chickens is that they’ll provide you with endless hours of fun. You and your family will get to watch how your flock interacts with each other, making these helpful birds both entertaining and educational. Kids especially will get a better understanding of farming practices and how food gets from the “farm” — or your backyard — to the table.


What You Need to Know About Backyard Chickens

Most owners invest in chickens for easy and cost-effective access to eggs. Many industrial farms in the U.S. sell eggs from factory operations that may not offer their hens the best living conditions. Having your own happy, healthy chickens producing eggs for your family is a kinder alternative.

If you’re thinking of starting a flock, you likely have questions. The following answers will set you off on the right path.

1. How Cost-Effective Are Backyard Chickens?

Backyard chickens are highly cost-effective. Building a coop and run are one-time expenses, as is buying your chicks. You then just have to buy your hens quality organic pellets or layer crumbles so they produce the best eggs.

Egg production aside, backyard chickens will help you save on pest control and fertilizer costs.

2. What Do Chickens Eat?

Chickens eat kitchen scraps, making them great composters and waste reducers. And with these barnyard birds being omnivores, they eat anything from feed to insects and other bits of meat.

Chickens are what they eat, so if you want healthy eggs, ensure you have healthy hens by managing what they peck. Give them quality snacks and feed to keep them feeling and laying their best.

3. How Do You Get Started?

Backyard chickens deliver various benefits, from saving you money to allowing your family to interact with these social birds. Before racing out to get a coop full of chicks, though, check with local officials to ask whether you can keep chickens in your backyard.

Certain municipalities limit the number of chickens you are allowed to keep, and some regions outright ban these barnyard birds. Also, check regulations around roosters — many cities bar them due to the noise of their spirited morning cock-a-doodle-doos.


Ensure the Health and Well-Being of Your Backyard Flock

Once you have the municipal stamp of approval, you’ll need to get your chickens a secure henhouse or coop where they can safely lay eggs. You’ll also need to build a run where your chicks can peck and roam without predators getting to them.

Remember that each hen will need about 4 square feet of space in the coop and the same amount in the run. With chickens being such social animals, you’ll need about six hens for a happy flock. That means you’ll require approximately 24 square feet of coop space and an equal-sized run. You can make DIY henhouses and runs or buy ready-made coops.

Experts suggest that each coop should have one nesting box for every three chickens. You can use items like old milk crates and plastic tubs, or buy a wooden box from the feed store.

What About Daily Care?

Chickens need at least a 1/4 cup of quality feed per day and access to fresh drinking water. Ensure that the coops and runs are clean — tidy up at least every two weeks — and monitor their temperatures. Typically, chickens can withstand both hot and cold temperatures when they have adequate shelter. The seasons do, however, impact their laying patterns.


Raise a Healthy Backyard Flock With Nature’s Best Organic Feeds

As the leading certified organic feed manufacturer in the U.S., Nature’s Best Organic Feeds provides the premium ingredients you need to raise a healthy, happy backyard flock. Our chicken feed, which is formulated by nutrition experts, is regularly tested to ensure optimal quality.

We make it easy for you to find Non-GMO Project-Verified, non-medicated and organic feeds in bagged and bulk quantities. Use our store locator tool to find our feed in a store near you.

Find Our FeedContact Us Today