Raising Chickens in the City

Filed Under: Home repair    by: ITC

Interested in raising chickens in your city home?  You’re not alone.  Increasingly, people are finding the benefits of raising their own chickens worth the small hassle and expenses involved.    Your two biggest hurdles will likely be researching city ordinances, followed quickly by figuring out how to construct your chicken coops.  Let’s start with an overview of the benefits of raising your own poultry:

  • Chickens are remarkably easy and inexpensive to take care of, especially as compared to traditional pets, like cats and dogs
  • You’ll have access to eggs that are always fresh, and you can set the nutrition levels.  It’s a fact that ree-range eggs have lower cholesterol, less saturated fat; and higher levels of vitamin E, vitamin A and the essential fatty acid omega 3.
  • Chickens are natural pest controllers, and also create a wonderful, natural fertilizer.
  • Chickens are more fun, and smarter than most people give them credit for

As mentioned in the opening paragraph, you should really start by researching the local ordinances and zoning restrictions for your city and county.  Unfortunately, many places have specific restrictions on where chickens can be raised, or sometimes, ambiguous restrictions where you’ll have to ask to be sure before you get started.  Your odds may not be as bad as you think though. In 2003, Mother Earth news performed a survey of 20 cities, and  found that just four of them wouldn’t allow chickens at all, while eight actually allowed an unlimited number.

Next up will be finding out where to buy chicken coops, or how to build them on your own.  We recommend building on your own, because as a new owner, you can use the time to familiarize yourself with some of the unique requirements of raising them.  This also ensures that you take your time on important issues, like where to get your chicks, how to care for them in the early stages of their life, and so forth.

Also, if you’re worried about disturbing your neighbors, don’t be.  The only kind of chicken that might pose an issue are the roosters.  Not everbody appreciates the early morning crowing.  And, raising eggs is actually easier without one, as your hens will lay unfertilized eggs, saving you the trouble of watching out for those that might develop into baby chicks.

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