With the holiday season just around the corner, pretty much everyone has started thinking about what to get their loved ones this year. We’ve thought long and hard about the best Christmas wishlist and realised there has never been a better time for chicken-keeping than now! There are so many reasons we can think of, so we compiled a list of the best ones:
1. Chickens are great for EGGS:
Hens reliably produce eggs from 4-6 months of age depending on breed and time of year. Just 2-3 hens can supply all the eggs an average-sized family could sensibly eat in a week. If you want to keep more, it’s usually very easy to sell any excess eggs. Eggs from your garden are so much fresher than those from a shop and they taste better too!
2. Chickens are great for your PHYSICAL HEALTH:
Eggs are an excellent source of protein, all 9 amino acids, useful vitamins and minerals. They can be eaten in a myriad of ways and are simple to use. Here’s a list of our favourite egg-based recipes.
Not only that but, caring for chickens encourages you to be more active and get outdoors more! And our coops are guaranteed to increase the enjoyment of chicken keeping thanks to their modular design, making it super easy to be taken apart and be deep cleaned with a quick hose-down.
3. Chickens are great for your MENTAL HEALTH:
Chickens’ needs are minimal, but they do like routine. If you are someone who would benefit from the perfect reason to get up and get organised every day, get some hens! They LOVE mornings and are great at being consistently pleased to see you. They get super excited when you bring treats.
And the great news is that you don’t have to worry about a thing when you’re away on holiday! Our Automatic Door Opener works with any vertical sliding door and can be set with a timer or a light sensor, allowing you to put your birds to bed or let them out in the morning with the push of a button. Talk about peace of mind!
4. Chickens are great for KIDS:
Chicken rearing and keeping provides excellent learning opportunities, especially if you buy chicks or hatch your own. Before you embark on any plans, you must decide what you'll do with any cockerels. Regardless of your age, finding fresh eggs never gets dull - it’s like a bit of magic every day!
5. Chickens are great as PETS:
Chickens don't need walking and they eat considerably less than dogs and cats. It costs around £1 per hen, per week for best quality soya free layers pellets. They are easy to keep [link to blog post “why chickens make great pets”] and put themselves to bed at night. If locking them up and letting them out is tricky, just invest in an automatic opener and closer!
6. Chickens are great for the ENVIRONMENT:
As a source of animal-based protein, eggs are the most environmentally friendly. Ensure the feed you provide is free from GM and soya. Look into sprouting your own grains or growing seeds and beans for even greater sustainability. Composted chicken manure and bedding makes an incredibly useful addition to the compost bin and eventually the garden too.
7. Chickens are great for VARIETY:
Hens come in a HUGE variety of colours, shapes and sizes. Large hybrids are the best layers but bantams are incredibly cute and cause less damage to your lawn! Egg colour differs too and is dependent on breed NOT feed. You can get every shade of brown plus white, cream, blue, olive green, pinks and plums... amazing!
8. Chickens are great for your CONSCIENCE:
Hens would never naturally live in flocks as they do in commercial settings. Mentally and physically these birds pay a price. By keeping your OWN chickens, you can provide more natural flock sizes, better quality feed and a more stimulating environment. Remember, for every hen you keep, that's one LESS in a large scale farm.
9. Chickens are great ENTERTAINMENT:
If you think chickens are stupid, think again! They have a surprising level of intellect, problem solving skills, flock hierarchy, communication methods and vocalisations. You can happily spend hours a day watching their antics and relationships with their peers. If you work from home they are a wonderful source of entertainment and if you've got a spare minute you could always pop out and give one a cuddle! Did you know we do cameras that work off with your WIFI? Cameras that give you a live-stream of EXACTLY what's happening in the coop? Day or Night? Well WE DO!...and they are brilliant....and you'll never need to bother with normal tv again!
10. Chickens are great for SELF SUFFICIENCY:
For most of us, owning chickens represents the first and possibly the only step we're able to make in keeping animals for food. They are a natural progression from fruit and vegetable production. It's important to be realistic about the space your chosen breed needs. Some people manage to keep poultry on their allotments but the vast majority keep hens in their gardens.
And to make it all the more easier for you to get started on the wonderful journey of chicken keeping, we will be sending out one of the best selling books about everything related to chickens as a free Christmas gift to all those who place an order on one of our coops between the 5th and 24th of December!
Check out our range of recycled plastic chicken coops for up to 15 chickens.