A dozen reasons to keep chooks.
I love a good egg pun.
At risk of stating the obvious, keeping your own chooks provides the household with eggs, guaranteed fresh, cruelty free, beautiful eggs. There is something wholesome and rewarding about collecting fresh eggs from the laying boxes. Perfect complete protein parcels for you to cook.
Chooks love food scraps. Rather than throw your scraps into landfill your chooks will love to scratch through your scraps, peelings and leftovers. Mine cluck with delight as I tip the scrap bin into the pen and race over to find all the juiciest morsels. Be aware chooks don’t like pumpkin, onion and banana peel. Keep them for the compost.
Chook manure makes great fertilizer. Shoveling it from the pen, which in itself is great exercise, chook poo will make your herbs, vegies and flowers grow and bloom to the envy of all those devoid of this bountiful product. As well as manure itself, you can make liquid fertilizer. My father taught me how to half fill a hessian bag with manure, suspend it into a drum of water, like a tea bag and the water will create a fertile liquid tonic for your plants.
With backyard chickens you can reduce the amount of pesticides and chemical needed to kill bugs. The chooks will do that for you, especially if you let them out of the run and rummage through your garden.
Chooks are peaceful and fun to watch. It is relaxing to watch them wander about the pen or yard. Their behaviour reminds me of more simple pleasures. As above shovelling chook poo is also great physical therapy. Some nursing homes have a small pen with a few chooks as theraphy. As they are always moving around, pecking and socializing they are calming and provide some pleasenat memories for many of our older folk.
Chook teach children, young and old about social issues such as pecking orders, being clucky, raising and protecting young and working for a living.
Also fun to learn what their different noises mean. There is a vast difference in the noise make when it finds a bug to eat to the one she makes after laying an egg.
Chooks are a great low maintenance pet that teach children caregiving responsibility. Children can easily help feed the chooks, help check and provide fresh water and love collecting the eggs.
Minimal Pet sitting
While great pets, chooks can be left alone, with minimal pet sitting required. With food and water set ups we can leave our chooks alone for the weekend, although Bindi’s first task when we get home is to rush to her post
I kid you not. Chooks are a great conversation starter. You can also join crazy chook people groups and they make a great Facebook brag.
Entertain your other pets
Now this depends on your pets. I own the most beautiful dog in the world. Bindi. She is an Australian Shephard and by nature loves to protect and her flock. Without exaggeration Bindi spends hours at the chook pen. I have had to reinforce the wire where she butts her nose up against it. She is very dedicated!
If you have enough chooks you can sell surplus eggs. I am no expert on this because my adult children make mean work of any potential excess I would ever collect! They deliver empty cartons to me so of course being the nurturer I am they get a carton full in return. When all 3 of my children lived far from me (worse years of my life) I noticed the excess in eggs build up within weeks. I did however become popular at work giving them away.
Keeping chooks is a great hobby. A hobby is any activity or interest we pursue for pleasure or relaxation outside of our occupation. My chooks are certainly an activity that provides my family and I much entertainment.