Keeping Chickens – What they Need to Survive and Thrive
Ancestrally, chicken are jungle birds. They are survivors living in trees and are good at
adapting to outdoor conditions. Taking good care of chickens then is easy provided that the chicken raiser give
them what they need to survive and thrive. The needs of chickens are few and simple.
• The first among the basics for raising chickens is a housing that is clean and secured from predators.
Chickens are a good prey for foxes to badgers and for cats to rats. The chicken house then should be secured that
every possible entry point of predators are closed and barred.
• Build a chicken house that is elevated from the ground. This will keep them away from damp and diseases. While
chickens are sturdy birds, they are prawn to bacteria and diseases, many of which come from the damp ground.
• The chicken house should also be made of materials sturdy enough to withstand different weather conditions and
it should have ample ventilation.
• Provide enough space for chickens. Chicken could be irritable creatures when the mood strikes them and that
could be just about anything. When they are, quarrels will start. When blood is drawn, the blood will strike the
fancy of other chickens in the henhouse will start pecking at the bloodied chicken sometimes to death. A chicken
house is already cramped when there is less than three square feet of space per chicken.
• Likewise, the nest box should not be designed to accommodate more than four chickens. Two chickens per nest
box are good.
• Chicken runs should be secured and fenced around with the base of the fence buried at least 10" into the
ground while the height should be at least five feet.
Food and Water
• Chickens could live on yesterday's water but when the water has droppings it has to be cleaned. A steady
supply of clean water is essential if the chickens are to be healthy. Vitamins and minerals could also be
introduced into the water to boost the chicken's immunity from diseases.
• There are two basic types, the corn, and the pellets. Corn feed is mixed with other seeds and the seed mixed
to the corn does not differ much from one manufacturer to the other. The other type is pellets. Pellets have three
categories. First is the starter mash or layer mash, the second is the crumbled pellets that are recommended for
feeding the pullets and the third is the pellets. There is no difference in composition and nutrients present. The
difference only lies in the manner of fineness and coarseness of the feed.
• Chicken eats most food and it is good to let them roam around for variety. Chickens should also be fed grits,
as they would need this for digestion to prevent having a sour crop.
These are the basics that the chicken will need to survive and thrive. There are other minor issues like disease
prevention, selecting the breed, laws and regulations, but for chicken keeping, these are the things that come