The Case For The Backyard Chicken

I wanted to bring the subject of chickens and eggs to the table today. 100 years ago chickens were grown by almost every household, city and country alike. The urban homesteading movement is on the rise along with backyard chickens. So many families are realizing backyard chickens are easy to keep and provide much healthier eggs. I want to show that today.

Backyard chickens

Backyard Chickens:

  • Provide healthy fresh eggs
  • Eat kitchen Scraps
  • Eat bugs and garden pests
  • Help compost and build up soil with nutrients
  • Easy to start keeping
  • Much cheaper than other pets
  • Love eating weeds

Store bought eggs often look like this. They have yellow yolks and the birds which lay them are often kept in small cages inside buildings. Fed entirely grain diets. Supplemented with antibiotics and hormones to keep them producing.

Strore egg

However a backyard chicken will have a very different lifestyle, diet and nutrition to its eggs. Most backyard bird keepers, us included, let our birds live more naturally. They can forage in your yard, digging and scratching for bugs, weeds, anything really. They love kitchen scraps. Baked goods, old fruits and veggies, potato/ carrot peels, weeds…. I MEAN WEEDS!! they annoy us but nourish a chicken which in turn feeds us, amazing really! Food from what we normally hate! The nutritional analysis of chickens raised like this is much different and a cracked egg will even look different. The yolks are much darker an orange really, not yellow. This shows the health of the chicken and the nutritional density of the egg.

Farm fresh

Nutritional difference for homegrown eggs

  • 1⁄3 less cholesterol
  • 1⁄4 less saturated fat
  •  2⁄3 more vitamin A
  •  2 times more omega-3 fatty acids
  •  3 times more vitamin E
  •  7 times more beta carotene

* nutrition data from a Mother Earth News article.

Knowing what we know now I wish I had started keeping chickens years earlier. Almost every household, short of those in apartments, can keep chickens to provide their own eggs. If everyone was to do this one thing, the impact would be huge. Commercial egg production would change, unethical practices would go out of business.  Not nearly as many trucks would be needed for hauling eggs. Families would become closer to the food production and understanding how food is produced. Your food would become more local, the way it used to be. The nutrition going in everyone’s bodies would be much better, and isn’t that what we all want! If you are not already consider keeping backyard chickens. There are tons of ways of housing them for little to no money. We will show you our home-made chicken coop from scrap wood in a future post. We want to encourage you, if we can keep chickens, you can too!♡♡♡

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  • […] Eggs are considered staple grocery items, and some people don’t eat them at all. Many people don’t like the commercial egg industry. and I for one don’t blame them, what they do to chickens for the purpose of cheap eggs is unthinkable. However, we learned chickens and eggs are the easiest thing to learn! We started with 5 chickens and two ducks in our back yard in town. We were actually breaking the city law as 6 birds was the limit! However no one ever came to count. That was more than enough to keep us in eggs, and we always let our birds free-range in the yard during the day and lock them up in the coop at night for safety. Chickens are so much fun, my kids love them and they truly are part of our family! We feed them greenhouse and garden scraps as well as kitchen scraps. Most cities now days will allow people to have 6-10 chickens or birds. Check out our post here for more on chickens. […]

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