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.
- 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.
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.
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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