Keeping poultry is my hobby and gives me great pleasure as well as the added bonus of fresh eggs on a daily basis. However looking after poultry, like any livestock or pets for that matter, takes time, effort and commitment.
Things to consider before keeping poultry.
- Do you have time to feed, water and egg collect daily?
- Are you at home enough so that the hens can free range?
- Can you provide the hens with a regular routine?
- Do you have enough space to house a hut and possibly a run for when you are not able to free range the birds?
- Do you have enough space for the hens to free range?
- Is the fencing or boundaries around your house and garden secure enough so that the birds will not escape?
- Do you have pets that might not mix well with the hens?
- Are you allowed to keep poultry where you live as some house deeds state that the keeping of livestock is not permitted?
- If you have neighbours close by, what will they think?
- Will the noise level be ok since cockerels and guinea fowl are prone to making alot of noise?
- Can you get reliable help for times when you are away or poorly?
- Do you know how much it costs to keep the birds and can you afford it?
When you have considered all of these questions and you feel happy that you can provide the right amount of time, effort and commitment needed to keep happy and healthy poultry then you are nearly ready. There are just a few more questions to consider.
- Do you know enough about the basics of hen keeping?
- Are you fully prepared for the arrival of the birds?
- How many birds should you keep?
- Which type of birds do you want to keep?
- Where do you get the poultry from?
- Do you have the correct equipment – feeders and drinkers?
- Is the housing the correct size for the number of birds?
- Where can you get the poultry feed from?
- Will your local vet provide veterinary care for sick or injured poultry?
You must make sure that you understand the basics of poultry keeping and that you have fully prepared for the arrival of your birds. Remember, do your homework and be a fully prepared poultry keeper!