Raising a flock can cost a large chunk of change if you’re not careful. At the same time, raising chickens can have a huge positive impact on your overall quality of living if you utilize the perks. Chickens can be used for food, for companionship, and as a learning experience. If you’re looking to raise chickens on a budget, there’s a few things you can do to keep your cost to a minimal:
Build your own chicken coop. The biggest expense when raising a flock can be caused from your chicken coop. Many chicken coops can be in the hundreds to thousands of dollars depending on the size, location, and features included. Rather than pay for the convenience of a built coop, build one yourself. Purchasing a chicken coop plan is a fraction of the cost, and you can customize to your liking.
Purchase supplies locally. When you purchase your food or supplies online you’re paying the marked up cost for convenience in addition to a shipping and handling cost. If you find a deal that’s hard to pass up online, keep in mind that when you purchase online returning the item is difficult. In addition, you will not have the opportunity to inspect the item before purchasing.
Raise your own chickens. Adults chickens can cost more money depending on the breed. You also have no say in how the flock was raised or what they were fed before coming to you. By raising your flock from eggs or as chicks you now have the ability to monitor what they consume, how they are treated, and how much you spend to do so.
Free range your flock. Over time the purchase of food can drive up the cost of caring for chickens. Rather than keeping your flock strictly on a feed diet, allow your flock to free range as well. Provide your flock with a clean and safe area for them to free range. Your chickens will get much needed vitamins and minerals from eating free range in addition to saving you plenty of money.
Make your own food. Save even more money feeding your flock by making your own feed for the flock. By making your own feed you’ll be saving money and you’ll know exactly what your flock will be eating, with no added fillers or preservatives.
Keep your flock healthy. If one chicken gets sick you risk your entire flock growing ill, which can then cause you to lose lots of money in vet fees or lost profit. Through proper nutrition and shelter you’ll be providing your flock with the opportunity to have a long and healthy life. If you’re raising your flock for food you’ll want to make sure your flock receives the best nutrition to ensure you receive the best quality food as well.
by Suzie from localharvest.org
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