Dinkum Guide: How to Get Chickens for Your Homestead

If you’re thinking about raising chickens in your backyard, you’ve come to the right place. This comprehensive guide will walk you through the process of acquiring your own flock of chickens for your homestead.

One option for acquiring chickens is to buy them online. By doing so, you can choose from a variety of breeds and ages that suit your needs. This is also a convenient option because the chickens will be shipped directly to you, which saves time and effort.

Another option is to check with local farmers or pet stores to see if they have chickens available. This is a great way to support your community while getting to know the people selling the chickens.

Once you have acquired your chickens, it’s important to know how to properly care for them. From feeding and watering to protecting them from predators and maintaining good hygiene in the coop, we’ll cover everything you need to know about raising backyard chickens.

So, let’s get started on this dinkum guide to getting chickens for your homestead!

Choosing the Right Chicken Breeds for Beginners

When it comes to raising backyard chickens, selecting the right breed is crucial for ensuring a successful experience. As a beginner, you want to choose a breed that is known for being easy to care for and suitable for a backyard environment. Here are a few chicken breeds for beginners:

Plymouth Rock

  • Known for being friendly and easy to handle
  • Hardy and adaptable to different environments
  • Excellent egg-laying abilities


  • Docile nature makes them great for families with children
  • Tolerate cold weather well
  • Known for being good mothers and protective of their eggs


  • Adaptable to different living situations, from small backyards to large farms
  • Excellent egg-laying abilities and produce large brown eggs
  • Friendly and easy to handle

Remember, while selecting the right breed is important, ultimately, the success of your backyard chickens depends on how well you care for them. Make sure to research and understand the specific needs of your chosen breed to ensure a happy and healthy flock.

Setting Up the Perfect Chicken Coop

When it comes to raising backyard chickens, a well-designed chicken coop is crucial for their safety and health. Here are some essential steps to setting up the perfect chicken coop:

Determine the Size

The size of your coop will depend on the number of chickens you plan to keep. As a general rule, each chicken needs at least 3-4 square feet of indoor space and 8-10 square feet of outdoor space. However, more space is always better to avoid overcrowding and potential health issues.

Ensure Proper Ventilation

A well-ventilated coop is essential to prevent respiratory problems in your chickens. Make sure there are plenty of openings in the coop for fresh air to circulate, and consider installing windows with wire mesh for added ventilation.

Add Nesting Boxes

Provide your chickens with comfortable and secure nesting boxes for laying eggs. Each box should be at least 12 inches square and filled with soft bedding material such as straw or wood shavings.

Install Roosting Bars

Roosting bars should be installed so that your chickens have a place to perch at night. This will help keep them safe and comfortable while they sleep. The bars should be at least 2-3 feet off the ground and positioned higher than the nesting boxes.

Choose the Right Location

Select a location for your coop that is well-protected from predators and adverse weather conditions. It should also be easily accessible for cleaning and maintenance.

Provide Food and Water

Make sure to provide your chickens with plenty of clean water and access to quality chicken feed. Consider using a feeder and waterer that can be easily refilled and cleaned.

With these steps in mind, you can set up the perfect chicken coop for your backyard flock. Keep in mind that regular cleaning and maintenance is essential to ensure the health and happiness of your chickens.

Caring for Your Chickens: Tips and Advice

Caring for your backyard chickens may seem like a daunting task, but with a little bit of effort, it can be a rewarding and enjoyable experience.

Feeding and Watering Your Chickens

To keep your chickens healthy, it’s important to provide them with a balanced diet and plenty of clean water. A commercial feed formulated for chickens is a great option, but you can also supplement their diet with kitchen scraps, fruits, and vegetables.

Make sure your chickens always have access to fresh water. This will help keep them hydrated and improve their overall health.

Protecting Your Chickens from Predators

Unfortunately, backyard chickens are at risk of being attacked by predators such as raccoons, foxes, and coyotes. To protect your chickens, it’s important to invest in a sturdy coop with a secure locking mechanism and strong fencing around their outdoor area.

You can also use motion-activated lights and sound devices to scare away predators. Additionally, make sure to keep your chicken feed stored inside a secure container to prevent attracting unwanted visitors.

Maintaining Good Hygiene in the Coop

Cleanliness is key when it comes to raising healthy chickens. Regularly cleaning and disinfecting the coop, replacing bedding, and removing droppings will help keep your chickens healthy and free from disease.

A well-ventilated coop will also help prevent the buildup of moisture, which can lead to respiratory problems in chickens.

Other Chicken Care Tips

  • Provide plenty of space for your chickens to move around and exercise.
  • Regularly inspect your chickens for signs of illness or injury.
  • Trim their nails and beaks if necessary.
  • During cold weather, provide supplemental heat as needed.

By following these chicken care tips, you’ll be well on your way to raising happy, healthy chickens for years to come.

Raising Chickens for Eggs: Everything You Need to Know

If you’re interested in having a constant supply of fresh, organic eggs, raising chickens for eggs is a great option. Here’s everything you need to know to get started:

Egg-Laying Breeds

If you want chickens specifically for egg production, choose breeds known for laying consistently. Some popular egg-laying breeds include Leghorns, Ameraucanas, and Rhode Island Reds.

Feeding for Optimal Egg Production

For optimal egg production, give your chickens a balanced diet of quality chicken feed. You can also supplement their diet with fresh fruits and veggies, as well as calcium-rich items like oyster shells to promote healthy eggshell formation.

Collecting and Storing Eggs

Collect eggs at least once a day to ensure they stay fresh. Store them in a cool, dry place, and clean them before use. If you have excess eggs, you can also consider selling them or giving them to friends and family.

Organic Chicken Farming

If you want to raise chickens for eggs using organic methods, avoid using synthetic pesticides or antibiotics. Instead, provide a clean and healthy environment for your chickens to thrive in, and use natural pest control methods like diatomaceous earth to manage pests.

Essential Backyard Chicken Supplies

Before bringing home your new feathered friends, it’s important to make sure you have all the necessary supplies to keep them happy and healthy. Here are some essential backyard chicken supplies you’ll need:

1. Chicken Coop and Run

A good quality chicken coop and run will keep your chickens safe from predators and provide them with shelter from the elements. If you’re handy, you can build your own coop, or you can purchase one online. Make sure the coop is spacious enough for your chickens to move around comfortably, with enough room for nesting boxes and roosting bars.

2. Feeder and Waterer

Chickens need access to clean food and water at all times. Choose a feeder and waterer that are appropriate for the number of chickens you have. You can find a variety of feeders and waterers online or at your local farm store.

3. Bedding Material

Bedding material is used to line the floor of the chicken coop and provide insulation and absorbency. Popular options include straw, wood shavings, and shredded paper.

4. Chicken Feed

Quality chicken feed is a must for healthy chickens. You can find chicken feed online or at your local farm store. Choose a feed that is appropriate for the age and breed of your chickens.

5. Grit and Oyster Shell

Grit and oyster shell are important supplements that provide calcium and aid in digestion. Grit is necessary for chickens to grind up their food in their gizzards, and oyster shell is needed to help build strong eggshells.

6. Heat Lamp

If you live in a colder climate, a heat lamp can be essential for keeping your chickens warm during the winter months. Make sure to place the heat lamp in a safe location where it cannot cause a fire or overheat the coop.

With these essential backyard chicken supplies, you’ll be well on your way to providing a comfortable and healthy home for your new feathered friends. Remember, you can find many of these supplies online if you’re unable to find them locally.

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