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Calum explains how to care for chickens at home

April 21, 2024

As spring blossoms and the days grow longer, many chicken keepers in Stirlingshire are gearing up to provide the best care for their feathered friends. Whether you’re a seasoned poultry enthusiast or just starting out with a flock of your own, it’s essential to ensure that your chickens receive the proper care and attention they need to thrive. In this article, our Vet and exotics enthusiast Calum will explore some key aspects of caring for backyard hens during the spring months and beyond.

Why not share our article with other local backyard hen keepers and smallholdings by email or on social media?

Contact us for more chicken care tips

How to help your chickens thrive

Housing and Shelter

Calum advises that the first step is to ensure your chickens have a safe and secure coop to call home. The coop should provide protection from predators, as well as shelter from the elements. Spring is a great time to give the coop a thorough cleaning, removing any accumulated debris or bedding and checking for signs of wear and tear. Provide ample bedding, such as straw or wood shavings, to keep your hens comfortable and dry.

Feeding and Nutrition

A balanced diet is crucial for the health and wellbeing of your chickens. During the spring months, hens may benefit from a diet that includes a higher protein content to support egg production. Calum recommends offering a combination of commercial poultry feed and fresh fruits, vegetables and grains to provide essential nutrients and variety in their diet. Additionally, you should ensure that your chickens have access to clean, fresh water at all times.

Egg Care

With the arrival of spring, you can expect an increase in egg production from your hens. Calum recommends collecting eggs regularly to prevent them from becoming soiled or cracked, which can attract pests and lead to spoilage. Eggs should be stored in a cool, dry place (ideally in the refrigerator during warmer periods) to help maintain their freshness and quality.

Health and Wellness

Keep a close eye on your chickens’ health during the spring months, as they may be more susceptible to certain health issues, such as respiratory infections or parasites. Calum advises that you should check your hens regularly for signs of illness or injury, including lethargy, changes in appetite, abnormal droppings, or feather loss. If you notice any concerns, get in touch with our team at Apex Vets to arrange proper diagnosis and treatment.

Environmental Enrichment

Chickens are naturally curious and active creatures that thrive on mental and physical stimulation. Calum recommends providing opportunities for your hens to engage in natural behaviours, such as scratching, pecking, and dust bathing. Plus, you may want to consider adding enrichment items to the coop, such as perches, branches, or hanging treats, to keep your chickens entertained and stimulated.

By following our tips, you can ensure that your backyard hens receive the care and attention they need to flourish. Share our advice with other chicken keepers in your community to help promote the health and wellbeing of backyard flocks everywhere.

Contact us for more chicken care tips

And remember to share our article to help other chicken keepers!

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