ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

10 Great Things About Keeping Chickens

Updated on July 12, 2020
Gabriel Wilson profile image

Gabriel enjoys keeping chickens and has had chickens for years.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Little Sleeping ChickChickens in a FieldRoosterChickens Young RoostersBack Yard ChickensA Young ChickenSunday BrunchEgg Salad for LunchEgg Topping
Little Sleeping Chick
Little Sleeping Chick | Source
Chickens in a Field
Chickens in a Field | Source
Rooster | Source
Chickens | Source
Young Roosters
Young Roosters | Source
Back Yard Chickens
Back Yard Chickens | Source
A Young Chicken
A Young Chicken | Source
Sunday Brunch
Sunday Brunch | Source
Egg Salad for Lunch
Egg Salad for Lunch | Source
Egg Topping
Egg Topping | Source

Meet Noddy, born Tuesday the 30th of June. He is a character already, sleeping the days away on an old cushion. His brothers and sisters (all 14 of them) are very energetic and it seems Noddy is not so busy as his siblings.

I have a small holding for many years now and one of the things I enjoy most is keeping chickens. At the moment I have three coops each coop has it's own garden area for the chickens to roam about. I have young chickens in one coop, laying chickens in another and a few old girls and one old boy in the last coop plus 15 hatchlings since June 30th in my back yard, one of wich is Noddy.

There are numerous reasons to keep chickens and because they don't need a huge amount of space unless of course you have a big flock you can easily keep 2 or 3 chickens in a your garden, of course do check the legalities in your area first. If your back garden is a shared terace area with 50 other families it's probably going to be an issue, but hey bring it up at the next AGM, you never know.

10 Great Things About Keeping Chickens

1. Fresh Eggs

There is no disputing that fresh hen eggs are the best eggs in the world. They taste better, the white is thicker, the yellow is deeper and the flavor is richer and sweeter. I am so spoiled with fresh eggs and the difference is so great that I only eat my own eggs. Poached eggs are my favorite breakfast and I love a cheese and onion frittata for supper.

2. Healthier Eggs

Free-range eggs are healthier being lower in cholesterol and higher in vitamins and richer in nutrients, the chickens being allowed to roam, eating greens and devouring bugs. I also believe it's down to happier and healthier birds enjoying the freedom of the great outdoors breathing in fresh air and soaking up the sunlight.

3. Knowing Your Food

With food products being distributed all over the world and fresh produce having goodness knows what sprayed on it to keep it fresh there is something very satisfying knowing where your food comes from not to mention beging so local. Eggs are so versatile and can be used in numerous ways, making cakes, pastry, pancakes, omelettes, salads, sandwich fillers etc...

4. Less bugs

This may not be good news for vegetarians but chickens love to eat bugs. They will spend the day scratching in the dirt scouring for bugs and worms. Here on Madeira they can enjoy the added dish of a daily lizard or two. The up side is the entertainment value of watching them pick, pluck and scratch.

5. Waste

Since owning chickens my food waste is almost nil. I have a chicken bucket and everything goes into it (except chicken of course). The shells from the eggs are crushed up for extra grit and all our leftover vegetables and fruit (mostly peelings), plus small amounts of bread, rice, pasta and such are given as a treat to the chickens. They love it.

My seven year old doing chicken yoga during the lock-down.

— 10 Great Things About Keeping Chickens
Chicken Yoga
Chicken Yoga | Source

6. Manure

Chicken manure is an amazing fertilizer. Plants, flowers, vegetables and young trees newly planted will be leaping out of the ground. Chicken manure is very high in nitrogen and is one of better manure types. I keep an open composte heap and use after about nine months to a year once the nitrogen is less corrosive.

7. Meat

Chickens get old and stop laying eggs somewhere between 2 and 3 years and then it's time for the pot. Old birds make good chicken stews and soups. A traditional Portuguese chicken soup called canja (not to be mistaken for ganja) is very popular at Christmas. We often gift our chickens to some of the locals at Christmas so they can make their favorite soup. We do have a few old birds that due to exceptional health have escaped the cooking pot. Our oldest cockerel is at least ten and three old hens are seven, one of which hatched a baby chicken months back which was a lovely surprise; the chick has grown into a rather dashing looking rooster called Henry who is a big softy.

8. Productive Pets

Chicken's make great pets and are very friendly. There is no need for walks, baths, or grooming. My chickens being outside most of the day also means the chicken coop requires very little cleaning and maintenance and chickens are fine left alone for a day or two if you want to go visiting just make sure you leave plenty of food and water.

9. Social

Having chickens is very social. Being outside and spending time in the fresh air is far better than being inside. Chickens like to be around you and are always looking to see if you have a treat and unlike a lot of birds they are very good with children. That's my seven year old doing yoga with our biggest breed of chicken, Orpethings. They are lovely creatures, friendly and gentle. They are old now but very healthy so they too are avoiding the cooking pot.

10. Sustainability

Keeping chickens is a huge step towards sustainability and being self sufficient. There is so much to gain from keeping chickens as listed but above all I think it is good for the soul.

I love this book as an introduction to keeping chickens. All the basics are covered including breeds, coops and beding and the author is very prudent about sustainability which of course is a big part of the future...

I highly reccommend this interesting, easy to read fun book about raising chickens...

In case you need one more great reason to keep chickens I thought I'd show you my breakfast: delicious poached eggs on homemade brown bread. Notice the rich colour of the egg yolk and the firmness of the egg white. Fresh eggs are essential to make perfectly poached eggs: runny egg yolk and firm egg white.

My Favorite Sunday Brunch...

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Poached Eggs and Avocado on Brown BreadPoached EggsPoached Eggs
Poached Eggs and Avocado on Brown Bread
Poached Eggs and Avocado on Brown Bread | Source
Poached Eggs
Poached Eggs | Source
Poached Eggs
Poached Eggs | Source

Would you like to keep chickens?

See results

© 2020 Gabriel Wilson


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)