Pretty much everywhere I’ve been where I thought life is good, the people had chickens. It just makes sense on so many levels. You can get organic eggs, you can harvest meat, the chickens help make the land more fertile–and it doesn’t take a lot of space to do it.
A couple days ago I saw this piece on the recent surge of people raising backyard chickens, which is legal here in Sarasota county. People living even on very small lots can use chicken ‘tractors’ like the one pictured here. Tractors are basically inexpensive floor-less coops that you move from place to place around your yard. The chickens scratch at insects and worms, and their manure goes directly into the ground as organic fertilizer.
Here’s a great resource to find out what the laws are for having chickens in various places around the US. It’s surprising how many urban areas, such as Seattle, allow you to raise chickens. Here’s another good site that sells tractor kits (although they’d be super easy to build yourself if you have carpentry skills) as well as poultry supplies.
As we settle down in Patagonia this fall, we’re definitely thinking about having chickens. I’m tired of buying everything. I want Layla to grow up eating food that comes right from our land, food we raise ourselves.
Anyone raise / raised chickens in an urban environment or using a tractor? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.