Possible side gig of chicken consultant. Thoughts?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by AnneInTheBurbs, Apr 3, 2018.

  1. Yes, if the price was reasonable.

  2. No, I have the internet.

  3. Where were you when I needed you?!

  1. AnneInTheBurbs

    AnneInTheBurbs Crowing

    Sep 8, 2013
    Bucks County, Pa
    I am considering a side gig as a chicken consultant. Looking for some advice. DH makes a good living, and I want for nothing, but it would be nice to have some extra money for my hobby of poultry raising.

    I am have been raising chickens for about 4 years now, and I have l amassed a ton of knowledge, largely in thanks to everyone here at BYC! I already have friends who ask me questions all the time about different situations. When I went to our local Tractor Supply Farm store the other day, I bought some chicks (sorry honey :oops::love:). While I was waiting, I must have answered at least 6 questions from people about the chicks and chicken raising in general. ( My favorite: "What happens if I get a rooster?", a woman said out loud. My response "The you have dinner in a few months." Her husband smiled.) :lau

    While I live on the opposite coast, in Silicon Valley, there is a woman charging $225/hr for her services.


    "It’s not uncommon here to see chickens roaming in their owners’ homes or even roosting in bedrooms, often with diapers on, according to Leslie Citroen, 54, one of the Bay Area’s most sought after “chicken whisperers,” who does everything from selling upscale chickens and building coops to providing consultation to backyard bird owners. Her services cost $225 an hour. Want a coop and walk-in pen (known as a run)? You can expect to pay $4,000 to $5,000 for a standard setup.

    Citroen has had thousands of customers over the years, she said, giving her a front-row seat to the Bay Area’s growing obsession."

    I wouldn't even charge half that, but people are willing to pay, particularly when it is late at night and they think something could be wrong with their pet. Many backyard chicken raisers do consider their chickens as pets. As an aside, most vets will not see poultry.

    While the internet has a lot of data, sometimes it is better to have someone to walk you through certain situations. Any advice would be appreciated.
    syndie and BullChick like this.
  2. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Crossing the Road

    Mar 15, 2010
    On the MN prairie.
    I guess if you can find someone willing to pay for your advice, you might as well give it a shot. I would think it would carry some liability, though, if someone called you with a problem and you gave bad advice, causing the death of their beloved pet.
    lazy gardener and aart like this.
  3. rosemarythyme

    rosemarythyme Crowing

    Jul 3, 2016
    Pac NW
    My Coop
    I guess the question is, do you think there is a demand for such a service in your area? And are people in your area willing to pay for such things? If so, maybe you could make a few dollars on the side. I would caution against offering any medical advice however, as you're not a licensed vet.

    The closest thing I can think of in my area is a "beginner's chicken class" offered at my feed store for something like $20 or $25. Maybe you could look into doing something like that, which just offers general advice, breed advice, information about feed and housing, etc.
    aart, AnneInTheBurbs and syndie like this.
  4. The Moonshiner

    The Moonshiner Professional Chicken Tender

    Nov 17, 2016
    Honestly my first thought is that that's the most ridiculous thing I've heard in a while.
    Second thought is exactly what bobbi-j stated. If you're going to get paid for your advice you better make sure you know what you're talking about.
    After thinking for a minute I realize that some peoples ridiculous is another persons genius.
    I have noticed that it seems that the more money people have the more they're willing to spend it on what us with out a lot of money think is beyond foolish.
    RUNuts, aart, bobbi-j and 1 other person like this.
  5. Acre4Me

    Acre4Me Crowing

    Nov 12, 2017
    Western Ohio
    First, I wouldn't say that your fellow PA citizens will act like those in Silicon Valley with their money - very different places, where apparently in Silicon Valley even making 300K per year apparently does not allow one to buy a home nor barely afford rent according to several articles (true or not, I don't have first hand experience there).

    Second, there are ALWAYS people who spend their money on what seems silly, redundant, or excessive. You could likely find an audience, particularly if you can market to upper income people or have good size population to market.

    Third, steer away from medical advice as you are not a professional. However, it would seem that something along the lines of common ailments and the typical treatments available should be fine. ie: Mites - define problem then define the common solutions - the clients pick what would work for them if they found themselves with mites. Alternatively, you could charge them to clean their coop, dust their chickens, spray their coop or whatever to fix the mite problem perhaps (although could still be a problem if they feel you didn't do a good enough job but I guess that is the case with any business really).

    Holding info seminars at say local library or town rec building for a fee could be a good solution as another poster mentioned. People usually respond well to someone with enthusiasm for the subject.

    Personally, there is NO WAY I would pay even $100/hour for a chicken consultant, but I am a researcher by nature, so it would be a waste of my money. There are others that like not having to really deal with finding out the small details and would rather just be informed. But I could see paying a small fee for a good 2-3 hour seminar, especially if there were some hands on time (even if not actual birds, having the meds and or feeders, whatever, on hand for people to see and touch) on a subject I was interested in and was considering for the future.
  6. Acre4Me

    Acre4Me Crowing

    Nov 12, 2017
    Western Ohio
    LOL! I just realized I am suggesting that perhaps you could have a coop cleaning business! I'm laughing because this isn't too different from those who pay someone 1 or 2x per month to do a deep clean of their home (or at least the most used areas), or those that pay someone to clean their windows - especially the 2nd floor or higher windows (so much easier for someone else to do it even if only 1x per year), or having a lawn company come out 2-3 times per year to fertilize, spray weed killer, edge the driveway, whatever. Pretty low risk to hire someone to do this since coops aren't usually in the home.
  7. Stevo77

    Stevo77 Chirping

    Jan 30, 2018
    Corpus Christi, Tx.
    It's too late for April Fool's jokes.:clap
  8. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Crossing the Road

    Nov 7, 2012
    I have nothing to add.

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