The true cost of backyard eggs!

chicks4kids

Songster
10 Years
Apr 22, 2009
2,681
17
229
Northern Indiana
Well my coop ran me about $100 (7x12) including waterers. I used alot of recycled everything and made my feeders from misc. stuff around the house and ended up making 5 gallon waterers as well. The purchased feeders and waterers were bases (for chicks) and I used canning jars to hold the feed and water. By the end of summer, I was averaging 72+ eggs a week on 14 that were laying, (had some molting and some too young to lay-27 chickens all together) and we were eating "breakfast dinners" at least once a week, and for some snacks my kids would beg their dad to make an omelette. We go through about a 50 lb. bag of feed at no more than $12 each about every 3 to 4 weeks. That's free ranging during the day--however, I'm curious to see what happens once there really is no grass and bugs about.

Also, with the daylight hours changing and the cold weather, we are down to roughly 18 eggs a week. Although we don't sell our eggs, we always find ways to use them, be it hard boiled, omelettes, egg salad sandwiches, fried, whatever, we always make up the cost when we can use those eggs for dinner once a week and for breakfast at least twice, and lunch as well....not to include all of the baking I do around here.

I think the best thing to do is to try to be as frugal as possible, recycle whatever you can, and know that no matter what your coop looks like, or what your neighbors think, you are providing the most healthy food to your family....whether it be an egg, or a chicken.

You know what you've fed those girls...no questions. If you think it's too expensive, maybe there are still some changes you can make to make your chickens more self-sufficient, yet still healthy and happy.
 

FisherMOM

Songster
11 Years
May 7, 2008
2,140
12
203
Bergen, NY
I figure that the price it costs me to feed my chickens a month was about the price of feeding my Golden Retriever when she was alive.
BUT.. I get back from the chickens... I get eggs. I loved my dog with all of my heart, but she couldn't make me breakfast!
 

Tala

Flock Mistress
10 Years
Apr 14, 2009
6,372
48
251
Benton (Saline County) AR
Quote:My hubby agreed to get chickens because they are "useful pets" --- they do give back for the feed that they eat, unlike our dog & cats.

I credit the cats for our lack of rodents, but that just isn't enough for DH (he doesn't really like cats much)

Now if only I could convince him of the usefulness of goats
(I think he'll let me get some if we move to a bigger place)
 

ReiMiraa

Songster
10 Years
Dec 2, 2009
1,035
7
151
Leavenworth the "German Town"
the costs for me were just feed and 8 chicks... i had gotten the coop and 6 chickens free.... correction 2 coops 1 large 1 small....

but i did spend 100 on cheap roofing... 4 ply and some metal roofs (3x12)....
 

cook_kaka_ook

Songster
10 Years
Oct 29, 2009
378
4
119
My hens are almost 19 weeks old. Hopefully they will be laying eggs in a couple of weeks or so. I have lost count of the amount of money I have spent so far for building the coop, the run plus... the feeds. But just the anticipation of collecting the very first egg and then actually achieve it will be priceless for me.
 

AZKat

Songster
10 Years
Apr 7, 2009
668
19
153
As of right now, we've spent about $300 and haven't gotten any eggs. But roughly 1/3 of that is the coop, run, and feeders, which is pretty much a one time expense. Our chickens are all hatchery stock, but they are also heritage breeds, so they should have a fairly long productive life. I figure its like a lot of things, the start up cost is fairly high, but the longer you do it, the cheaper it gets.
 

FisherMOM

Songster
11 Years
May 7, 2008
2,140
12
203
Bergen, NY
The best perk.. is that once your girls are laying eggs... you NEVER have that dilemma again "oh poo, I can't make that, I'm out of eggs!"
 

DAFox

Songster
10 Years
Nov 7, 2009
381
13
111
SW MO in Vernon Co
I don't think about the actual cost of getting and keeping chickens. I figure somewhere along the line I will break even, at least. Coops and fencing can be amoritized over their expected lifetime, maybe 15 - 20 years. My LF free range, so, they give me eggs, eat bugs and fertilize my yard. I am switchng my yard slowly to clover, so they will. also, be my lawn mowers almost 100 per cent of the time. My Silkies are next to my garden as are my ducks. This year, I plan on turning both their areas into orchard. They've been fertilizing and contolling pests for me in there this past year. These birds will continue to surround my garden to keep crawly things from getting in. In late Fall, Winter and early Spring, it is my hope to allow them into the garden to do the same tasks. This year though, I have a Mamma hen and 5 chicks in there. I dump chicken litter in my garden, too, as compost. So, to accurately figure cost, I'd have to figure in fertilizer and some sort of environmentally sound pesticide products. Plus eventually, gas and wear and tear on a lawn mower.
Priceless entertainment value!
And I have to think about all the expensive vacations I'm not taking because I don't want to leave them that long! They are saving me lots of money!


Dale-Ann
 

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