Why have chickens?

guntha45

Chirping
Nov 16, 2020
52
245
60
Bethel, Maine
Great post, I do not eat as much meat anymore because of factory farms. No hubby to hunt with anymore , so at 81 I just eat less meat in general. My choice, but do grow a great deal of my food. Wish I could find a group to butcher chickens together. I would be willing to do that with others to help. Thanks for the common sense post.
Thank you, I wish you the very best :)
 

guntha45

Chirping
Nov 16, 2020
52
245
60
Bethel, Maine
Trusting people, requires faith and hope. These traits are just extremely hard to find in today’s self serving society! :old
Although I was raised in the 60's and 70's my family and rural lifestyle made it more like the 40's and 50's, the same values but with more conveniences. Growing up, a handshake was more binding than a legal contract. There were dishonest people but everyone knew who they were. I would rather hear what I don't like than to be told a lie because that's what they think I would want to hear! People have forgotten, or deny, that there will be a "reckoning", "if not in this life then in the next"...
 
Feb 2, 2017
16,691
97,667
1,327
San Joaquin Valley CA.
Although I was raised in the 60's and 70's my family and rural lifestyle made it more like the 40's and 50's, the same values but with more conveniences. Growing up, a handshake was more binding than a legal contract. There were dishonest people but everyone knew who they were. I would rather hear what I don't like than to be told a lie because that's what they think I would want to hear! People have forgotten, or deny, that there will be a "reckoning", "if not in this life then in the next"...
Exactly! You are allowed in my life now!
 

gtaus

Crowing
Mar 29, 2019
2,177
6,990
467
Northern Minnesota
My Coop
My Coop
I have had to take a pragmatic approach to having animals. I'm a softy on the inside and have been heartbroken before with the loss of pets, that's why I don't have any now. Although I truly care about my birds I go into it knowing that all of them will be gone one day, one way or another. My birds are a source of enjoyment, watching their silly antics, but they are also a source of eggs and meat(that's why I got them). It is the cycle of life. Although I don't enjoy doing it at all and it's emotionally difficult for me, I do my own butchering. No one should enjoy taking life. Whether it's hunting or butchering one should feel remorse in killing, but not so much that it keeps you from being able to do it while providing for yourself, family, and loved ones. While my birds are here I enjoy them, protect them, and take good care of them until it's time for them to go, one way or another.

Just joining this thread and have not read all the previous 74 posts, I'll just add my thoughts to your initial post.

There is nothing wrong with a pragmatic approach to having animals. I don't treat my small backyard flock as pets, but understand many people do. Chickens have relatively short lives, even if you let them live out their natural life until they die of old age. If you choose to harvest your birds, meat chickens will only be around 10 weeks old and dual purpose birds maybe 2-3 years.

In the past, I have done my own harvesting of my chickens. However, I am getting older and processing chickens by hand without a machine plucker is rather labor intensive. I found a processor somewhat nearby that will process chickens for about $3.00 per bird - wrapped for the freezer. That is another option. Currently, my thinking is that once the hens have reached the end of their egg laying production, I might just let them "retire" to a free range coop, where they can forage for most of their food during the day.

Why do I have chickens?
- Enjoy watching them out in the chicken run.
- They make lots of good compost for the garden.
- I get farm fresh high quality eggs every day.
- They are a source of meat, if I choose.
- They eat almost all our kitchen scraps reducing waste going to the dump.

Reasons not to have small backyard flock?
- Eggs are cheaper to buy at the big box store.
- Chicken meat at the store costs less than raising my own in the backyard.
- Requires daily care, even when -30F in our winter.
- Knowing that chickens have a short life, and I will have to deal with loss.
 

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