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15 Chicken Keeping Mistakes to Avoid

In general chickens are pretty easy.  Even if you have no experience taking care of an animal a little reading can get you ready prepped for basic chicken care.  They are versatile and work in many different locations, from country, to city.

However, it is possible to make mistakes.  Here’s a list of chicken keeping mistakes that have been made either by me or my neighbors.   Hopefully you can avoid a few of these!

Are you guilty of these 15 chicken keeping mistakes? Get started on the right foot and make sure you don't commit the worst one of all.



15 Chicken Keeping Mistakes To Avoid

  • Bring them home before you finish their coop
  • Melt your brooder with your heating lamp

And the number one mistake of all…

Don’t learn from your mistakes.

Are Chickens Right For You?

Even if you do make mistakes, don’t let it scare you from raising chickens!

Justin Rhodes of Abundant Permaculture says, “Your worst backyard chicken mistake is till 10X better than the best conventional chicken operation”.

Want more information on raising chickens?  Check out our homestead resource page or buy our book Backyard Chickens: How To Have A Happy Flock!

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Friday 2nd of June 2017

We fortunately did not melt the brooder, caught pasty butt & saved a chick, did not have a coop built, but are pretty happy with our TSC coop. Another piece of advice I would offer would be to have medicine, or natural solutions ready to go, too. We had some comb nipping when the girls started laying and had to make a quick run for antibacterial spray.


Monday 5th of June 2017

Oh yes, that is a good idea!

Katy, SkipTheBag

Wednesday 27th of July 2016

We just got our first chickens. Thankfully we've avoided most of those...except checking for patsy butts--what is that?! I can't wait to blog about our first eggs, which should show up in the next couple of weeks!

Kathryn @ Farming My Backyard

Wednesday 27th of July 2016

Pasty but is when the chicks' poop dries and covers their vent. It has to be very carefully washed off or they could die. Sounds like your birds have outgrown that stage.


Saturday 2nd of April 2016

Hi Kathryn! I was about to pin this article to my pinterest board when I thought "Hey, that house looks familiar!" I live on the Oregon Coast but make semi-frequent trips to Eugene to go shopping. Last weekend, we were driving around Eugene when I saw a white chicken duck through a picket fence in a residential area. Now I see you live in Oregon as well. Did you take this pic in Eugene? If so, that would be amazing.

Kathryn @ Farming My Backyard

Tuesday 5th of April 2016

That's too funny. We're in Portland, so it wasn't us. But I must have a twin down on Eugene!

I did have a neighbor see the pin and recognize our neighborhood once.


Wednesday 20th of January 2016

The only real mistake I made was thinking I could build the perfect coop on the first try. While the coop I built was very beautiful and functional, I found that I would recommend not putting as much into the first one. Like anything hind sight is 20/20 and I have made several mods and additions that customize our coop for our girls, the yard, and us. What I have found a lot of on line builds are geared for people with little or no construction experience and resources. What I have is room for 30+ chickens and ducks, that morphs to the seasons. It takes very little effort to clean and automated light vent and heat. But i still want to demo this and build a better one, because I always have something that could be better


Sunday 17th of January 2016

Hi there, thank you for sharing the list you have put together.

I started with a rooster I found abandoned at the river. He had been attacked by a dog and was in need of some care. After a week or so he started crowing and we eventually received a letter from the local Council. I did a Google search on how to stop a rooster crowing but the only two options were an operation, or Velcro strangulation. The operation is extreme and many birds die during the procedure, and the strangulation leaves the rooster making a strangled crowing sound (you can hear them on YouTube videos).

I came up with another solution and so far it has stopped Boris from crowing.

Now he has a hen to keep him company and if he does crow I will tweak my crow-stop solution.

Danielle Diakoff-King

Wednesday 25th of January 2017

What is your 'other solution?'

Jane Doe

Sunday 3rd of April 2016

Yeah.... I have 20 hens and 1 rooster and he NEVER.SHUTS.UP. I'm in town but there is no rule against having roosters. Still, I went to the neighbors I like (the ones who don't already have 15 mini schnauzers barking all night long) and told them if Cogburn got on their nerves to just let me know and he'd be in the crockpot that night. Whether he doesn't bother them or they just can't bring themselves to be the instrument of his relocation to the dinner table I don't know, but no one complains. :D

Kathryn @ Farming My Backyard

Tuesday 19th of January 2016

Interesting. I'm not familiar with any humane ways to prevent roosters from crowing. Our next door neighbors have an illegal rooster and they may not realize how well the rest of us can hear it crowing throughout the day, even though it has a flock of six hens as companions.

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