Anyone raise meat chickens here? I was thinking about it. Our town allows 20 per acre, scaling down for smaller properties. I should be able to get about 10. Is it cost effective? How hard is it to prepare them and is it simple to learn?
Yes, chickens are easy to raise if you can keep predators away. Cost effective is a relative term. It's hard to compete financially with the big commercial growers who use growth hormones and food bases that enhance rapid growth. But, those same growth factors detract immensely from food quality and flavor. We usually buy 20-30 chicks each spring. We start eating them as fryers in about 2 months and keep 5 or 6 hens to add to the egg laying coop. The retired hens are killed as stewing hens for soups. We keep about 20 laying hens, which gives us enough fresh eggs to keep about 3 families going. Once you've cleaned and cut up a chicken or two, you will be able to breeze right through them.