Chicken Coop out of a Swing Set! Answers to Questions About My Chickens

I’m often asked various questions about my chickens so I thought I’d write a post answering all of the questions I usually get in hopes that it will prove helpful.  
Where did you get your chickens?

I ordered my chickens from I chose my breeds based on heat tolerance, reliable egg laying, and the color of their eggs. The website allows you to narrow your search based on pretty much anything you like. The chickens were shipped to me the day they hatched in a lined box with air holes and a heating pad. We picked them up from the post office the very next day and brought them home. 
Answers to all of the questions I've been asked about raising chickens.
Where did you keep them when they were chicks? 
They lived inside until they were fully feathered out, in a storage bin with litter material in the bottom and a heating lamp up on top.
Answers to all of the questions I've been asked about raising chickens.
What color are your chicken’s eggs? 
Pictured are the colors of eggs I get from my hens. Egg color is dependent on species and individual birds. A little further in this post I will tell you the breeds and what color of egg each one lays.
Answers to all of the questions I've been asked about raising chickens.
How Many Eggs Do You Get Each Week?
Some of our chickens started laying at 4 months and they were all laying by 6 months (If I remember correctly) and we usually get 6 eggs every day, every now and then just five. Usually, the only time egg production is low is when the weather has been particularly miserable, which I can sympathize with. But most days, my refrigerator looks about like this. This is what happens when you get 3 1/2 dozen eggs per week. It’s a great problem to have and allows me to share eggs with neighbors. Note: I don’t wash my eggs until right before using them, if they are dirty. This helps them to stay fresh longer.
Answers to all of the questions I've been asked about raising chickens.
 What Types Of Chickens Do You Have? 
I have six chickens.
Their names are: Granny, Glammy, Red, Boss, Zeb, and Fluffy Bottoms.
The types of chickens I have are:
  • 1 Rhode Island Red (Red) – light brown eggs
  • 1 Barred Plymouth Rock (Zeb) – light brown eggs
  • 1 Australorp (Boss) – light brown eggs
  • 2 Easter Egger (Glammy and Granny) – One lays green eggs and the other blue
  • 1 Golden Buff (Fluffy Bottoms) – dark brown eggs
Answers to all of the questions I've been asked about raising chickens.
What do they eat?
I feed my chickens pellet feed with a calcium supplement mixed in as well as a mix of dried corn, oats, nuts, and other seeds as scatter on the ground each day. All of my commercial feed is purchased from Tractor Supply and I usually buy 400-500 pounds of feed at a time so I only go two or three times a year at most. Pictured is 350 pounds. I shoot for more but if it’s been a long day I stop once I get tired of picking up 50 pound sacks. I would estimate they go through about $15 of feed a month. Most folks sell some eggs to cover the feed but that would require me leaving the house more than I already have to, so I just give eggs away to neighbors. I enjoy that more, anyway.
Every morning my chickens get a bowl of hot oatmeal and on pretty days I walk around the yard and fill up a basket with clover, grass, etc as a treat. They also love apples and kitchen scraps. As one friend put it when I first got chickens, “They are pretty much goats with beaks.”
Answers to all of the questions I've been asked about raising chickens.
What Type Of Enclosure Do You Have? 
For their pen, we closed in the kid’s old swingset and made it into a large chicken coop.
And by “We” I mean my father in law and husband. But I’m sure they couldn’t have done it without my emotional support. 🙂
Answers to all of the questions I've been asked about raising chickens.
Nesting Boxes and Roosting Area
Two Lowe’s buckets are bolted down to the top of the slide area as nesting boxes and beneath what used to be the slide area we have an enclosed roosting space, with a wall in front of it to further block out the elements. The center of this wall is removable so that I can get in there and clean out the nesting area from time to time. The coop is enclosed on one end (sides and top) so only part of it is subject to rain, snow, and the like. However, in winter I enclose all sides with construction grade plastic (as pictured above) to block cold winter drafts, leaving only the end with the door as the area where fresh air can pass through.
Answers to all of the questions I've been asked about raising chickens.
Are Chickens A Lot Of Trouble? 
Chickens are, by far, the easiest critter I’ve ever had. I give them fresh water, food, and scatter daily and check their eggs. From time to time I rake out all of the straw or pine needles and replace it with fresh. I do this every couple of months but even then it just makes me feel better and is not necessarily needed. (I use pine needles during warmer months because they are in abundance where I live). Other than gathering the eggs and bringing them treats, that is about it!
That covers most of the questions I can think of but if you have others feel free to leave them in the comments. I’m glad to help if I can!


  1. Christy:

    Thanks very much for the chicken post. I enjoyed it immensely. When I went back to school to become a (Registered) Veterinary Technician, I was hoping our school would have chickens (and pigs), but it didn’t. I did have a chicken patient one time, and it was very nice and easy to handle.

    I’ve always wanted chickens, but I can’t have them where I live, and I’m getting too old and too banged-up to care for something else so I have to content myself with cross stitched chicken magnets for my fridge, and have about six of them I’ve made.

    Please excuse if this is a duplicate. When I hit submit the first time, I’d lost my internet connection and when it reconnected, this page was blank, and I assumed that it didn’t send, and I redid it.

    Oh, and please keep the chicken posts coming!

    1. Hey Kathy! Oh what an amazing life you have lived! I love that you have a cross stitch farm growing on your fridge 🙂 thank you for mentally taking me to that farm you and I both hope for one of these days. You never know what God’s plan is.

  2. Not related to raising chickens but do they stop laying eggs and if so do you eat the chickens or do they just keep on living until they die naturally ?

    1. They do eventually slow down their egg production and then stop laying. However, as I have three hens, including one old hen, once you name them, you really can’t eat them!

  3. I stayed on an organic farm in PEI a few summers ago with all sorts of animals and by FAR my favourite critters to hang out with were the chickens. Yours are GORGEOUS! There is a HUGE difference between store bought and fresh eggs. The fresh are utterly delicious! You are a very lucky woman. Amen darlin’.

  4. OMG, what an awesome beautiful informative post. Now I want some chickens. Definantly a excellent homeschooling project/lesson. Thank you for sharing. I love your site and do share it with others.
    Your a Blessing to me,thank you.

  5. this is so fun to learn about!! so love that you are a country girl at heart! and are raising you kids to love the simple life as well!!!

    1. I dream of living on a small piece of land, out on our own, providing for ourselves as much as possible. The wonderful thing is that my husband has slowly adopted that dream as well. We are working towards it now 🙂

      1. Christy,
        Don’t ever give up on that dream!!! Just a few years ago, I was in the same boat. My husband & I along with our 4 kids lived in a nice house in a subdivision! Not that it was awful but we wanted, needed some land. After 2 long, hard years, we sold our house & now live on a lil farm! It’s a smaller house but with 11 acres. We all love it & I wouldn’t change a thing!!! Even though sometimes it’s tough for all 6 of us to share 1 bathroom, LOL! But having my horses, my goats, the chickens, the barn cats, & 3 dogs is priceless!!! And to make it even better, this farm was my husband’s grandpa’s farm so what I’m trying to say is that All 6 of our dreams came true!!! Good luck on your dream!!! Love your blog! It’s so very helpful!!!

  6. Love this Christy, so exciting hearing about your poultry family! Thank you for such an informative and interesting post

      1. My husband will never eat eggs fresh from a chicken, especially the brown one. I enjoyed reading about your chickens. Thank for sharing.

      2. We’ve had chickens ever since we were married and winter is oatmeal to keep them
        laying good. Chickens get cold too and we have some below zero days. We use to raise 100
        hens and sell eggs to neighbors. Now we only have 13 girls.Two of each kind like yours. Will get just a few to keep just enough for use and maybe a son or daughters family when they drop by.
        Love your posts.
        Looking for a recipe for salad with broccoli and grapes with walnuts. Hope you have one.

  7. I have 8 chickens and I just love them. Fresh eggs are the best eggs. I’m very proud of the fact that I have chickens and I haven’t screwed anything up lolo

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