Raising chickens in the city is tons of fun but it certainly comes with challenges. We believe these are the urban chicken coop supply must haves!
Litter/bedding for the coop and run
That’s right, you’re going to need to spend your hard earned cash on a substance for the purpose of a landing for chicken poop!
Many people in the country use straw as a floor base in the coop. Straw is usually inexpensive and a lot easier to come by in rural areas. The story may be a bit different in your urban neighborhood though, you will need to pop into your closest Pet store to grab some Wood shavings or straw.
Although straw is cheap it is a lot harder to break down and would only recommend it for nesting boxes. The wood shavings break down really well and they also mask the smell of smelly chicken poop!
Feeder and Drinker
As a newbie chicken owner, lots of people think they can give chickens a dog bowl or old pans from the house.
they are quickly proven wrong when they realize their chickens standing in their feeders and filling their waterers with poo and bedding.
This is not only unsightly, but it is also detrimental to their health.
Parasites and coccidia can spread quickly in conditions like these and become fatal. Being prepared with feeders and Drinkers that were meant for chickens are a must-have item before bringing a new flock home.
It’s a really good idea to buy a high quality feeder and drinker right from the start. You and your chickens will use these every single day.
Cheap ones will break within a few months, leaving you to go out and purchase another. Bigger is also generally better when purchasing a feeder and drinker The less you have to fill them up and worry about the chickens running out, the better off you’ll be.
In the wild, chickens prefer to fly (as high as they possibly can) onto a tree branch to protect themselves from predators in the night.
It is their natural instinct to roost at night, and they will find the tallest item in their coop to satisfy this urge — even if it is brand new feeder or drinker.
Unfortunately, wherever a chicken decides to roost is also where a chicken will poop!
Even if a roost is a two by four, just a few inches off the ground, it will be sufficient. Roosters and hens will latch on at night and settle in for a good night’s sleep.
if hens are confined without a nesting box, they will be forced to lay their eggs all over the ground of their their coop. Sometimes this results in dirty or cracked eggs.
Even worse, eggs in this situation often become the target, and cause, of egg-eating among the flock.
A good rule of thumb is one nesting box per four to five hens. They will usually share their space.
Oyster Shell Grit
Chickens digest their food differently than other animals. They require Grit found in the earth, to digest their meal within their gizzards fully.
if you do not have free range chickens they will require Oyster shell Grit to help digest and break down their food.
It makes sense because chickens don’t have teeth!
An intensive Calcium, Magnesium and Vitamin D3 liquid supplement for developing bone strength, egg shell quality, support feathering and encourages the body to absorb calcium. Agrivite Enhance.
Oregano Essential Oil is a must-have for new chicken owners who prefer to aid their chicken’s overall wellness without using antibiotics.
Oregano has antibacterial properties and can be added to a flocks’ water to help support their immune system.
For example, if one of my roos steps on something and contracts bumble foot I will immediately use an antibiotic ointment and supplement his water with oregano essential oil for added support.
Diatomaceous Earth – (Smite Powder)
Chickens love to take dust baths, and this is extremely beneficial if you suspect your flock may be riddled with mites or lice.
Diatomaceous earth combines minerals from clay, iron oxide, silica that come from fossil remains.
Adding this to a flocks favorite dust bath area or a designated area in the coop will aid and treat external parasites without much effort.
It is natural, safe, and chickens love the silky texture as they bathe.
Bordem Busters to keep your chooks busy!
When chickens have little to keep them amused, they will often turn to pecking at themselves and one another - an unhealthy habit that can cause feather loss, injury and animosity among your chicken flock.
Bored chickens are also more likely to engage in egg eating, another bad habit.
Make a pinata!
your ‘pinata’ of choice, some of our favorites are cabbage, cauliflower or broccoli, and use twine to hang it in the coop. Dodging and pecking at the pinata will be a fun game for your flock, and provide them with a healthy boost of greens!
Get a Chicken Swing!
For the chicken who has everything, the chicken swing is a welcome addition to your chicken coop, and will keep both you and your flock amused for hours on end. Swinging back and forth is a delight for your chickens and a great activity to help combat boredom.
Add a Mirror to Your Chicken Run!
Chickens take pride in their appearance, and will revel in having a mirror handy so they can check themselves out. You will find your girls pecking, squawking and prancing around in front of it time and time again. The mirror can be of any shape or size, just be sure that it is secured firmly in place so your girls don’t accidentally knock it over when they are fighting over their precious preening time. If you have a rooster, a mirror isn’t such a great idea - they do not take too kindly to having another cockerel in their flock.