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Do Chickens Really Need a Dust Bath?

chickens taking a dust bath

Yes, chickens really do need a dust bath. Providing a suitable area for dust bathing has several benefits. It helps chickens condition their feathers. It minimize mites and lice. And it gives chickens something pleasurable to do, which helps keep them from pecking each other out of boredom. Plus wallowing in dust can help chickens […]

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Why Do Chickens Molt?

a molting hen

Finding lots of feathers in your chicken yard is a sign that your birds are molting and will soon develop healthy coats of fresh new plumage. This annual loss and renewal of feathers is perfectly normal and is not an indication of disease. So let’s examine the question of why do chickens molt? What is […]

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What Kind of Care Do Chickens Need in Winter?

chicken standing in snow

Cold winter weather brings a different set of issues for a flock of chickens, compared to warmer summer weather. So what kind of care do chickens need in winter? Control Humidity The most important thing you can do during cold weather is to make sure the coop isn’t high in humidity. Relative humidity is generally […]

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Why Can’t Chickens Fly?

flying chicken

Who says chickens can’t fly? Some chickens fly really well. Others not so well, or not at all. So rather than ask “Why can’t chickens fly?” we should be asking “Why don’t chickens fly?” Wing Power The short answer is that chickens have small wings relative to their heavy bodies. Why that matters relates to […]

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How to Sex Poultry — Chickens, Turkeys, Guineas, Ducks, Geese

white goose standing outside

For some types of poultry, determining a bird’s gender is easy. Other times not so. Here’s a quick rundown on how to sex poultry, including chickens, turkeys, guinea fowl, ducks, and geese. Chickens Some baby chicks may be sexed at the time of hatch by differences in down color. Otherwise, the easiest way to sex […]

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What is a Purebred and What Is a Hybrid Chicken?

two young girls each holding a chicken

Defining the differences between a purebred and a hybrid chicken can be complicated. Some breeds are not purebred. But even a pure breed may have started out as a hybrid. What is a purebred chicken? Purebreds, also called straightbreds, will breed true. That means all the breeder roosters and hens have uniform bloodlines, and their […]

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How to Sex a Chicken

Phoenix Bantams outside in run

A chicken’s gender may be determined by a number of different methods. Which method works best depends on the bird’s age, breed and variety, and skill of the observer. Here are the four common ways to sex a chicken. Vent Sexing Vent sexing can be done soon after a chick hatches. Also called cloacal sexing, […]

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What Is a Dual Purpose Chicken?

white wyandotte chicken standing outside

To some chicken keepers, a dual purpose breed is one that’s suitable for both meat and eggs. To other chicken keepers, dual purpose refers to a breed that’s suitable for neither meat nor eggs. So exactly what is a dual purpose chicken? Meat or Eggs Before the poultry industry developed into the behemoth it is […]

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What Causes Diarrhea in Chickens?

Cecal Droppings

Chicken diarrhea is often called enteritis, but the two words are not synonymous. Enteritis is inflammation of the intestines. One sign of enteritis is diarrhea. On the other hand, diarrhea has other causes besides enteritis. For practical purposes, though, the two words are often interchangeable. Whether the result of enteritis or something else, trying to […]

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