Top 5 reasons to raise chickens on pasture
Chickens. The Gateway Animal for many a person to start raising their own food. Easy, fairly quiet, and small. It’s no wonder people are attracted to them! The exact how-to of raising them…that is as varied as the folks who have chickens.
Soo…why skip the tradition coop & run?
#1 reason to raise chickens on pasture: chicken health & cleanliness
Chickens are foragers. They are constantly on the move. They like clean areas. The Standard Coop & Run is stationary; and chickens soon turn it to bare dirt and grime. With that comes parasites, pests, and bugs. And it takes a lot of input to try and stay on top of all that.
Enter a portable chicken tractors! Whether it is a 322, 812, or 1312, these cackellacs are designed to move daily. This constantly provides your chickens with clean, fresh grass and bugs. No dull dirt runs, bugs, or pests. Fresh air, sunshine, and clean grass are a recipe for success!
#2 reason to raise chickens on pasture: your health & your customer’s health
The products coming from chickens – whether eggs or meat – are better for you then chickens who do not have access to fresh pasture. Just google “pasture raised poultry health benefits” to find a host of information on it! Check out what Mike Bager says below:
Pasture-raised chicken meat tends to be higher in iron, higher in Omega 3, have a lower Omega 6:3 ratio, and be higher in antioxidants (Vitamin E, for example). Pasture-raised eggs have higher Omega 3s, a lower Omega 6:3 ratio, increased vitamin D, and more antioxidants.By Mike Badger. Published in APPPA Grit 105 (May/June 2018). LINK
The Huff Post also has this interesting post about it.
#3 reason to raise chickens on pasture: healthier pastures & soils
What chicken manure can do for pasture health is absolutely amazing! The nitrogen in their manure brings life back into almost any soil. It has rejuvenated many, many areas on our farm. Pasture health increases, chicken health increases, pastured animals health increases. It is an amazing cycle that continues for years.
#4 reason to raise chickens on pasture: less parasites / breaking the parasite cycle
Chickens, when moved after cattle, sheep, or goats help break the parasite cycle of these ruminants. Again, it’s a beautiful system! With chickens eating the hatching larvae instead of the ruminant, that larvae’s life cycle ends instead of traveling through a cow or goat stomach and becoming a worm and an health issue. This in turns lessens their chances of becoming re-infected with parasites. And it’s less work for you. Plus your animals are healthier.
#5 reason to raise chickens on pasture: happiness
Happiness should not be discounted. Your happiness. Your animals happiness. There is nothing like moving animals to fresh grass daily and seeing their JOY at it! There is health benefits to enjoying your job and feeling joy & happiness in it 🙂