Pros and cons of free range chickens
Free Range Farming
Farming has been an essential activity for humans since the dawn of modern civilization. Without the ability to produce excess amounts of food the amazing cities that litter the landscape never could have been built. Today modern farming methods allow fewer humans to produce more food than ever before. However, questions have begun to arise about the health and environmental impact of ethically questionable mass farming methods. Alternative traditions have begun to rise up as a response to these harsh critics say of modern agricultural practices. The largest and most popular of these traditions is that of free range farming.
Free Range Poultry
The free range farming movement has had a particularly strong impact on the poultry industry. Millions of chickens are killed every day in meat plants across the country. These chickens are raised in cramped conditions without access to some of the basics needed to grow healthy. It is ignorant to think that these conditions do not affect the quality of the food that you receive from these chickens. Free range chickens are given open spaces so that they can run around outside in a manner that is more akin to how their ancient ancestors lived. They are able to typically enjoy a wider range of social interactions and physical activity while also eating a more healthy and varied diet. The end result is that you are able to enjoy much higher quality meat that has been raised using far more ethical standards.
Pros of free range chickens
There are quite a few Pros of free range chickens when compared to the mass-produced industrial farming alternatives. For one they are far more natural. They can live in a way that is much more in harmony with nature. This, in turn, will confer numerous Advantages to your chickens. They are able to become much more disease resistant because they are not forced to spend large parts of the stay wallowing around in their own filthy or the filth of nearby chickens that are crammed into cages with them. Instead, they are able to experience the wonderful health benefits of the fresh air and sunshine. During the summertime, you do need to be nearly as worried about the temperature as the chickens will be able to roam around to regulate their internal temperature far better than if they were stuck inside of a coop the whole summer. Many chickens can die because of heat exhaustion on a traditional farm. This can help to improve the profitability of your farm by helping to effectively limit the excess losses due to heat exhaustion that these other farms experience over the course of a year.
Cons of free range chickens
Now to keep this article fair and balanced let’s take a look at a few of the potential Cons of free range chickens. While they are certainly better in many ways from the mass-produced chickens that traditional farms have helped to popularize there are still a few Disadvantages. Chickens are like any other animal and when you let them roam free there is a good chance they might get into some things you would rather they avoided. You can expect to find some chicken poop on the porch or any other area you do not keep well protected. You will have to get up and look for the eggs that your hens are laying because they will hide them from you and even switch spots over time as the eggs are taken from them. Chickens also love to attack fresh plant sprouts. If you are trying to start a garden or farm that grows any kind of product you will want to make sure that they are well protected from the chickens as they could ruin your entire crop if you are not careful with them.
Types of chicken
Now, most people are not aware of this but there are multiple types of chickens breeds the same way there are for dogs. Some of these breeds are much better suited for free range farming than others. Let’s take a look at the best types of chicken for free range farming real quick so you can make an informed decision about which type of bird would be the best fit for you and your family on your farm.
The leghorn is going to be a great example of a bird that will make a good free range bird. They are well known for maintaining awareness of predators. If you are looking at breed types you will want to keep an eye out for birds that have a good color to blend in with their surroundings and the types of birds that are more alert of their surrounding so that they do not fall prey to any foxes or coyotes that may be prowling around at night.
Food available in pasture
Perhaps one of the most exciting things for most farmers that get involved in the free range farming movement is the wide variety of feed that is made available to their animals. Animals are created to live in outdoor natural environments and are equipped to find a wide variety of food sources on their own devices if they are in the proper environment. Free range chickens s will not only have access to the food that you make available for them but they will be able to hunt both Worms and Insects. These are able to provide much-needed nutrients to the chickens that are not always available at the adequate levels in the food that they are normally fed. In this way, you will be able to ensure that our chickens have full healthy and varied diets that are providing them with all of the nutrients they need. The End uses of free range chickens are varied. They are a far more healthy bird and as such will provide much higher quality meat but not only that they will be able to provide higher quality eggs as well.
Jump to top