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Backyard Chicken Farming Fails

She goes on to state that the majority of backyard farmers get their chicks from the same hatcheries that large factory farms do. These are the same hatcheries that involve large-scale layer operations, and suffocate or grind alive male chicks during the sexing process (not to mention de-beaking young chicks and other cruel and often deadly practices.)

This is a reminder that even for those select backyard chicken “farmers” who give adequate care to their hens (shelter, medical attention, appropriate feed, etc.) and plan to keep their chickens for the 12+ years or so that they will not be laying, there is a trail of tortured layer hens, and dead chicks in their wake…

JoNel Aleccia does a good job of beginning to open the dialogue about the reality of small scale animal operations and their ethical implications, but there is a whole lot more to the story:

What’s Wrong with Backyard Eggs?

What is an Egg to a Chicken?

Free Range: Not Free Enough

The reality is that raising “local” and “home-grown” animals will never be humane or ethical, nor is it possible to supply the demand for animal products and flesh in any manner. Small-scale “hipster” farmers are simply getting a taste of what it means to treat a living, breathing animal as a product, and it appears that many don’t have the stomach for it.

If you would like to have a chicken friend, dont buy or breed. Adopt and give sanctuary instead of slavery to one of the thousands of chickens in need of a home.

Related Posts:

The Missing Children you Wont See on Milk Cartons

Bruno: A New Perspective on Happy Cows

10 Things Everyone Should Know About Free-Range Turkeys

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Alisa Rutherford-Fortunati

Gentle World is a vegan intentional community and non-profit organization, whose core purpose is to help build a more peaceful society, by educating the public about the reasons for being vegan, the benefits of vegan living, and how to go about making such a transition. For more information about vegan food and other aspects of a vegan lifestyle, visit the Gentle World website and subscribe to our monthly newsletter.


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11:34PM PDT on Aug 15, 2013

What's the point

9:34AM PDT on Aug 5, 2013

Thank you for noting at the end of the article that chickens continue laying for more than two years. Most hens lay year-round (or nearly so) for the first few years, then the laying season gradually shortens as they age. We have had chickens in their mid teens that still lay eggs for a few weeks in the spring. Some people make the mistake of thinking their chickens will never lay again the first time the egg supply dries up during late fall/early winter when in fact if they would just wait a couple of months they would see prolific egg production again through the spring and summer months.

The standard practice of butchering laying hens at two years of age is not because they stop laying at that age, but because the meat is still reasonable tender. If you are raising chickens for both meat and eggs, letting them lay for two years before butchering them is considered an efficient compromise. Any longer and the meat would only be good for stew.

8:54AM PDT on Aug 5, 2013

Bradley, what the #### has this spam got to do with keeping chickens?

I know if I had chickens I'd be keeping them for life, not just for eggs. In the UK, I believe the charity that rehomes hens actually has a waiting list of people wanting to adopt. Sounds hard to believe? I hope it's still true!

3:46AM PDT on Aug 4, 2013

thanks for sharing

7:20AM PDT on Aug 2, 2013

Urban farming is very in vogue right now.

9:27AM PDT on Jul 29, 2013

It's sad to know that a noble thought ends so horribly for these birds.

7:15AM PDT on Jul 28, 2013

Thank you.

9:20PM PDT on Jul 26, 2013


9:29AM PDT on Jul 25, 2013

Sent this article to my daughter who has a flock of backyard chickens via Facebook. Claire above has a realistic perspective of the situation, I think.

2:00AM PDT on Jul 23, 2013


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people are talking

rescue animals are the best

I like Tumeric but in small doses as it's very pungent!

The cat appears far from impressed with these pathetic attempts by the owner for attention

I'll try it. TYFS!


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