Rising egg prices raise interest in backyard chickens

Interest in backyard chickens is up
Interest in backyard chickens is up(kbjr)
Published: Mar. 7, 2023 at 12:06 PM CST
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DULUTH, MN. (Northern News Now) - In the last year, avian flu has killed millions of chickens causing egg prices to go up sixty percent and internet searches for raising chickens to go up one hundred percent according to CNN research.

Check local ordinances before taking the poultry plunge
Check local ordinances before taking the poultry plunge(kbjr)

Mark Walters of Miel Honey is better known as a beekeeper but he’s also a poulterer. That’s the fancy term for someone who has chickens. He says it doesn’t take stacks of money to get started.

“I found how to get some local chickens and there was a flea bitten chicken coop that I patched up nothing fancy so the chickens had a place to go.” said Walters.

With egg prices up, many people are giving backyard chickens a go. When she’s not working her day job at the DECC, Lucie Amundsen is helping out at the Locally Laid chicken operation in Wrenshall. She offers tips to poultry wannabes on selecting a breed of bird.

“You want sweet backyard chickens for your children to interact with, I love the big orange buff orpingtons.

Those are an excellent bird. If you’re really in it for lots and lots of eggs, Rhode Island reds are surefire producers.” said Amundsen.

Both breeds are hardy in our cold and snowy climate.

“These are kind of more bodacious northern gals that eat more and produce eggs even when it is cold.” said Amundsen.

Lucie reminds people to check their community’s rules regarding backyard chickens before taking the poultry plunge.

Duluth for example has rules to follow.

“There is a poultry ordinance and people would be well served to go the City of Duluth website and look it up.” said Amundsen.

Mark Walters tells us the season to order chicks is here if you want to take a crack at cracking corn for chickens this year. He says Dan’s Feed Bin in Superior is one place where that can be done in the Northland.

“On the delivery day you’ll go over there and there’ll be a box with your chicks in there and that’s the way to get started.” said Walters.

Most people want to raise chickens to save money on grocery bills, of course, but some people find out supplies cost more than the eggs produced. The backyard chicken project dot com tells that money can be saved by building your own chicken coop from scrap lumber.

Rules on chickens in the City of Duluth include a maximum of five hens. Roosters aren’t allowed. The coop must be at least 25 feet from your house and a city license is required.

In Duluth, Dave Anderson, Northern News Now.

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