I don’t spend much time thinking about the business of chickens. The girls (and boys) have become part of my daily life, a morning and evening chore that provides a bit of entertainment and more than a little sense of satisfaction. So, when the ladies in the business office at work suggested that I should, perhaps, be paying a bit more attention to the business of chickens, or – more accurately – the very, very small business that we run out of our chicken coop, it took me a moment to realize that, perhaps, it really is worth my time to consider what’s going into our operation.
As such, I’m going to spend the next year chronicling what is going in and out of the coop, in terms of both feed & egg productivity. In addition to this, I hope to chronicle, accurately, the costs associated with having chickens, not as a means to dissuade others from their own poultry pursuits, but to provide a framework of understanding for those considering such options.
The way I am imagining this working, from here on out, is a monthly cost analysis, kept here (for purposes of both transparency and ease. I’ll begin with our first month, and try to update during the first week of each month or after any particularly large poultry project.
January 1, 2012 – February 6, 2012
Chicken Feed -$15.19/bag x 3 bags = $45.57
Pine Shavings – $5.49/bale x 6 bales = $32.94 (We could get these a bit cheaper, but this particular brand is local, and I’m happy to make up in cost what isn’t getting pumped into our air in the form of fossil fuels).
Total Costs: $78.51
Eggs – $3.00/dozen x 10 = $30.00
Whole Chicken – $12.00
Total Earnings – $42.00
One thing that I want to note, however, is that I purchased food today (with almost a week’s feed left in the hopper). Feed & shavings last approximately 3 full weeks, and in that time, we usually sell between 9 and 12 dozen eggs, depending on productivity. As such, I hope to see these numbers begin balancing out a bit more, as our egg productivity dropped dramatically in January after a week and a half of sub-zero temperatures.
Do you raise chickens and sell eggs? How do you keep track of productivity and costs?