Rising egg costs have East Texans looking to bring chickens home to roost

Published: Jan. 6, 2023 at 3:23 PM CST|Updated: Jan. 6, 2023 at 6:56 PM CST
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TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - The price of eggs has become so concerning to some East Texans, that they are looking at raising their own chickens for eggs, even in municipal areas.

Most municipalities have city ordinances that may allow you to raise chickens within city limits, with some restrictions.

That’s why many are looking to raise chickens in their backyards.

ACE Hardware workers in Hawkins say they’ve had dozens of people come in wanting to know how to get started raising their own chickens and building a coop.

“They’re not hard to raise. We say you can use T-post, or you can get lumber to make the posts, out of a 4 by 4 or something,” says ACE worker Marlena Sabella.

at 5, 6 or 7-dollars a dozen, depending on where you shop, the price of eggs is becoming a pricey part of a shoppers budget.

“We go through a lot of eggs with cooking and baking and things like that. It’s definitely helped us out,” says Hawkins area chicken raiser Lois Phillips.

The starting point is baby chicks. Most can be purchased online, and need to be kept warm as soon as they arrive.

Chickens are very low maintenance. Keep them well fed, well watered and give them shelter, and they’ll do the rest.

“Typically your birds 6 months to about 2 years old, is going to be their most avid time of laying,” says Camp county Texas A&M Agri-life extension agent Kaycee Davis.

An inexpensive coup would need tin, chicken wire and two by fours, reclaimed lumber works just as well.

Laying boxes should be elevated. Chickens don’t like laying at ground level.

Preferably high fences, chickens can fly enough to get over short fences.

“Make sure their coup their nesting area, where they go up to roost, is warm and dry,” Davis says.

At about 6 months they’ll begin to lay.

“I get plenty of eggs for myself, I’ve got 19 chicks right now,” Phillips says.

If you’re considering raising chickens, check with your city on what restrictions they may have.

And do your own research into what breeds are the best egg layers, and where to buy them.