Raising Healthy Chickens 
[without smells nor flies]

A chicken barn is easier to construct than a pigpen.  Unlike in the design of the latter, there's no need to dig 3 feet on the ground. Chickens always kept on scratching the ground, mixing soil, which is easier to maintain. The key is floor with soil. We spray rice husks few centimeters apart on it.  A 4X8 sq.m. chicken house can accommodate 100 layer chickens.


Upon hatching, we only feed the chicks unpolished rice and water for the next three days. This method is intended to let the chicks acquire strong digestive systems.  In this way, the chicks' intestines become longer, compared to the normal way of raising. When I first start this system, I was worried and expected some losses. But for several batches so far, we encountered no causalities yet to our chicks. 

After three days, we start feeding the chicken with grower mash and fermented saw dust (mentioned later part), and a lot of green grasses . When hens started laying eggs five-six months later, the grower mash feeds would be substituted by layer mash with sawdust and grasses.  We sometimes spray sea shell powder and small stones to the ground.   The small stones inside chicken's stomach help optimize its digestion process. 

To keep the chickens strong and healthy, we give them the following: grasses as vitamin source, soil as mineral source, sawdust as fiber, minerals and amino acid sources.  With these elements to be found easily in nature, it cost us nothing because there's no need to give the chickens extra commercial vitamins, minerals and antibiotics.


Our method of raising chickens could also help keep other plants stay healthy.  This is the process: we keep another batch of layer chickens on one field of the bush enclosed in a fence, with an outside feed lot. We make the feed lot fence movable.  In this manner, we let the chickens deweed ,cultivate, fertilize the ground in the six allotted fields.  After 2 to 3 months, the ground got cleared and cultivated. Then, we move the fence to the other portion of the field attached to the chicken house, particularly those area with grasses.

Meanwhile, we plant vegetables on the cultivated ground.  After harvest, we put back the fence and let chickens clean again the field. 

The original idea is to make a big fence divided into six portions and put chickens on one section to another. But because of short budget, we just made a movable small fence around the chicken house.


Commercial feeds tend to be lacking in fibers.  On the other hand, sawdust if fermented contains lots of minerals and amino acid which a chicken badly needs in its diet.  

How to ferment?  If you go to a lumber yard you will see mountains of sawdust.  Look for wet and hot part of it.  The hot part is where the sawdust-eating bacteria are living.  Get a portion of the hot sawdust, probably about 2kgs., bring it back and mix it with 10kgs of rice bran with water.  Keep the moisture at 60% condition.  To determine the exact amount of moisture, grip the rice bran lightly and then open your palm.  Touch the rice bran in your palm.  If it makes just a single crack, the moisture is about 60%, if it stick to one place, that means too much moisture, however, many cracks means too little moisture.

The output of the above-mentioned process can become the seed bacteria for fermentation. Pile it for a few days.  If the temperature becomes so high like 60 0C, mix the rice bran with shovel. Then set aside 2kgs for seed, while mix the rest with 50kgs of saw dust.  Keep also a 60% moisture. Wait for few days.  Then add another 100kgs of saw dust with 10kgs of rice bran. 

In adding 10% rice bran, you can make any big amount of fermented saw dust. For chicken feeds, just mix about 10%- 15% which can save you from commercial feeds while maintaining the health of your chicken.

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