Management and Care

Purchasing Chicks - Many begin to think about raising some baby chicks for the home flock or to supply eggs for sale. There are several considerations for those contemplating purchasing a few chicks.

Hatching Small Numbers of Eggs - Incubation is the process by which the embryo within the egg develops into a fully formed chick capable of breaking free from the shell. Incubating eggs requires several environmental considerations if any chicks are to hatch.

Raising Baby Chicks - Chickens are quite suitable for most small farming enterprises. The birds produce eggs and/or meat for the table and a great nitrogen rich fertilizer for the garden. To have a successful flock, all producers, large and small must follow a few simple rules for years of productivity and enjoyment.

Brooding and Rearing Baby Chicks - Baby chicks are really quite easy to raise. With a few pieces of equipment and a small place to put them, success in brooding and rearing is virtually assured. During this period of the bird's life, the most important needs are for warmth, protection, feed, and water.

Caring for Chickens in the Fall Months - As we move into the fall months, cool weather arrives and rain once again falls in western Oregon. There are special considerations for the poultry flock during these months of changing conditions.

Why Did My Chickens Stop Laying? - Hens stop laying eggs for a variety of reasons. External or internal stimuli affect hormone levels, which change the condition of the ovary and oviduct, the organs responsible for egg production. The results of these changes is the reduction of egg production.

Seasonal Changes affect Poultry - In the fall, chickens will begin to change their eating habits. Because the weather is cooler, their feed consumption will increase. In order to stay warm, they need to burn more calories.

Raising Chickens in Urban Environments - Introductory publication addressing some common questions and concerns about raising chickens in an urban environment.


Feeding Pastured Poultry - The pasturing of poultry is becoming a popular management method for many small flock producers, and even some moderately sized commercial farms. When pasturing chickens, the birds are allowed to roam in large areas that have various grasses or other forage plants.

How to Feed Your Laying and Breeding Hens - Small flock producers can choose from many brands of feed produced by several manufacturers. These manufactured feeds are computer formulated by company nutritionists to provide optimal nutrition for the particular type and age of chicken being fed.


Avian Flu in Oregon - A recorded webinar hosted by OSU Extension's Small Farms Program, Dr. Ryan Scholz, Oregon Department of Agriculture’s state veterinarian, provided details about the disease, health concerns for people and other animals, prevention/biosecurity and the quarantines. Recorded May 19, 2022.

Processing and Marketing Poultry

Oregon Farm Direct Marketing: Selling Eggs - Do you produce and sell eggs directly to consumers? If so, there are specific labeling and handling requirements that you need to follow to qualify for the farm-direct licensing exemption and stay legal. This publication outlines these requirements and provides guidance on how to sell high-quality eggs to your customers.

Best Practices for Open-Air Poultry Slaughter - Oregon poultry producers who meet certain conditions can slaughter chicken, turkey and other birds in an open-air setting. But they still must meet requirements for sanitation, monitoring, recordkeeping and more. These resources can help poultry farmers operate in a safe, sanitary and environmentally sound manner.

Labeling Requirements under Oregon's 1000 Bird Exemption - If you are processing and selling under Oregon's 1000 bird exemption, you are required to attach a label to each package with the information from ODA listed in this publication.  

Meat and Poultry Processing Regulations in Oregon: A Short Guide - Federal law requires that meat and poultry are processed at a federally-inspected facility to be sold as human food. The law contains some limited exceptions allowing the sale of uninspected meat and poultry. However, with only one small exception (discussed in this guide), Oregon law requires that to be sold as food, meat and poultry species must be processed in a state-approved and state-licensed facility.

Composting of Poultry Offal Demonstration Project - This document discusses developing a successful composting process of poultry offal to produce finished compost that is environmentally sound, economically feasible, and returns nutrients to the farm.


Looking for more information? Try the OSU Extension poultry website.