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Backyard nest eggs

"Backyard nest eggs" Continued...

Many who raise chickens simply want to know exactly where their food comes from. Instead of buying eggs that traveled 300 miles in a styrofoam carton to a supermarket, they want to walk 30 feet into their own coops. “It doesn’t get more local than your backyard,” Schneider said.

Chicken poop also acts as a natural fertilizer, and chickens serve as pest repellents by lunching on bugs. They also eliminate food waste because they eat almost any leftovers. But backyard chickens have one potential downside: neighborhood rancor. 

Worries range from chickens making too much noise to attracting rodents to decreasing property value. 

But both Schneider and Scott said all the complaints can be dismissed with factual information. For example, hens only ever let out a few clucks after laying an egg. Roosters are the noise culprits, and they are banned in most cities. No specific statistics prove backyard chickens decrease property value, nor do well-maintained chickens attract pests, the experts said. 

“It’s not so much ignorance, but a lack of education,” Schneider said.

People who eventually convert say their chickens have become part of the family, but that doesn’t keep them from occasionally ending up on the dinner table. 

Scott doesn’t eat his own chickens because it would traumatize his daughter, but Schneider has no problem “having a nice chicken dinner.” In fact, he likes eating his own chickens because they taste much better. 

“It tastes like a chicken should,” he said.

Sophia Lee
Sophia Lee

Sophia is a features reporter for WORLD Magazine. She graduated from the University of Southern California with degrees in print journalism and East Asian language and culture. She lives in Los Angeles with her cat, Shalom. Follow Sophia on Twitter @SophiaLeeHyun.


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