The Best Must-Read Backyard Chicken Books for Chicken Keepers

A few reliable, comprehensive chicken guides are indispensable for the backyard chicken farmer. Here are some of our favorite, most trusted must-read backyard chicken books. We sure love these funny and delightful animals!

How to Choose the Best Books for Backyard Chicken Keeping

Keeping chickens is becoming a more and more popular hobby. And why shouldn’t it be? After all, there’s nothing quite like fresh chicken eggs or home-grown meat in the freezer.

When it comes to backyard chicken-keeping, there’s plenty of advice out there. Unfortunately, you can’t go through all of it, or you won’t have time to care for your chickens! Instead, having a few reliable, physical sources of information on your bookshelf will prove invaluable when you’re raising chickens.

The following books have been tested and tried by hundreds of backyard chicken-keepers. These chicken experts provide a wealth of information. In fact, my family and I find ourselves turning to them again and again in our chicken endeavors.  

Why Build a Backyard Chicken-Keeping Home Library?

If you’ve raised any sort of livestock before, you probably know that you’ll always be learning something new. It seems that every year, a learning experience arises. From mites and lice to worms, from respiratory issues to sour crops, there’s always a new challenge to overcome.

However, when you have a few trusted guidebooks, you can go straight to the experts for advice. With a small library of dependable books, you won’t have to scroll the internet hoping for the right answers. (Though, of course, there can be great wisdom in learning from fellow chicken farmers online!)

Where to Get Backyard Chicken-Keeping Books

These are a few of my favorite places to buy chicken-keeping books. In fact, you can find many wonderful books on a variety of subjects on these helpful sites.

Must-Read Backyard Chicken Books

These must-read backyard chicken books are our most common go-to guides on the farm.

Storey’s Guide to Raising Chickens, 4th Edition: Breed Selection, Facilities, Feeding, Health Care, Managing Layers & Meat Birds By Gail Damerow 

Storey Publishing provides incredible reference guides for all kinds of homesteading endeavors, and Storey’s Guide to Raising Chickens is no exception. Gail Damerow draws on her decades of chicken experience to provide a guide that will equip you for each new challenge and question that you face. Whether you’re wondering about planning your coop, choosing your breeds, feeding your chickens, or marketing your eggs, this book is full of valuable information for anyone raising chickens.

The Chicken Health Handbook, 2nd Edition: A Complete Guide to Maximizing Flock Health and Dealing with Disease By Gail Damerow

Once again, Gail Damerow provides expert advice in this book about chicken health. This handbook dives into the science of chicken diseases and cures, but it’s simple enough for the layperson to understand. You can even find charts for diagnosing your chickens as well as guidance for administering medication to sick birds.

The Chicken Chick’s Guide to Backyard Chickens: Simple Steps for Healthy, Happy Hens by Kathy Shea Mormino

Next, in this beautifully illustrated guide, you’ll learn down-to-earth, simple steps for caring for your chickens. Kathy Shea Mormino covers all aspects of flock care. This sensible and funny book will provide trusted guidance for everything from starting your chicken hobby to housing to egg production.

Gardening with Chickens: Plans and Plants for You and Your Hens by Lisa Steele

Lisa Steele’s book combines a love of chickens with a love of gardening. What could be better? She believes that gardens and chickens can coexist and thrive, and she will show you how to do it! Topics include chickens and composting, aerating and tilling with chickens, and plants to avoid when you have chickens.

101 Chicken Keeping Hacks from Fresh Eggs Daily: Tips, Tricks, and Ideas for You by Lisa Steele

You won’t regret collecting this amazing book on natural chicken-keeping. This book is full of tips for keeping your chickens healthy naturally and keeping your expenses low at the same time. Some of the ideas she shares include homemade chicken feed and fodder, handmade chicken swings and scarecrows, and homemade salves for your birds.

The Homesteader’s Natural Chicken Keeping Handbook: Raising a Healthy Flock from Start to Finish by Amy Fewell

This all-around guide is aimed at the modern homesteader. In this book, Amy Fewell touches on nearly every aspect of chicken keeping on the homestead. From understanding chickens to creating your egg business to hatching chicks to cooping, this book will help your homestead get the full advantage of your chickens.

A Kid’s Guide to Keeping Chickens: Best Breeds, Creating a Home, Care and Handling, Outdoor Fun, Crafts and Treats by Melissa Caughey

Lastly, this colorful and fun book is aimed at making chicken-raising a delight for the youngest backyard chicken keepers. The crafts, recipes, and chicken-keeping advice are engaging for even elementary-aged kids. In short, this book truly helps children develop a love for these silly and wonderful animals.

Do you have chickens?

What are your biggest challenges with how to raise chickens? There’s so much to learn when it comes to these beautiful birds. I hope these books help you to enjoy the learning process, and above all, enjoy your chickens!

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