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Chicks a popular gift for Easter, but how do you raise them?


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WOODS CROSS — Perhaps kids like chickens because they are the closest living relative to Tyrannosaraus Rex. Or perhaps it's because they're cute, fuzzy and fit in the palm of your hand. Either way, the chicks you may buy for your kids as an Easter gift will certainly grow up to be chickens. What do you do when they grow up?

At the American Farm Store in Woods Cross they sell about a thousand of these chicks every season.

"A lot of people will have them follow them around like they are their dog," said justin Beach, who works at American Farm. But the chickens, of course, lay farm fresh eggs.

"Now I would say we have more people coming in for the eggs instead of the Easter-type deal," Beach said.

So if you don't know much chicks, what should you know when they turn from chicks to chickens? Beach said the chickens are full-grown in about two months and live between eight and ten years. You can expect them to produce eggs for about five years.

Why all the interest in raising backyard chickens?

But beware: Chickens need companionship in order to flourish.

"They are flock animals," Beach said. "A lot of times if you get just one, they won't survive because they're lonely."

On the other hand, they can really keep the population of bugs around your house in check, since this is a favorite snack for chickens.

Of course, you can always go for the Easter Bunny. But Beach says the Easter chicks are in. "They're probably more popular than people think."

In the last few years, dozens of cities across the Wastach Front have changed their ordinances to allow chickens. Check with your city before you decide to purchase and raise one.

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Lori Prichard

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