Rochester couple rents chickens

Raising chickens in your backyard has become a growing trend in recent years, but what if you don’t want to commit to taking care of them year round?

Tim and Julie Johnson of Rochester are providing an opportunity to rent chickens. 

"We really loved keeping chickens," said Julie. "They were just so much fun."

What started off as a couple of hens, has now become a small business for this Rochester couple, Our Backyard Chicken.

"You want to know where your food is coming from, and I thought chickens would be a good way to do the eggs and give it a try," said Julie. "It’s very easy. A lot of our friends and family were interested but didn’t know if they wanted to commit year round."

Renting chickens gives people an opportunity to raise the hens without the constraint of caring for them year-round.

"We make it easy," said Tim.

Each rental includes a portable coop, two hens, a food and water dish, bedding, and enough feed to get started. 
They make it even easier by delivering everything to your home and picking it up when the lease is over.

"You can rent them and try to have them for a month and see how it goes," said Julie. "Otherwise you can rent them for a full season, which is typically spring or early summer through the fall. We pick them up beginning of November before it snows."

Families are also taking advantage of this opportunity as a way to teach their children.

"I think their learning a little bit of responsibility, we have to feed them, and learning how to care for the animals." said Kelly Erpelding, a renter’s nanny. "I think they’re just really liking to get outside and see the process of where eggs come from. I think they’re learning where their food comes too, which is awesome."

Rochester residents are allowed to have up to three hens on a property. They also need a permit, which costs $20.

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