The Best Chicken Sitter Checklist

If you own chickens you have probably noticed that as much as you’d like them to be, they just aren’t that good at packaging their own eggs and delivering them to your fridge. Nor are they all that good at cutting open bags of feed and filling up their feeder. Not to mention the water! I can’t keep them from pooping in it, letting alone getting them to turn on the hose and replacing their water when it runs out.

So, while I am out of town, on occasion I find myself needing help collecting eggs, watering and feeding my egg laying friends.

Here is a simple and easy checklist of steps to care for my chickens while I am away.

But first of all – THANK YOU! I appreciate you taking care of my flock when I am away. I hope you enjoy the eggs as much as my family does.

Step 1: Egg Collecting

this is where the magic happens

My hens have four nesting boxes that they lay in. To collect them, simply lift up the lid to the nesting boxes and grab the eggs. Be careful, the lid is heavy! During the winter time the eggs can freeze if left overnight. As of the writing of this blog, our chickens are actually still laying anywhere from 3 to 10 eggs per day. The fact that it is January is pretty awesome.

Each nesting box also has a fake egg in it. You can tell, because they are a little dirty, and have 3 dots on them. I keep them in there to help reduce egg eating.

It’s best to wait until dusk to collect the eggs. That way they are finished laying for the day, and have probably gone to bed for the night so you don’t have to worry about them escaping.

fake egg
can you spot the fake egg?

Step 2: Check the Water

the buffet section of the coop

During the winter I have a 2 gallon heated watering bucket hanging in the coop. The chickens go through about a gallon per day. You’ll need to fill the water each night. I left a couple empty gallon water jugs in the shed since the watering hoses on our property are turned off for the winter. You’ll need to fill up the jugs at home prior to coming to check on the chickens and collect the eggs.

Step 3: Check the Feeder

only the best for our ladies

The chickens will go through a full feeder of food every 3 to 4 days. I keep extra bags of feed in the shed. One bag will fill the feeder twice.

Step 4: Enjoy the Eggs!

That’s it! I always replace the bedding before I have somebody watch my ladies, so no need to worry about cleaning.

Last tip: If some of the chickens happen to escape when you open then door, and you are unable to catch them – no big deal. If you leave the front door open, they will go back in to roost as soon as it starts to get dark. You just have to go back and close the door when they have all returned.

If you forget to close the door, there is a good chance they may get eaten by predators during the night. On more than one occasion I have seen a fox in our back yard eyeing the coop. Please do not forget to close and lock the door to keep the ladies safe and sound.

Thanks for keeping us safe!

Have you ever had a chick sitter watch your chickens while you were out of town? Did I miss something? Please comment below.

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