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Get an overview of backyard flocks, and some getting started resources, from NC State Extension and other state extension services.

NC State Extension resources

This article from N.C. Cooperative Extension covers all aspects of starting and managing a backyard or garden flock of chickens in North Carolina.
This resource can be viewed online or downloaded for free.

Other resources

A Small-Scale Agriculture Alternative: Poultry

This article from Virginia Cooperative Extension gives information on poultry production as a small-scale activity. It covers broilers, layers and waterfowl.
This resource can be viewed online or downloaded for free.
This self-paced online set of modules from the University of Arkansas is a good introduction. Create an account and self-register.

Management Guide for the Backyard Flock (Circular 969)

This article  from University of Georgia Extension covers most topics involved in managing a flock, including housing, diseases, growing and processing.

This resource can be viewed online or downloaded for free.

Small Flock Series: Managing a Family Chicken Flock

This article from Extension at the University of Missouri covers similar information to the University of Georgia Extension article, with added information about feed topics and behaviors to manage (for example, pecking).

This resource can be viewed online or downloaded for free.

Raising Fowl And Small Animals in Urban Areas

This article from Virginia Cooperative Extension offers guidance on issues specific to urban small flocks, including noise and odors, health and safety, and property values and appearances.

This resource can be downloaded for free.

If you have questions about general backyard flock management, contact an Area Specialized Agent for poultry or your county’s livestock agent.