Courses

Incubation Course

Incubation Course and Chick Rearing

Chick rearing in a brooder

Raising Chicks

Our new incubation course which also covers chick rearing, is another in our series of poultry courses. This hatching course takes you on a step by step journey through everything you need to know about how to raise chicks. We then guide you through how to hatch baby chicks successfully. Our incubation course covers all aspects of how to hatch chicks whether you choose to use a broody hen or an egg incubator.

Why hatching your own chicks is safer

If you already keep chickens and would like to expand your flock it is a good idea to grow your own. Hatching chicks adds another dimension to your chicken keeping enjoyment. Raising your own chicks means that you can ensure that you know exactly how healthy they are. Buying birds in always has an unknown element as you can never know how well they have been raised. Doing it yourself involves less risk to your existing flock because you don’t add any possible disease from outside sources.

Hatching chicks is a Truly wondrous experience

We have been hatching chicks by using both incubators and broody hens for more years than we care to mention. Suffice to say that we are quite addicted because it is such a wonderful experience. Being responsible for incubating a chicken egg and for it to turn into a cute and fluffy chick is not all plain sailing. You need to have the right equipment and you need the right plan of action. Things can go wrong from time to time and our incubation course will help you through all of them.

Our Chick Hatching course is new

We have been running chicken keeping courses for some time but we felt that the time was right to step back in time and teach people how to produce and rear chicks. This incubation course has been in the planning stage for about a year but we have finally polished it enough to publish it. It is somewhat longer than our original course as it goes through different life phases, all of which need clear explanation. Young chicks are very delicate so do need special care. These phases all present their own particular action points. As with all living things, there are challenges to overcome and we cover these in full detail in our hatching course.

Brief Hatching Course Outline

  • Incubators and their features
  • Broody hens – how to tell
  • Looking after your broody
  • Hatching eggs
  • Sourcing eggs
  • Incubator settings
  • Humidity
  • The hatching process
  • Brooder equipment and the dangers
  • Feeding your chicks
  • Troubleshooting the hatch
  • Chick First Aid
  • Growing chicks
  • Sexing your chicks
  • Everything you need up to 2 weeks old and beyond
  • Much much more besides

The incubation and chick rearing course is designed to be very comprehensive and yet very easy to understand. We have split it into self-contained bite-sized chunks so that they can be leisurely learned over a nice cup of coffee. Each lesson includes a quiz to test your expanding knowledge along the way.

Metallic Join now icon for our hatching course

Price of the course is £45 with immediate access – Join today!

There are a lot of useful online resources to do with the latest innovations in the poultry world. We can recommend registering on Poultry World to read their news articles as poultry keeping is always evolving.

Poultry Courses

Our Poultry Courses are Your Shortcut to chicken Enlightenment

We have been running Chicken Keeping Courses for over 10 years now and we are now expanding into other kinds of related poultry courses. Our courses are designed to offer the sort of information that we were looking to find when we first started keeping chickens. We found that even though we bought many many books on the subject, they still left gaping holes in what we wanted (or ought) to know. Most of our questions went unanswered, even questions we didn’t have a clue that we SHOULD be asking. This page is somewhat of an introduction for what we are now doing.

Why do you need to take a course?

Well quite simply – you don’t. Your alternative is to scavenge loads of information from Google, Facebook, websites, blog posts, videos, Youtube and good old books. If you have already started on this alternative plan, you will no doubt be wading through mountains of dead ends, and piecemeal information. Then you will need to collate it into some sort of reference. All well and good. However, you will have noticed that there are loads of armchair experts on these various channels – so who do you believe? Who or what is the best source of information – and by that we mean – correct information. How do you know which information is dangerous, expensive, or even a total waste of time. Our courses have cut through all the dross, misinformation and plain lunacy so that you can start your new venture from a position of power. Knowledge is power as they say.

Our Poultry courses are now online

Our poultry courses are online offerings. We have sourced a professional learning management system like they use in schools, universities and colleges to power our courses so they run brilliantly and efficiently. This gives our students a great learning experience.

Great content

We have crammed masses of information into our poultry courses so that no stone is unturned. Our message has no guff and no fluff – no frustration and no hassle. The content is clear and concise and very easily understood. Our poultry keeping courses are broken down into nice bite size chunks and each lesson is followed by a quiz to test your increasing knowledge. Each self-contained lesson can be studied over a very leisurely cup of coffee.

Benefits to you

You get access to convenient and accurate information. Time is precious, so why waste it going round in circles? Getting the equipment right first time is a game changer and won’t hurt your pocket as much as failing to understand the needs of your chickens. Getting it right means you spend less time trying to make a silk purse out of a sows ear.

Benefits to your chickens

Your chickens will be happier, healthier and safer.

foundation Chicken Keeping Course – Online

Cost: £45

Typical Brown Hen

Aimed at beginners but also those who want to get more involved and knowledgeable with their chickens.


You will Learn:

  • What sort of coop is beneficial to both you and your chickens.
  • What kinds of runs are good buys and those that are definitely not.
  • What equipment you absolutely need.
  • What equipment is ill advised.
  • What equipment will save you time and money in the long run.
  • Cleaning – when, and how often.
  • Disinfecting.
  • Pest control and predator avoidance.
  • Which products you need and what you don’t.
  • Maintaining good health and welfare of your birds.
  • How to spot illnesses.
  • Chicken first aid.
  • Avoiding vets bills, but know when and why you need to call a vet.
  • How to spot a cockerel so you don’t get scammed by unscrupulous sellers.
  • What to feed and how and why.
  • The law on chickens.
  • The rules on egg sales.
  • Chicken breeds and who lays what.
  • Chicken behaviour – good and bad.
  • The pecking order – yes it’s a thing!
  • Avian influenza precautions and legal obligations
  • This is just a very small snapshot of what we cover

Incubation and Chick rearing Course – Online

Cost: £45

Chick Hatching Course

Aimed at those who would like to know how to incubate your own chicks. Includes guidance in how to raise chicks correctly and successfully.


You Will Learn:

  • How to use different methods such as natural or artificial incubation.
  • How to select your hatching eggs
  • How to prepare your fertile eggs for incubation.
  • The various types of incubators – the good and the bad.
  • How to run your incubator and what the settings need to be.
  • How to manage your incubator for each stage of incubation and hatching.
  • How to monitor your eggs during the incubation phase.
  • What to expect on hatching day.
  • Incubator and brooder electrical safety.
  • How to deal with a broody hen and what sort of conditions suit her and the chicks best.
  • How to provide the correct conditions to ensure the survival of your delicate chicks
  • How to ensure that they come to no harm
  • What they need as food and how to provide the basics for a good start in life
  • How to spot abnormalities in chicks and how to successfully fix the most common types.
  • Ongoing chick care up to the age of 2 weeks and beyond.
  • How to tell the difference between hens and cockerels.

Face to Face chicken Keeping Course

Cost: £45 per student or £85 for 2 students as you can share notes

Poultry Keeping chicken

Aimed at beginners and those who want to expand their knowledge of chickens and their needs


You will Learn:

  • We are not currently doing any face-to-face courses due to Covid 19 and also the higher biosecurity requirements of the current Avian Influenza rules
  • The syllabus is broadly similar to the online version, but due to time constraints we cannot do the course in as great a depth as the online version.
  • We do have a section whereby we have a very hands-on session with chickens
  • How to assess the health of a chicken based on what you can see, hear and smell.
  • The course has the added advantage of light refreshments included.
  • Our face to face course is more interactive as questions can be asked immediately.
  • We plan for it to last for 3 and a half hours but we generally overrun.
  • The social aspect makes this version of our course very enjoyable for both us and you.
  • When things calm down in terms of Covid and Avian Influenza we will be starting the face-to-face courses back up again.

Reviews

We have been privileged to receive the comments below from our students

What Others Have Said

Hen Keeping Course
By: Ann Burt

Really useful

Outstanding
By: Paul Lawless

I have been considering keeping chickens for some time. I have read books, googled information and watched loads on YouTube but this course has been a revelation. Really well structured, all the right information you need on health, housing, feeding, anatomy, breeds etc etc. I have really enjoyed it and recommend to anyone considering doing the same. Now I am setting up and ready to take in my first girls in a couple of weeks. I would not have had the confidence to do this without this brilliant course.

Best way to learn about chickens
By: Brigitte Koopmann

I loved the course and learned so much. You cant find anything near it via books or youtube clips. I highly recommend this course and it is worth every penny. You can feel how much these people adore and care for their chickens. Herzliche Grüße und vielen Dank

Extremely useful course
By: Lauren Driver

This is a great course for anyone looking into getting chickens or to help refresh/ give advice for people who already have chickens. Lots of useful information for different methods on how to house and care for chickens. Definitely would recommend.

Extremely useful and informative
By: Sharon Parry

This course has given me a good broad base of information I need in order to start off my chicken journey as well prepared as possible. Lots of useful information and tips, which I will be following. Can't wait to get started.

Eggcelent Course
By: Thomas Clarkson

I had high eggs-pectations of this course and it was definitely worth it. The yolks on you if you don't get this course. lots of helpful information.

Great course
By: Judith Bye

I decided to take this course before taking the plunge and rehoming some rescue hens. I have completely changed my mind on the coop and run size after completing the course and I am now looking forward to getting some rescue hens. There is so much more to keeping chickens than I thought and this course provides you with that knowledge. Definitely worth taking.

Chickenpedia
By: Sue Woodhead

This course was super informative. Since doing the course I now have my first 4 rescue chickens and it helped me prepare for their arrival. I have referred to the lessons since collecting them and it has made me more confident. My girls (Whitney, Britney, Kylie and Missy) have had a really good transition and settled in well.

A Really Great Course!
By: Carolyn McCormick

I highly recommend this course to anyone who is interested in keeping chickens. It is crammed full of most useful facts and practical advice from experts who are passionate about chickens and keen to share their knowledge and experience with other interested parties.

Very useful course, so glad I took it!
By: Suzanna Mavity

I bought this course online as I want to get some chickens for the garden. I’m so glad I did this before buying anything, it completely change my mind and perspective on equipment and it has saved me a lot of bad decisions! So useful.

Excellent Course
By: Stacey Melia

After completing the course I would definitely recommend it to anyone who is considering getting chickens. It covers every aspect of what is required and gives easy to understand advice and information in nice bite sized chunks so that you don’t feel overwhelmed. I discovered there is a lot more to keeping healthy chickens than I thought and this course will prove invaluable going forward.

Great Course
By: Charlotte Stray

I have learned a great deal from this course and have already recommended it to a friend. Anyone thinking of keeping chickens should take this course.

Fantastic course
By: Louise Clifford

Well worth the money! I have learnt so much from this interactive course which I'd never have been able to do by reading books. I feel much more confident and prepared to start my chicken keeping journey. Highly recommend.

Brilliant Course!
By: Julia Holmes

The Online Chicken Keeping Course is such a good course for someone thinking about keeping chickens. There is so much to consider and this course covers it all, set out in an informative and easy to understand method. It is extremely good value, considering the amount of content. I cannot recommend it more highly

Very informative course.
By: Nick Wright

I have read several books on basic chicken keeping, but I have found this course to be the most comprehensive. I have changed my plans and moved away from an Eglu coop due to the advice given on the course. I also found the day-to-day sections useful to help work out how much time I would need to spend on daily/weekly cleaning etc. The advice on the different types of bedding was especially useful. I have made a note to purchase hemp or Probed bedding with some bio-dry to make cleaning easier.


Chicken Keeping Courses

join our online Poultry keeping course Today

become your own chicken Keeping expert –

Buy now for Immediate Start – See Details Below

Our Chicken Keeping Courses Details

Due to UK wide Coronavirus restrictions we are not running our face-to-face chicken keeping courses at the moment. HOWEVER—we have produced an online version which went live on the 1st December 2020 – see below. Face to face courses will restart as soon as the situation has improved.

Why do I need to take a chicken keeping course?

  • Do you enjoy learning new skills?
  • Have you always wanted to keep chickens but lack the knowledge and skills to do so?
  • Are you thinking that your garden is not suitable for chicken keeping?
  • If so, we have a poultry keeping course that is right up your alley.

Getting chickens before learning how to keep them is like putting the cart before the horse…

Keeping chickens is very enjoyable but unless you get your equipment and poultry keeping skills up to scratch then it could end up an expensive and stressful experience. It’s always wise to act on any new venture from a position of knowledge and caring for chickens is no different. Getting chickens before learning how to keep them is like putting the cart before the horse. Here is where our courses for chicken keeping come in. Our courses aim to give you a very solid foundation in how to care for chickens and help you make sensible and cost effective equipment choices. The courses will give you that all-important confidence boost that you are doing it right. Animals deserve the best care and the best conditions but doing it efficiently will also make YOU happy too.

Reading books and loitering around Facebook poultry groups or browsing the internet can only go so far before you think that you’re “drowning” in unsubstantiated opinion and conflicting comment. You only have to spend a few hours on FB before you realise there are LOTS of conflicts and LOTS of poorly and unanswered questions. Most of the comments are regurgitated drivel that have no basis in fact and plenty that are actually downright dangerous. If you love chickens, you will do both you, and your chickens, a huge favour by becoming skilled in chicken husbandry and care.

It is not just the equipment you need to get right, so our poultry keeping courses cover other aspects too. We have answers to many many questions – even those you never thought you needed to ask! These courses are therefore literally a huge treasure trove of chicken information.

  • How difficult can it be? Avoid the pitfalls that can make your chickens sick
  • Choosing the right equipment that will save you precious time and money – get it RIGHT FIRST TIME
  • Correct feeding and care of your chickens – to keep them in tip-top health – and not killing them with kindness
  • How to source and spot healthy chickens – learn when you should walk away from a sale
  • Know when it is essential to visit a vet. Save on vet visits when you can safely treat at home instead
  • Avoid scammers who could sell you cockerels – be able to spot one a mile off
  • Techniques for how to spot a sick chicken, before it’s too late to help
  • Avoiding predators – take your chickens off the take-away menu
  • Best way to tackle pest and parasite control that doesn’t require a bonfire
  • The laws you need to know
  • Who can you sell eggs to, and where
  • Learn how chickens tick (inside and out) and know how they communicate
  • Be amazed at what you thought you knew – but didn’t
  • Prepare to see chickens and other birds in a whole new light
  • All this and much much more…..

We answer all these questions and literally hundreds more. The course will actually save you money, as you can avoid choosing equipment that will be totally useless or even a burden to you. We have made all the silly AND very expensive mistakes, so you won’t have to! With any pet, if you don’t get the basics right, it can turn into a stressful or expensive experience – or BOTH! For example: The single most expensive piece of equipment is your coop. Buying a cheap coop is a bad move and we explain why in our course. This is just one tiny aspect of a whole kaleidoscope of vital information we cover.

Chickens are a complete joy to own. You can easily enhance that joy by becoming a knowledgeable and skilled keeper

We offer the most comprehensive courses on chicken keeping on the internet.

Choose an actual expert to guide you

Let’s face it, we all have busy lives and we all have an eye for a bargain. Trawling the internet for freely available and confusing or contradictory information on “tinterweb” may sound simple. Yes it is, but how much of this information is actually harmful, illegal, or total gobble-de-gook. Social media is another rich source of “armchair experts” who learn from masters of hearsay and chinese whispers. We regularly see regurgitated “facts” from an “expert” on Dr Social Media who only actually got chickens a week ago. Social media is literally teeming with bad and harmful advice. If enough people spout it then it must be right – yes? – well definitely no. So many chickens are harmed by following the foolhardy advice just on the topic of feeding alone.

Reading books is a good resource, but how many books actually stop short of getting to the information you actually need? They are just glossy overviews which leave you asking for more. So you buy another book and other. We have done exactly the same thing because we have shelves full of them. It’s disheartening. Books that are filled with stuff you don’t need or repeat the same advice but in a slightly different format with different pictures. They still leave gaps in the knowledge you need. What coop to buy? Which products to use? Will it save me time and money? Most importantly they don’t tell you what NOT to buy.

Your time is valuable, so disappearing down the proverbial rabbit hole of unhelpful drivel is just totally wasting your efforts.

Our chicken keeping classes are designed to help you cut through all that guff and learn the subject, in depth. You will learn from experts in chicken care in the quickest and most efficient way possible.

It is so simple to become your own chicken expert with our help. Get it done quickly and get it done right.

What types of Courses Do we run?

We are currently offering two foundation poultry keeping courses but we have plans for a more advanced course in chicken keeping later on in 2022. We also have an Incubation and Chick Rearing Course for those yearning towards the next step in chicken keeping. An advanced course is on the cards for 2022 to cover illness diagnosis techniques and treatments in depth. Our current offerings are below.

BRAND NEW – Online Chicken Keeping Course -with Immediate Access

As of 1st December 2020 we sky-rocketed chicken keeping into the 21st Century. We launched our online courses for keeping chickens. Due to Covid we have had to re-think what we do and consequently how we do it. So we have decided to go national to offer the benefit of our experience to as wide a base as possible by offering online training in poultry keeping.

The online course is able to cover much more depth as we do not have the same time constraints as with a face-to-face course. We have used a professional learning management system like colleges and universities use to ensure that the ease of navigation and quality of content delivery is as good as it can be.

We like to think we have done ourselves (and you) proud with this professionally produced course and we guarantee that you will find out things that you never knew you didn’t know!!

There is nothing stopping you from enjoying the benefits of this course from the comfort of your own home AND at your own pace.

The Cost is £45 Per Student

How long does the Online courses for chicken Keeping Last?

Sit down and relax while having a leisurely cup of coffee and take each lesson. There are 18 in all which will take roughly about an hour each. The course is broken down into nice bite sized chunks.

Quizzes along the way will test your increasing knowledge and help to reinforce your skill level.

How often do we run the course

The online course is “open all hours” as they say. You can start at any time. You get immediate access after checkout.

You have access to the course at your leisure for 12 months from your payment date.

In-House
Chicken Keeping Course

We have been running these courses for over 10 years and have taught many students, vets included. We find them an enjoyable experience and it gives you the opportunity to enjoy the company of other potential chicken keepers. These are usually quite lively courses and we certainly love doing them. If you can travel to Cheshire to take this half day course then you will enjoy it, but if not, then you may want to consider the online version.

We cover the same ground as the online version but there is the additional aspect of instant feedback with student questions along the way. You also get to handle chickens in the way that is not possible with our online version.
This course includes light refreshments and a full set of course notes to take away with you.

Please note we are not running the face to face courses at the moment due to Covid as it not safe for us – or you – to do so.

The Cost for this course is £45.00 per Student
or £85 for 2 as you can share notes

How long does the course last?

The face to face courses for keeping chickens lasts 3-4 hours (yes really). We have crammed a lot in to make sure you get your moneys-worth

There is also a practical hands-on element where we handle and examine chickens themselves.

How often do we run the courses

We normally run these a couple of times a month, dates are posted on website, but we are keeping a mailing list just for course enquiries should you wish to be informed when one is scheduled.

We can also run them on a day to suit you if you wish for a minimum of 2 guests. Something to consider if you can’t make any scheduled dates.

How to book

If you need to ask further questions before booking please ask us via our Contact Form here

Please note that our in-house version courses cover a lot of stuff and are not suitable for children under 14. We find that children tend to get too fidgety and upset the other participants. Our guests are given plenty of “training”. This means that you can confidently pass on your newly gained knowledge to any youngsters when you return home. The online version can of course be a family affair but they are all aimed at adults.

Simply book by clicking the buttons above – or below. You can also book by going to our web shop page and choosing the course from there.


If you are still hesitating, we are beginning to get some great feedback. Read comments below from our Poultry Keeping students for which we are very grateful

What Others Have Said

Hen Keeping Course
By: Ann Burt

Really useful

Outstanding
By: Paul Lawless

I have been considering keeping chickens for some time. I have read books, googled information and watched loads on YouTube but this course has been a revelation. Really well structured, all the right information you need on health, housing, feeding, anatomy, breeds etc etc. I have really enjoyed it and recommend to anyone considering doing the same. Now I am setting up and ready to take in my first girls in a couple of weeks. I would not have had the confidence to do this without this brilliant course.

Best way to learn about chickens
By: Brigitte Koopmann

I loved the course and learned so much. You cant find anything near it via books or youtube clips. I highly recommend this course and it is worth every penny. You can feel how much these people adore and care for their chickens. Herzliche Grüße und vielen Dank

Extremely useful course
By: Lauren Driver

This is a great course for anyone looking into getting chickens or to help refresh/ give advice for people who already have chickens. Lots of useful information for different methods on how to house and care for chickens. Definitely would recommend.

Extremely useful and informative
By: Sharon Parry

This course has given me a good broad base of information I need in order to start off my chicken journey as well prepared as possible. Lots of useful information and tips, which I will be following. Can't wait to get started.

Eggcelent Course
By: Thomas Clarkson

I had high eggs-pectations of this course and it was definitely worth it. The yolks on you if you don't get this course. lots of helpful information.

Great course
By: Judith Bye

I decided to take this course before taking the plunge and rehoming some rescue hens. I have completely changed my mind on the coop and run size after completing the course and I am now looking forward to getting some rescue hens. There is so much more to keeping chickens than I thought and this course provides you with that knowledge. Definitely worth taking.

Chickenpedia
By: Sue Woodhead

This course was super informative. Since doing the course I now have my first 4 rescue chickens and it helped me prepare for their arrival. I have referred to the lessons since collecting them and it has made me more confident. My girls (Whitney, Britney, Kylie and Missy) have had a really good transition and settled in well.

A Really Great Course!
By: Carolyn McCormick

I highly recommend this course to anyone who is interested in keeping chickens. It is crammed full of most useful facts and practical advice from experts who are passionate about chickens and keen to share their knowledge and experience with other interested parties.

Very useful course, so glad I took it!
By: Suzanna Mavity

I bought this course online as I want to get some chickens for the garden. I’m so glad I did this before buying anything, it completely change my mind and perspective on equipment and it has saved me a lot of bad decisions! So useful.

Excellent Course
By: Stacey Melia

After completing the course I would definitely recommend it to anyone who is considering getting chickens. It covers every aspect of what is required and gives easy to understand advice and information in nice bite sized chunks so that you don’t feel overwhelmed. I discovered there is a lot more to keeping healthy chickens than I thought and this course will prove invaluable going forward.

Great Course
By: Charlotte Stray

I have learned a great deal from this course and have already recommended it to a friend. Anyone thinking of keeping chickens should take this course.

Fantastic course
By: Louise Clifford

Well worth the money! I have learnt so much from this interactive course which I'd never have been able to do by reading books. I feel much more confident and prepared to start my chicken keeping journey. Highly recommend.

Brilliant Course!
By: Julia Holmes

The Online Chicken Keeping Course is such a good course for someone thinking about keeping chickens. There is so much to consider and this course covers it all, set out in an informative and easy to understand method. It is extremely good value, considering the amount of content. I cannot recommend it more highly

Very informative course.
By: Nick Wright

I have read several books on basic chicken keeping, but I have found this course to be the most comprehensive. I have changed my plans and moved away from an Eglu coop due to the advice given on the course. I also found the day-to-day sections useful to help work out how much time I would need to spend on daily/weekly cleaning etc. The advice on the different types of bedding was especially useful. I have made a note to purchase hemp or Probed bedding with some bio-dry to make cleaning easier.


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