This picture shows the cost for feed and bedding. Now granted, I spent $137.91 of my feed costs on chick feed. I hatched around 600 chicks and not all of them left right away. I had to feed them while they were here, and that bill was much higher then I'd like it to be. This doesn't include the free bags of lettuce from a local restaurant, or countless loaves of stale bread and mushy fruit that neighbors gave us. It also leaves out kitchen scraps, what I gave them from the garden and the corn patch they decimated when they found a hole in the garden fence. Bad silkies!
The bedding cost doesn't take into account the hay that was given to me by a neighbor or hubby's uncle. Probably about 6 bales in all. We didn't need any sand for the runs this year. I also switched to shredded newspaper as bedding in one of the coops in the fall, which of course was free. Most of the bedding cost went for wood shavings although some was spent on DE and barn lime.
Our only major expense for equipment this year was running electric to 1 of the coops. The rest was simple repairs. No big expenses this year. Hay forks break, heat bulbs burned out and incubators needed new tubing. It was all simple stuff this year.
I logged 1,915 miles this year just driving to feed stores and poultry swaps. My auction trips account for 491 of those miles! That's a lot of driving! I guess that's the biggest problem with living in the middle of farm country, everything is so far away. Mileage can be cut down though by combining with other errands and of course if you're not going to auctions and swaps you wouldn't be driving as much.
I didn't include electric expenses even though heat lamps and incubators were running for all but November & December. I could probably find a few other things to add in, but I'm all taxed out! I'm scaling back a lot for the new season and expect expenses to drop considerably this year.
I have to admit that every year I look at the numbers and think "I didn't think I spent that much" Then as I go through them I find they were almost all necessities. So there you have it! This is exactly how much it costs to keep 80 chickens for 1 year.