From what I can tell there are 3 important steps:
- Selecting your chickens (did you know hens start laying eggs at 5 months old?)
- Housing (portable pens are the way to go - "Portable pens make keeping chickens easier and less messy or smelly. The manure is spread around for just a day or two, and then the pen is moved so that your fowl can eat the bugs and fertilize the next patch of lawn or pasture.")
- Feeding (whole grains retain their nutritional value no matter what - "Whole grains retain all of their nutritional value, and nothing is ever wasted. What hits the ground does not dissolve. It stays there until a) it is eaten, b) it sprouts and is eaten, c) it sprouts, grows and is eaten. Either way, you win."