About the Author

Gail Damerow

Gail Damerow is the author of The Chicken Encyclopedia, The Chicken Health Handbook, Hatching & Brooding Your Own Chicks, Storey’sGuide to Raising Chickens, Fences for Pasture and Garden, The Perfect Pumpkin, Ice Cream! The Whole Scoop, Your Chickens, and Your Goats. She is co-author of Draft Horses & Mules and The Backyard Homestead Guide to Raising Farm Animals, and is a regular contributor to Backyard Poultry and Countryside magazines. Gail lives in Tennessee where she and her husband Allan keep Nubian dairy goats as well as poultry, tend a sizable garden, and maintain a small orchard and a large woodlot. On their diversified small farm they seek independence and sustainability by growing and preserving much of what they eat and feed their livestock. Gail’s interest in gardening, canning and food preservation, and keeping poultry originated with visits to her maternal grandmother, who maintained a sizable garden and a large flock of laying hens. As a youngster Gail looked forward to having chickens of her own. At the age of ten she thought she was realizing her dream when a department store Easter Bunny handed her a small carton containing a single chick. At the time she and her family were moving cross-country in a travel trailer, and sharing the cramped space with a chick in a cardboard box did not sit well with her parents. When Gail came of age she sought out a place in the country where she could indulge her passion for poultry. She has been gardening and keeping chickens and other birds for more than four decades. Over the years she has raised many different breeds of bantams and large chickens, as well as guinea fowl, pheasants, peafowl, ducks, geese, and swans. She enjoys sharing the knowledge she has acquired over the years via her blogs, books, and magazine articles.
Read More

Articles by Gail Damerow

A Guide to Recognizing and Treating Chicken Foot Problems
October 12, 2021 · · Feed & Health

Two common chicken foot problems and leg ailments are leg mites and bumblefoot, both of which are easy to treat. Less common, but sometimes mistaken for either leg mites or bumblefoot, is a type of arthritis known as gout, which is far easier to prevent than to treat.

Read More
Feeding Backyard Chickens: 5 Mistakes to Avoid
September 27, 2021 · · Feed & Health

Nutritional deficiencies are a relatively rare problem for a flock of backyard chickens, ducks or other poultry. Of greater nutritional concern are the following five easily avoidable mistakes commonly made in feeding poultry.

Read More
What Killed My Chicken?
August 31, 2021 · · Coops

Keep a flock for long and sooner or later you’ll be asking yourself, “What killed my chicken?” Many marauders love our backyard chickens as much as we do, and each leaves a calling card that offers a clue as to which predator you’re dealing with.

Read More
How to Trim Chicken Beaks, Claws, and Spurs
August 13, 2021 · · Feed & Health

A chicken’s spurs, toenails, and beak are made of keratin, the same substance as your fingernails and toenails. And like your nails, they continually grow.

Read More
Keeping Guinea Fowl: Reasons to Love Them or Not
July 14, 2021 · · Poultry 101

Add to Favorites Guinea fowl undoubtedly spark more debates than any other barnyard poultry species. Some people love them, others despise them. What’s all the fuss about? Here are eight great …

Read More
Find the Best Automatic Chicken Door Opener
May 31, 2021 · · Coops

Add to Favorites An automatic chicken door is indispensable if you’re not always there to let your backyard chickens out in the morning and close them in at night to …

Read More
10 Common Mistakes New Poultry Owners Make With Chicks
May 25, 2021 · · Chickens 101

Most of the mistakes people make when starting out with baby chicks can easily be avoided with a little advanced preparation. Here are 10 typical errors and how to avoid them.

Read More
Fences: Keeping Chickens In & Predators Out
May 17, 2021 · · Coops

Add to Favorites Way back when I was ready to purchase my first house, high on my list of must-haves was a place to raise chickens. To make sure the …

Read More
Keep Biofilm Out Of Your Flock’s Drinking Water
May 6, 2021 · · Feed & Health

Add to Favorites Poultry drinkers that aren’t regularly scrubbed often develop bad-tasting biofilm that discourages drinking. Reduced drinking, especially during hot weather, can lead to dehydration, poor health, and fewer …

Read More
8 Reasons To Hatch Eggs In An Incubator
April 19, 2021 · · Eggs & Meat

Why on earth would anyone bother hatching eggs in an incubator when it’s so much easier to let a broody hen do all the work?

Read More