Four major sections are devoted to 'Getting started', 'Keeping your chickens', 'Specialist information' and 'Problems'. Getting started: choosing a breed, the popular breeds (30 are highlighted), hybrids, other poultry, the various ways of acquiring chickens (including hatching your own). Keeping your chickens: daily care, seasonal care, feeding and watering, housing, security from predators (two-legged and four-legged), vermin (rats/mice, foxes, mink/stoats/weasels, pigeons, magpies/crows), laying (types of eggs, selling, regulations), first aid. Specialist information: anatomy and plumage, colours and markings, breeding (reproduction, mating, incubation, hatching, rearing), showing, conservation, dispatching (methods of killing, dressing). Problems: common diseases (includes simple diagnosis charts), biology, health, nutrition, bird 'flu facts. Step-by-step procedures will feature where relevant, in time-honoured Haynes style, and will include construction of a poultry house and brooder and how to use an incubator correctly.