From chicken tractor to day-rangingPosted: August 18, 2010
- Transition most daily chores to weekly/monthly/quarterly.
- Enable remaining daily chore (egg collection) to be done by kids.
- Increase health of the birds. Hoping that more space means less pecking each other.
- Built a smaller coop meant to solely be a place to lay eggs and roost for the night. Protection from elements only, not predators. Self-imposed limit on the coop was it had to be made entirely from found materials. We used old political campaign signs as the wall/wings and roof, IKEA bed slats as framing lumber, etc. Local woodworker did the design work and let use use his awesome workshop.
- Added 1/4 acre of electronet fencing to protect from daily coyote visits and occasional raccoons. That’s enough pasture to not need to move the coop and fencing but once every 1-3 months, depending on the season.
- Added rebar posts with pinwheels to distract the local birds of prey. We get daily fly-bys from eagles, osprey, hawks…and owls each evening. They are beautiful, but I like to eat eggs.
- Added a range feeder that holds 50# of feed while keeping it dry. My daughter is wearing the top part as a hat in the nearby photo.
- Made my own 7-day waterer from an extra 5 gallon bucket and $1 chicken nipples (can’t believe I just wrote that) from Farmtek.
Here are some photos…