Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Poultry Schooner

We looked at the mobile shelters used by our good friends at Cognito Farms. Then we shamelessly stole their basic plan.

We found an old boat trailer that was too screwed up to carry a boat around and scrounged through our various scrap piles and the ruins of our old shelter.

This is the result.

We planed to build it one Saturday. We finished it after two full weekends. I'll admit to muttering a few four letter words in the process.

It is a collection of used materials set mostly at 87 degree angles. Any competent carpenter would be appalled,  but the chickens seem to like it just fine.

The back part, under the tarp, is a varmint proof (we hope) roosting area. The chickens get shut in there at night. We let them out in the daytime. Food and water is outside. The chickens access the nest boxes from the inside. We open the doors from the outside to collect the eggs.

We don't need to clean the shelter, other than the nest boxes sometimes. The floor is cage metal so the poop just falls throught onto the ground.

We just move the whole thing to a new place every few days. We have a hitch on the tractor three point so we can move it without even getting off the tractor.

At the moment we have twenty something hens and a couple of roosters. The shelter can accommodate more birds than that, up to maybe fifty at the most.