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Well, things are getting worse. So to add to the backyard garden, we are gonna raise some chickens soon.

First thing we need is someplace to keep them. So I am building a chicken tractor. Sometimes also called a chicken ark. It is basically a movable pin with an open bottom that can be moved around so the chickens can scratch, aerate and fertilize the soil in different areas of the garden.

Here is my first video on the build. I will keep adding videos to this as I go.
 

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Great video, I can't wait to see more. I am about to get some chickens, too. I haven't started on my coop yet, though. I'll have to post some pics or maybe do a video too. I am not near the carpenter you are though, so don't expect anything too fancy from me! :)

I am still trying to decide on a coop design. Keep the videos coming, they are a big help to people starting out with chickens. Thanks!!!!!!!!

BTW. How do you figure out how to cut those intricate angles in the 2x4's? I can never figure out things like that.
 

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Deo VIndice
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Cool Deal! Gotta admit, the title did have me mind wonderin and scratin' my head!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
BTW. How do you figure out how to cut those intricate angles in the 2x4's? I can never figure out things like that.
Don't tell my high school math teacher, but I actually used geometry. LOL
http://library.thinkquest.org/20991/geo/ietri.html

AB=5' .25"
BC=5' .25"
AC=44" (this is where I messed up - should have been 41"):xeye:

Angle A and C are equal because it is basically an isosceles triangle. Anyways get the top angle, then figure out the cut. Now you know why I ran out of time building it. ROFL!


Of course I forgot to factor in the stupid widths of the 2x4's on the bottom and just wound up eyeballing it in the end. LOL Don't tell my Dad. That 71 year old "jack leg" carpenter will come over here and make me redo the whole thing.

I ain't joking!! :eek::eek::eek:
 

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trois pour cent
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Josiah, one of the nicest, most fruitful gardens I've ever seen belonged to an older lady who divided her 1/4 acre garden into two parts. It was rectangular with a gated fence down the middle, dividing it into two squares.
One one side she kept the chickens and on the other she kept the garden. Each year, she traded sides.
The alternating created such a rich, fertile soil.
Good luck with your project.


 

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USMC Veteran 84 - 01
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Don't want to hijack your thread. I can post a picture of mine if you like. Maybe give you some ideas. I have 5 of these w/ 1 rooster and 3 hens per. It is very easy for 1 person to move. Let me know.

Chris
 

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That's really neat. How many chickens do you think will fit in a tractor that size?

I have 8 birds. The rooster is only a few months old, 2 hens will be 2 years in March and the other 5 hens will be 1 year in March. I keep them for eggs but want to start making babies at home (hence the acquisition of the rooster). I've had them in a fenced area that's approximately 24X30 and those birds have eaten every blade of grass or hint of weed in the entire pen. I am not as concerned about the missing grass but I want them to dine grass instead of feed (not to mention the feed is $25/50#) so I want to move them around a bit. Would one tractor hold all 8?


Thanks for sharing!
 

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Bratach Bhan Chlann Aoidh
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I've just started to make one out of (25mm )1" square section steel.
The hoose is 1200mm x 1200mm x 1200mm.
The run is 1800mm x 1200mm x 1200mm.
They join together.
The metal frame will be covered by small square wire netting. The hoose will be roofed and solid side with ventilation.

Then Christmas got in the way.
 

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I went a slightly different route. Instead of moving the chickens around by hand, I let the chickens move themselves. I built two coops, each in a separate fenced pasture. Each coop has an automatic door that opens in the morning and closes at night. The chickens free range during the day (they return to the coop many times during the day to drink water or lay eggs) and then they roost in the coop at night, secure behind the locked door.







 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
Don't want to hijack your thread. I can post a picture of mine if you like. Maybe give you some ideas. I have 5 of these w/ 1 rooster and 3 hens per. It is very easy for 1 person to move. Let me know.

Chris
Absolutely, we are all about sharing information. As long as that information is on the topic of a chicken tractor, I would think that it would be welcomed.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
That's really neat. How many chickens do you think will fit in a tractor that size?

I have 8 birds. The rooster is only a few months old, 2 hens will be 2 years in March and the other 5 hens will be 1 year in March. I keep them for eggs but want to start making babies at home (hence the acquisition of the rooster). I've had them in a fenced area that's approximately 24X30 and those birds have eaten every blade of grass or hint of weed in the entire pen. I am not as concerned about the missing grass but I want them to dine grass instead of feed (not to mention the feed is $25/50#) so I want to move them around a bit. Would one tractor hold all 8?


Thanks for sharing!
That is what the chicken "tractor" is for. Move them to a new place in your garden or lawn each week or two and let the chickens eat and claw up the new area. It is sort of like free ranging them.

Up to you. I have heard that each bird needs about 3-5 feet. Counting the bottom and top layers of the tractor mine should have about 40 square feet. That should be enough for 8 chickens, but I would not over crowd them. Maybe 6 would be the maximum for this tractor? Maybe you could build a bigger one that would be better for the eight?

For me 4 hens will be in this tractor with the added room for a rooster later on.
 

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USMC Veteran 84 - 01
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Here is what I came up with. I tried using 2X4 but for the room I wanted the chickens to have it was just too heavy to move by myself. This one is built out of 1X3 and it is sturdy and I can move it into any location by myself. As I said before I have 5 of these w/ 1 rooster and 3 hens per.

Chris
 

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Hi stoneunhenged, I really feel your chicken house is more suited to my needs, could you PM me with more details or links please ... auto door sounds great.

Thank you

Cheers


:)
 

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Another great video! You inspired me to start on my coop today. I got it framed up but still need to put a roof and siding on it. Thanks for making these videos.

P.S. I opted to not incorporate those intricate cuts into my coop. I think I would have wasted more wood trying to do it than I used in the entire coop! :)
 

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Hi stoneunhenged, I really feel your chicken house is more suited to my needs, could you PM me with more details or links please ... auto door sounds great.

Thank you

Cheers


:)
I'm glad you like it. You can get the automatic doors here:

http://www.foyspigeonsupplies.com/catalog/2100-2107.html

As for the design, you'll need to study the photos I posted. The base is about 4' x 8' in size. The wire is 1/2" x 1/2" vinyl coated hardware cloth. The framing is mostly just basic 2x4 and 2x2 stuff. The nest box can be purchased from farmtek.com. No exact dimensions are very critical except the opening for the automatic door.

Good luck.
 
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