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Chickenhouse progress

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Work on the Chickenhouse has been moving along. It’s not a huge job, but all of the little bits and pieces take time, including foraging through the barn and drive shed for material to recycle. Here, you can see the bottom of the new door between the main sections, for baby meat birds coming in a couple of weeks, and the mature layers, due in June. And there are six new nest boxes. Most of the boxes I’ve seen in photos have a top, which I gather is partly to discourage roosting on the walls and the subsequent crapping into the nests. But I’m fully deferring to Bob’s design, based on his decades of all-around farming. He says it shouldn’t be problem. For me, I’ve been doing my chicken reading and chicken chatting, but it’s mainly learn as you go with Bob in the lead on this one!

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Jack the Miniature Donkey has been amiably hovering around, checking out the construction with his head stuck in the door. Here, he’s hanging close to the Chickenhouse even when no-one’s home. The chickens will soon be his neighbors. He’s a friendly fellow, also quite territorial, and he can kick, so he ought to be good for protecting that flank! All in all, I’m really incredibly excited. I guess the city guy in me is still in there looking out… ;)

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7 Comments

  1. Man, I sure would love to have a miniature donkey! Jealousy, pure and simple…

  2. I think there is a whole new thread on nest box design here. I made the enclosed variety for my first chickens and yes they did roost on the roof of them and it was messy. My current chickens have the open design fixed to the wall (I can’t get it off as it’s been bolted, and now rusted solid), through the breeze block wall. It’s also in a dark corner of the hen house so that’s why it’s used.

    The open boxes do stay cleaner but because my current chickens are much heavier than my earlier ones, some of them can’t make it up to the boxes so lay on the floor. (It’s 2 different hen houses I’m talking about too).

    I’m pondering building some enclosed, sloping roof boxes for use outside to facilitate egg collection and ensure that the birds don’t roost in them overnight. At the moment though, as they have somewhere to lay, it’s not top of my work list.

    One thing I will say is make sure you have a decent floor to the box. I was given a reclaimed set to use but when I got it home, I realised that the base board was chipboard and this had absorbed water and was growing mold. Also you need to be careful which wood treatments you use if you are going to treat the wood as some kill chickens.

  3. Jack is adorable! How lucky you are and how lucky he is to be in a secure setting with such TLC. I hope you never lose that urban eye looking out and ever treasure the wonder of it all.
    Best, Deborah

  4. I’ve got a suggestion for you – build your nest boxes so you can insert a cardboard box to hold the bedding/sawdust/straw whatever, then when they get dirty, you just pull the box out, and pitch it into the burn pile or compost to get rid of crap and bugs (if any!)

  5. Blue Fox: That sounds like a good idea. I’ll keep it in mind once the chicken chores start up… Thanks!

  6. mparker

    Thank you for this & I will be back!

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