Monday, May 16, 2016

All Cooped Up

We have chickens.

We had a temporary coop made from our old coop from our last chickens.

It wasn't good.

It's roof was low.

We had given away our hen house so we were using a very rigged up house that was super basic with no laying boxes.

It wasn't good.

That's all changed now.

We spent 2 days putting together my husband's idea. Well, not two. We spent yesterday morning at church, but came home, at lunch, and back out we went.

The chickens are delighted. No, really, they are cracking us up with how they are acting in their new super coop. It's not done. The house you see at the end of the pictures below will be fully enclosed soon and we will be putting skids on it so it can be moved around the yard from place to place. This will keep them on fresh grass with fresh supplies of bugs.

The coop with the girls and our one roo inside. You can see the house at the end partially covered (it has a roof and 3 half walls.) Not bad. It's so nice out now we didn't even want it finished yet so we are waiting to buy more wall material. It has an arched roof on the entire yard so nothing can get into the pen with the chickens. At the end where the house is, there is a very, very thick fabric waterproof tarp that will give them extra shade and weather protection.

This is the gift my boys made for their chickens. It's a roosting tree. Simple 4"x4" in the ground with 1"x1" posts all around at different heights. The last picture will tell you what they thought of it, so keep reading.

Inside the pen - you can see a bit of the detail of the ramp and awning better. See that big gray thing right in the middle there? That's my second favorite chicken equipment ever. It's a double walled chicken watering can. When you take the top off one wall comes with it. You fill the can with water for the chickens and no water comes into the drinking trough area until you put that lid back on all the way down. So you can move it where you need and nothing spills. It has a handle inside of it so you can move it with the lid off. It has a handle on top so you can move it with the lid on and it locks so the lid won't come off. It keeps the water so clean and fresh (much better than the plastic ones) and holds a lot of water. Never thought I would be excited about chicken accessories.

So, I said the watering can was my second favorite item, here's my first. It's our laying boxes. Yes, that is a cord in the picture. It will be tacked up today. We bought these at a second hand store this week. My husband had been eyeing them and we were actually able to make a deal with the woman that owns the store (it's a really nice store, a fun place to shop for cute things for your house and adorable new clothing). He had some items that are similar to the metal things she sells (her biggest business) so the price was taken way down after we traded those. We attached it to the house so it wouldn't move no matter how rambunctious the girls got and filled each box with nice fresh hay for them. Now we just wait for eggs.

Back to the roosting tree. We looked outside last night as we walked past the kitchen window and here's what we saw.

Sorry the picture isn't very good. It was very dark and I used my cell phone. First the rooster got up on the top of the tree and strutted his stuff. He was acting like he was king of the world up there. It was hysterical. This picture was taken about an hour later and you can see one hen on the arm on the left. Then that's a hen on the tallest point. Right next to her (we are moving left to right) is our rooster. Then three hens on the right side of him. They were there until after we went to bed last night. So, I think I would call that a hit.

We have another roosting bar closer to the hen house, one built into the frame of the hen house, then each level of the hen house has one on it. So, roosting is an easy job for them with many locations.

That was our weekend. What did you cook up this weekend for fun?


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