Hey I'm new to chickens and coops and the whole nine yards and I figured BEFORE i build my tractor, i should run it by yall so youcan correct me now instead of me leanring the hard way. i promise i tried to do the research but wasn't finding the answers since my search words were so generic :)
So I don't claim to be a paint artists, but I wanted to show yall what I had in mind.
Run dimensions: 10 x 4 x 4 , plus "tail" for railings to move it
Coop dimensions: 4 x 4 x (3 in back, 4 in front)
Ventilation: the back of the coop will be all hardware cloth
Building materials: painted 1x3's and 2x4's for the frame, barn and fence-painted plywood for the coop inside and out, linoleum flooring, roosting bar and bucket-nesting boxes.The roof would come up for cleaning
My plan: move the girls (3-5 birds depending on how we feel) daily/every other day so they can get new bugs and live plants. We would feed them garden scraps and cleaned eggshells? for calcium. I would have plenty of legumes (clover, beans, amaranth) for their protein. I would supplement the youngins' and during the winter. We live in MO, zone 6- in the winter i would close off some of the ventilation and use compost-heating
1. As a typical office working woman, is this tractor likely to be too big for me to pull (be honest, I won't be offended)
2. Is the coop too big for 3 gals in the winter? (I don't want them to get too cold)
3. We have a HEAVY predator population- coons, mice, snakes, possums, cayotes, feral cats, etc etc- does this at least look safe?
4. Should I line the bottom of the tractor with hardware wire? Will they be able to reach the bugs? If I don't are they still safe?
5. Am I being reasonable about their feeding habits?
6. how much winter ventilation should i plan on?
7. anything you would like to say to a young aspiriing hopeful :D, once again, be honest- i won't be offended