Old Style Hen House Tractor

By ChickBond 007 · Jan 11, 2012 · ·
  1. ChickBond 007
    [FONT=georgia,palatino]The Roost InnRed[/FONT]
    Our miniature version of an old style hen house as a chicken tractor

    We began this building project with the following materials:
    24 - 2" x 2" x 8' pine boards
    3 - sheets of plywood 4' x 8'
    2 - 2" x 3" pine boards (roosts)
    4 sets of hinges/latches
    36" hardware cloth (bottom of building and windows)
    chicken wire (we used 48" and 24")
    1 gallon rustic barn red exterior paint

    Here's the framing:

    [FONT=times new roman,times]The building portion of this tractor is well ventilated through the old style windows on the top. The size is 8' x 3' and includes hardware cloth on the bottom (no poop cleanup), a single door entrance to secure birds at nightfall, and 4 roosts inside. I have 16 Cornish X's in it comfortably each evening. [/FONT]
    Here's inside the building:

    [FONT=times new roman,times]We framed in one door to the building to secure the chickens at night. [/FONT]
    We added 3 gated openings to the run: one on top near the front to drop in food and water easily, one in the very front to let the chickens free-range and shoe them back in, and finally a tiny gate so that the hen house door can be opened/closed each morning/night. (It's drying on top in this pic.)
    [FONT=times new roman,times]We still need to add wheels/skids to this tractor, but will wait until the current batch of meat-chickens are finished out. (We can lift it to move it with a couple strong boys and dad.) We estimate our tractor cost about $100 in materials. Here's the end product:[/FONT]
    (I believe this could be permanent housing for a small flock if someone desired, and if a nest box was added in the interior, and a roof hinge used.)

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  1. HorseChick21
    really neat.
  2. Dgevry
    I used this design this past year and had problems moving it alone due to the size even with wheels. I also had trouble getting the birds when I needed to collect them for butchering or switching tractors. Overall it is a great design just needs a few tweaks.
  3. Ullie
    Where's the wheels?
  4. sledwards66
    I really like this simple easy design. If you put together kits, I'm sure people would want to buy them in Cailfornia. Shipping may be a bit expensive though depending on the weight. I am thinking of integrating this design into a design I am planning on using. Only real difference would be to place the house section over the bottom section to make cleaning easier (less bending down) with a ramp to the bottom built into the inside part of the house portion.

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