Chicken Tractor Floor Question

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Rocc, Jul 28, 2010.

  1. Rocc

    Rocc Hatching

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    Jul 28, 2010
    New Haven, CT
    Hi all,

    Long time lurker, first time poster here. I tried searching the message boards here (and elsewhere) for the answer to my question, but couldn't find anything specific. So.. here goes.

    I just finished my coop and run, so that's all set and locked down tighter than fort knox. I have the plans (in my head) for a tractor so I can move the gals around the yard, but I'm not sure what, if anything I should put on the bottom of the tractor.

    Understanding that the tractor is just to keep the chickens in (not predators out), do I need anything? Once I get them in there, will they just walk with me as I go? Do I need some kind of a perch for them to hang out on while I move them about the yard? Maybe just chicken wire? I have absolutely no idea. [​IMG]

    I'm going to be getting my first chickens next week.. so any advice would be helpful.

    Thanks!!!
     

  2. WingingIt

    WingingIt Songster

    Apr 16, 2009
    First off, [​IMG]


    I've seen a few tractors on here where they had chicken wire or metal mesh on the bottom. The grass will still be accessible to the chickens, but it would have to be sturdy enough to support their weight while you picked up one end and moved it. Most tractors that I've seen on here don't have anything on the bottom. The chickens learn to walk along as it moves. Just be sure that it's constructed out of something heavy enough that it won't tip easily. You can also use stakes to secure it to the ground once it's in place. Create a lip that you can pound a U shaped stake over or the edge of a big tent stake, etc.
     
  3. Rocc

    Rocc Hatching

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    Jul 28, 2010
    New Haven, CT
    Thanks!!

    These are going to be my first chickens.. so I have no idea what their behavior would of been like. Much appreciated!
     
  4. elmo

    elmo Songster

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    DFW
    I use a daytime tractor for my flock and have tried out a couple of designs as you can see on my BYC page. All of my tractors are open on the bottom so the chickens can enjoy scratching in the grass without abrading their feet on wire.

    I never move the tractor with the chickens inside, though. I usually move the tractor at the end of the day after I've herded the flock back into their stationary coop/run for the night. These days, in this heat, I'm having to move the tractor several times a day to follow the shade in our backyard (plus I have shade tarps, plus I hose down the ground in the tractor). Whew, it's hot here. The chickens are doing ok, but I'm pretty wilted by the end of the day.

    I'm finding that it's usually quite easy to move the chickens from the tractor to the coop and vice versa. I use something long in both hands, like those pool noodles or the long handled rake and litter pan that I use around the coop and run. The chickens get used to the routine very quickly and usually go right where I want them to go without too much fuss. Except this year we have a young chicken named Scooter that we now call "Wrong Way Scooter." All the other chickens will go in one direction and Scooter will go in the other....
     

  5. elmo

    elmo Songster

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    May 23, 2009
    DFW
    Quote:The single most surprising thing I've discovered about chicken behavior is that I find it really fascinating to watch. I sit out in the back yard for hours, watching my flock free ranging and interacting. It's like chicken soap opera! Very addictive.
     
  6. Tigerjane

    Tigerjane Songster

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    Jun 17, 2010
    Pflugerville, TX
    Quote:[​IMG]
     

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