Collapsible Salatin-style pen for broilers?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by ella&clara, Mar 29, 2016.

  1. ella&clara

    ella&clara Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hi, this is my second go with jumbo X Cornish cross. I have 24 currently, 12 in s chicken run and 12 in a chicken tractor with a temporary run attached to protect them from Hawks during the day; I put them inside the tractor during the night. They are always surrounded by electronet also. So this is fine for right now although it is a LOT of work--catching them, moving them, catching escapees,,it's only for another month. What I'd like to have is a salatin style pen, big enough for 25 birds so they could move around and get to Fresh pasture (I'd probably have to move them twice a day), but it wouldn't have quite the shambles effect I have going on now, where a good stiff wind could bring it down and I check on them probably 5 times a day. Plans for that are easy enough to find, however, my problem is that I live in a neighborhood, not out on a country road, and although we don't have rules about such things and our house is in the middle of 5 acres, we (especially my husband) at least like to pretend that we have a nice home without piles of farm implements lying about. Nothing wrong with piles of farm implements, by the way--wish I had a back pasture!! So I'm wondering if there are plans or if you have ideas about how I could build a salatin style pen that I could collapse at the end of the growing season and put away till next year. I'm growing these for my own consumption: no way would anyone pay me enough to make these chickens worth selling! I am slightly insane about this whole chicken business: I got a roll of electronet for my birthday this year! I also have a lovely chicken coop my husband bought me for my layers, and my girls are currently evicted from their playhouse (because it has electricity for a heat lamp) while i used it for a chick brooder. Thanks for any ideas.
     
  2. slingshotandLAR

    slingshotandLAR Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 24, 2013
    What about a small portable coop that's decorative?

    I build these and most are used in suburban settings.

    [​IMG]

    Wire all the way around so they are safe, completely portable and no need for cleaning. It's built for layers but could easily so meat birds( maybe use smaller wire)

    It's solid and will last years, they also add to your yard instead of being an eyesore
     
  3. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    Instead of dismantling the tractor, could you use it for something else? I'm thinking cold frame or other protection for the garden when things get cold.
     
  4. ella&clara

    ella&clara Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 18, 2010
    We actually already have a chicken tractor, which they are in now. (12), and 12 in the pen. (Ha autocorrect changed pen to oven!). Anyway, I'm looking for something bigger than that--mine is 4x8. Using it as a cold frame is a thought, but as my garden is fenced with dog wire to keep out the deer, I couldn't get it inside the garden without dismantling. My husband, who tends to think my hobby has gotten a bit out of control, and I were discussing possibility of making it out of PVC pipe in right angles only and not using glue, and then popping it loose like tinker toys. What do you think?
     
  5. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    Okay, I getcha.

    In theory the pvc would work, but would it be predator proof? I'm not sure what your predator load is, but that's something to keep in mind. On the flip side, if predators aren't so much an issue, it would be nice and light weight for you to be able to move around yourself. I don't know about you, but when my Honey helps me build something, portability isn't usually an option. It takes a team of draft horses or the tractor to move something he's built [​IMG]

    Or, a wooden pen put together using screws might be an option. Unscrew when you're done using it.
     
  6. ella&clara

    ella&clara Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You are absolutely correct on the hubby thing ... He built a bookshelf for my daughter and we had to hire professional movers to get it up the stairs!! We have a significant predator problem, but I have electronet fencing to surround the chicken pens. I've also thought about using stakes to hold down the edges. So far, in my five years of chicken-keeping, I've lost chickens to critters getting in through inadvertently left open doors, or through predators pulling chicks through fences. I hope the netting would take care of it, and I'm also wiling to run a strand of hot wire around the perimeter of the tractor too.
     
  7. Tabasco Jack

    Tabasco Jack Chillin' With My Peeps

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    There are several designs of hoop coops here. I use a 2" x 6" frame for the base and 2 cattle panels for the arches covered with a tarp. The ends are framed with 2" x 2" and covered with 2"X4" fencing and chicken wire.

    They are roughly 8" x 8" and that's plenty of room for 25 Cornish cross. It would be easy enough to take apart after use or just add it to your chicken run for the others to have additional space in the winter.
     
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