do you consider stuff like boredom when you set up your chicken yard?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by picklespickles, Nov 20, 2007.

  1. picklespickles

    picklespickles Songster

    Oct 27, 2007
    someone was mentioning on another post about chickens pecking each other out of boredom.

    i was thinking that i actually do try to provide an interesting area for them. not so much storebought stuff or fancy stuff. but things to fly to the top of, or hide under or run around the backside of. etc. probably as much for my own visual interest as theres. also, i know myself, that i am way better acting when i'm not bored and looking for some trouble to cause. lol.

    i'm just talking about pretty simple things like piles of logs, or sticks or watering hole or whatever. it seems like that by having these various things that a smaller space becomes much larger as they find favorite areas but then have the other areas to check out, too.

    so, do you ever think of things like this?
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2007
  2. arlee453

    arlee453 Songster

    Aug 13, 2007
    near Charlotte NC
    mulch pile. Mine love the mulch pile - and would look nice too.

    A few stacked up logs for bugs to hide in - again doesn't take much room, but the chickens would think it was a playground for them.

    Oh, and of course don't forget a sandbox for them to dust bathe in!
  3. Crazy4Chicks

    Crazy4Chicks Songster

    Nov 20, 2007
    Glendale, AZ
    I have some rather huge thick tree branches that have fallen due to a bad wind we had I was planning on having them removed and taken to the dump, but now I think I will stack them up in the chicken yard to have something to play on, might make a few places to hide in or roost on - hmm think I am going to be busy next few days.

  4. Buff Hooligans

    Buff Hooligans Scrambled

    Jun 11, 2007
    Yes, I consider boredom, more out of compassion than of worrying that they're going to start pecking each other.

    Chickens are such insatiably curious creatures, that it seems cruel to deprive them of mental stimulation. Since I work in offices all day, it makes me sad that I can't be near to dig up new weed clumps or sit outside on one of their logs with them in the run. Oh well, it is still a better life than battery chickens live...
  5. Wynette

    Wynette Moderator

    Sep 25, 2007
    Old branches & a tire lying around, and you can see on the bottom right a half of an old garbage can - cut it in half & they run in & out of it. I move it around in the run.

  6. How funny that this subject came up today!

    I save leaves that people put on the curb in the fall, and a couple of weeks ago I emptied a couple of bags into a big pile in the chunnel; you could practically hear the girls scream, "LEAF PILE!!!!" as they jumped in, scratching and clucking excitedly.

    Then, last night while the girls were sleeping, I dropped 8 bales of straw into the chunnel with the thought of arranging them into a wind-block so the girls could be outside during the cold weather which is supposed to be here in a couple of days. The bales happened to land in 3 differently arranged "piles"; one of them was in sort of a "bridge" arrangement, one of them was in sort of an "L" arrangement, with one bale standing on end and one laying down beside it, and the other three bales were in a row.

    Today at lunch, I had chickens playing "ring around the rosey", "king of the hill", and "hide and seek". I don't know who was having more fun; me, or them!

    And if it ever rains here (6 weeks, no rain!), the bales will help hold water in the soil, worms will hit the soil under the bales, and the girls will go NUTS when I move the bales!

    I just might have to get more bales for their original intended purpose; these seem to be a new kind of "chicken lego"!
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2007
  7. Kentucky~Momma

    Kentucky~Momma Songster

    May 20, 2007
    South Central Kentucky
    My husband built what he likes to call the "Chicken Jungle Gym". It is not fully finished, but here is the start of it and they chase each other around on it.

  8. ORChick

    ORChick Songster

    May 20, 2007
    My run (and coop, and chickens, for that matter) is (are) still only theoretical. But I've been thinking of what I might do in there. Certainly a few 2x4's mounted high for them to sit on. I have a couple of large terra cotta pots that I will put in there, with screen over the top, that I will plant with things they might like (the screen will keep them from digging the plants out by the roots). We had a tree come down some time ago; the logs are still sitting around, so a few of those will go in the run as well. The coop will be raised, with room underneath (to give them a dry spot out of the soggy Oregon weather), and I plan a spot for dust baths there. I'll wait 'till they are here before planning anything else; see if they like what I plan to do.
  9. picklespickles

    picklespickles Songster

    Oct 27, 2007
    this was a fun thread.

    for my goats, i dump branches back there for them to munch, but i had never thought of dumping bags of leaves for them or the chickens. people burn a lot in this area, so not a lot of bags by the curb, but all this stuff has given me food for thought.

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