Housing meat birds?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by quiltnchik, Jun 19, 2009.

  1. quiltnchik

    quiltnchik Songster

    May 19, 2009
    Virginia
    Where does everyone prefer to house their meat birds? I'll be ordering 25 in the fall and want to make sure we have everything in place to house them properly. I don't, however, want to spend a ton of $$ on birds we're going to end up butchering at 7-8 weeks of age.

    Thanks!
     
  2. bigredfeather

    bigredfeather Songster

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    Oct 1, 2008
    Yorkshire, Ohio
    IMOP a tractor is the best way to go. If you do a search, you will find a ton of design ideas. You may have to spend some money intially, but if you're going to do more meaties, it will be worth it in the long run.

    Here's mine.

    [​IMG][/img]

    There are 33 of them in this picture. I think I could fit a few more if I needed to. It is 6'Wx10'Lx2'H. I had less than $100 invested in it.
     
  3. Freebird

    Freebird In the Brooder

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    Aug 29, 2007
    Springdale, AR
    I agree, I think a tractor has got to be the best way. When you see how much poop they generate, you'll understand! I spent about $65, not counting the poultry wire (which I had laying around). Mine is smallish, only 8'x6'. I've just got 4 birds in it doing a test run:
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  4. quiltnchik

    quiltnchik Songster

    May 19, 2009
    Virginia
    With the tractors like that (which I think are a great idea, BTW), do you not have a problem with predators at night? I'd be scared that something might get in and get them before I do! [​IMG]

    I do like the tractors, however, 'cause they are much more inexpensive to make than a coop. Thanks for the info! [​IMG]
     
  5. Freebird

    Freebird In the Brooder

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    Aug 29, 2007
    Springdale, AR
    bigredfeather's looks much more predator proof than mine. Looks like they used some type of hardware cloth - much stronger than the poultry wire I used. Also looks like they have an apron of the same material around the base to prevent things from digging under. I used poultry wire because I had it laying around. I'd suggest using the stronger stuff if you're worried about predators. There are a lot of predators in my area, but I've been eliminating as many as possible over the past several years. Plus, the tractor is in my yard, and I have a blue heeler that alerts me to anything that comes into the yard - he's tree'd at least 6 coons and stopped at least 4 possums over the last two years, and I won't even list the number of times he's been sprayed by skunks. So far, so good.

    My predator proofing:
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2009
  6. quiltnchik

    quiltnchik Songster

    May 19, 2009
    Virginia
    Quote:He's BEAUTIFUL!! [​IMG]
     
  7. simplyscrambled

    simplyscrambled Songster

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    Mar 29, 2009
    I wanted to try some meaties, but I have no grass! Part being in a drought that has spanned years and years, and being on a small suburban lot where I mostly have vegetables and fruit trees in the backyard. Dirt and gravel, mostly. Darn.
     
  8. Peruvian

    Peruvian Songster

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    Apr 15, 2008
    Vermont
    I like my cattle panel hoop tractor. It's heavier (more predator proof) but I can walk in and out and hang the waterer and feeder.

    [​IMG]
     
  9. ohiofarmgirl

    ohiofarmgirl Songster

    Jan 22, 2009
    freebird - thats a nice lookin' dog
    :)

    Peruvian - will you briefly explain how the internal structure of your hoophouse works? aside from the door and the footings along the bottom is there any other framing?

    my meaties are getting' mighty big.. yikes! we need to do something and soon

    thanks!
     
  10. Peruvian

    Peruvian Songster

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    Apr 15, 2008
    Vermont
    Mine is based on Robert Plamondon's design - http://www.plamondon.com/hoop-coop.html

    Scroll
    down below 'Cover it with tarps' section and click on the link for the .pdf document. It shows it very well.

    I'd recommend using 2 8 foot lengths (for front and back) and 2 10 foot lengths (for sides) but bolt the cross pieces at 8 feet so there are 2 foot lengths to attach wheels in the rear for easier moving. I bolted boards on later but it's not as clean looking or strong.
     

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