Meat chicken housing

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by gentlemanfarmer, Feb 13, 2009.

  1. gentlemanfarmer

    gentlemanfarmer Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 31, 2009
    Northwestern PA
    After a lot of research I have decided to raise chickens. I have coop construction underway for my laying hens. I would like to raise about 2 dozen meat birds, (cornish x). I don't want to house them with my hens, because the coop would be to large for the hens in winter here in northwestern PA. Any suggestions? Thank you.
  2. PacsMan

    PacsMan Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 8, 2009
    Salt Lake Valley
    You might try a chicken tractor. I’m thinking about the same thing during the summer. If it takes 6-8 weeks, weather shouldn’t be a problem late summer in Salt Lake…

    According to “Chicken Tractor: The Permaculture Guide to Happy Hens and Healthy Soil” you need 2 square feet per meat chicken. ( Amazon link - You can read several pages here. I picked mine up at the library) They (sorta) give you plans to make a 4x10 tractor, and say you can house 20 meat chickens. You’ll need to move it around every few days, if not daily, but it sounds like a good idea.

    Here's ours that's not quite finished.
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2009
  3. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    First, there is no such thing as a coop too large in the winter. If you want you can always very easily knock together an insulated hover over the roost or partition off a 'coop within the coop' to hold their body heat better. Honest. NO SUCH THING as too big, even in the north.

    That said, you don't want CornishX indoors unless unavoidable (unavoidable *and* very well ventilated), especially once you get past the first few weeks. Could you make an extra run, with a leanto shelter part against the layer coop? Or look on the meat bird section of byc for pics of peoples broiler tractors.

    Good luck, have fun,

  4. gentlemanfarmer

    gentlemanfarmer Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 31, 2009
    Northwestern PA
    Thank you guys for the info.
  5. AtRendeAcres

    AtRendeAcres Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 23, 2007
    Clarion County
    I take other chickens out that are brooding with the Cornish in 2 weeks!
    At this point they grow faster & get messier!
    As soon as the Cornish feather out I move them to a tractor!

    This is what I do! ( coop depends how many chickens & what you have to work with!)
    I have my chickens in tractors March to November [​IMG] ((little or NO cleaning))

    November I put them all together (20-30) in a 12x12 shed
    when temperature gets to freezing point 2 heat lamps go on heater under water
    & doors normally close for next 2 months (they were just let out last week)
    (some years I have separated Roos in dog kennels didn't have to do that this year)

    remember small will keep heat in but, if they don't have enough room they will peck each other which leads to cannibalism!

    look in coop design [​IMG]

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