Where do your rangers go at night?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by jfarm, Jul 7, 2008.

  1. jfarm

    jfarm Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 2, 2007
    Hi there.

    For those of you with ranger type broilers in tractors, where do your birds go at night? Just finished my tractor, but wasn't sure if they need to be locked up in a house-type shelter at night or if I can just shelter half of the tractor and let them roost in there.

    Thanks for your input! I have learned sooo much from you all!! [​IMG]
     
  2. greyfields

    greyfields Overrun With Chickens

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    Mar 15, 2007
    Washington State
    Shelter half the tractor and they just sleep in there. Tractos are predator proof (if on level ground) and as long as they have protection from sun/wind they are fine.

    Do not provide roosts. Broilers shouldn't roost, but will just sleep on the grass.
     
  3. HillCountryMomma

    HillCountryMomma Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 16, 2008
    If your tractor has a wide wood frame bottom it should be fine against most predators. If it does not, you will need some sort of additional covering to the ground to protect the birds from critters (especially raccoons!) reaching in and grabbing them, especially at the back and corners (where the birds like to huddle to sleep). I have 2 tractors. A small one I built out of PVC pipe covered with chicken wire. It has a tarp that goes to the ground on 1/2 of it. I have to line the corners where the birds sleep with 2x4s or the coons will reach through and grab a chick. I only keep babies in that light tractor and it's in my backyard up close to the house.

    My big tractor has a 2x6 bottom frame and is a hoop tractor. It has light weight plastic netting over the whole thing, heavy duty chicken wire 18 inches around the bottom and 1/2 of it is covered to the ground with a tarp. Nothing has been able to get into it yet and I've had critters try to dig under it as well as go through the wire.

    We have a young raccoon that found us this year and has been causing all kinds of problems. If I could just get a clean shot at it I'd be one happy lady!!

    Anyway, my birds all sleep in their tractors under the tarp covered area. My meat birds (Freedom Rangers) do like to roost. They squish onto the 2x corner braces in the tractor and fight for who gets the prime spot on top of the 2 waterers. I lock them in every night and there's a crew of them that think they are clever and fly up to roost on the ridge pole of the tractor 4' off the ground. Which means I then have to pull them down and plop them back in the tractor...

    I just turned 4 ranger pullets loose for good... hopefully they'll learn to go to the coop with the rest of my layers!

    Liz
     
  4. jfarm

    jfarm Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 2, 2007
    Thanks HillCountryMama! I used your design for the tractor after seeing it with your ranger pics. It was super simple to build and I can't wait to fill it with chickens!
    [​IMG]
     
  5. HillCountryMomma

    HillCountryMomma Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 16, 2008
    Oh my gosh! I can't believe I inspired you!

    I can't take credit for the design though, I saw the idea on a really cool blog and copied his idea, just simplified because I am not much of a builder.

    And hey, post some pictures when you have birds in it!!

    Liz
     

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