Yesterday I worked on finishing the grow-out coop. I put siding on the back and the other side of the coop. I decided to leave the front of the coop open for the summer for extra air flow. In the fall, we may decide to cover it in more siding.
For the roofing, I used a 22 ft long piece of scrap green steel roofing/siding that my dad had on hand that couldn’t be used on a more permanent structure because it had little holes in it. It isn’t crucial to keep the interior of this type of coop completely dry because of the open bottom Also the chickens just need to be kept mostly dry and out of the wind. An occasional drip of water won’t hurt them. for the door, I used a piece of scrap composite wood siding which we used as the siding on the stationary coop. I took the hook and eye latch and the hinges that were on the old rooster tractor door (which I used on the brooding box) used them to mount the door and hold it shut. Total extra money spent on this coop thus far…. $0. It has been made entirely with scraps and items we already had on hand. I would like to buy wheels to put on it one day and make it a chickshaw, but that can wait. I put two handles on each side and it is light enough to be lifted by two people. However, we have yet to try moving it while loaded with chickens.
We received our 100′ PoultryNet Plus fencing (the posts are 6ish feet apart instead of 10 feet and the stakes have a double spike at the bottom so it is more stable) on Thursday. Matthew and I worked to get it set up yesterday afternoon and moved the grow-out coop inside the fencing. I enclosed an old wood pile inside the fencing because it is a royal pain to weed around and I want the chickens to clean it up. This is also a great way to supplement their protein as there are plenty of bugs, worms, spiders, mice, salamanders that live in that type of environment.
I put two of the roosters inside the fence (the largest rooster and the smallest rooster) as we were working on getting the electric hooked up to see how they would handle the fence. They were enjoying running around and eating the grass. However, they kept trying to get back to the stationary run where the rest of their flock was. Once we got the electric hooked up, we were trying to get the battery in the fence tester. We heard a loud indignant squawk. The largest rooster had been trying to get through the fence and got shocked. He got really mad and started attacking the fence because it bit him. That only got him shocked again. He didn’t know what to make of it.
After dark we moved the buffs from the broody house, into the grow-out coop. When Matthew fed them this morning, one of the pullets flew over the fence, but she was easy to catch and put back. We were away from the house most of the morning, but they were all there when we got back. They’ve already done a pretty good job of taking the weeds and grass down around the wood pile.
I’m really glad I was able to get this much done yesterday. However, my fair complexion betrayed me and I got a nasty sunburn. Thank goodness for homeopathic remedies and cold showers.
In other news, the run-in shed my mom got for her horses was finally installed. It looks really nice. They are hoping to bring the horses in the next week or two.