Mobile Chicken Coop

We were very excited to move our chickens out to pasture a few weeks ago and give our new mobile chicken coop a trial run.  Our chickens live in our brooder for the first week to two weeks, depending on the weather and temperatures, and then are moved out to our chicken coop for another week or so until they are big enough to head out to pasture.  In the past we have tried several ways to free range our chickens.  The first year we tried two Joel Salatin style chicken tractors.  If you want to see these in action check out this youtube video. joel salatin chicken tractors   Although they work well we ran into a couple of problems.  One is they were difficult to for me to move by myself and often had escaped chickens and needed help from my kids to round up chickens following the daily move.  The biggest problem arose when our horses decided they would really like to eat the chicken feed themselves and figured out how to break into the chicken tractors, eating the food and setting chickens free for the coyotes to eat.   Seeing that the chickens share the pasture with our cows and horses this became a big problem.  The last few years we just parked the chicken tractors up near the house and let the chickens free roam during the day and they used the chicken tractors as their coop at night.  Although this worked, they were not protected during the day from coyotes and we have some bold coyotes who have no problem coming near the house in the middle of the day to grab a chicken snack.  This solution also did not get the chickens out on our pasture where we want their manure to help improve our soils.  Well this winter we came upon the solution.  A mobile chicken tractor that one person can easily move.  It is designed by Justin Rhodes over at abundantpermaculture and he calls it the ChickShaw.  So we built a ChickShaw and bought ourselves some electrified poultry netting to create an area that the chickens can roam free but still be protected from predators.  The ChickShaw has been working beautifully and I can easily move it myself, even with a hurt ankle, and the chickens happily use it for a coop at night.  My eight year old son can even move it with a little help to get it going.  Here are some pictures of our new set up and my sons enjoying the chickens.

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Chickens grazing in pasture

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Our new mobile chicken coop

4 thoughts on “Mobile Chicken Coop

  1. How did you attach the wheels and what is supporting them. I have a similar project started and looks like I have the sam wheels. Got the idea from abundant permaculture and don’t like how his wheels need the bulky bracing he used. Any input?

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    • We tried the wheels from abundant permaculture and we didn’t get 10 feet before one broke off, but our coop is a little bigger than his. My husband welded a piece of sucker rod to the bolts that fit the wheels to create an axle. He then welded a square plate on each side that he used to screw it to the coop. It worked well all summer. Hope that helps.

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