After too much reading and fretting about logistics and safety for the chickens, I’ve decided to do something I understand and which matches our environment. I’m just going to build a dragable chicken coop which can follow the sheep around. We’ll have to let the chickens out in the morning and pen them up at night, but that’s food and water time anyway. It should be big enough that come fall, we can just drag it home and use it all winter.
This does mean that we are counting on the chickens to stay inside the electronet with the sheep during the day. Supposedly, they do this fairly well in a field. We’ll have to see how that works in the woods. A fancy chicken tractor is not going to work in the woods, nor, I hope, do they need protection from hawks as long as there are trees overhead. If they won’t play nice about sticking around, they may have to stay home and not get all those yummy bugs to eat. Once we have real pasture we can revisit the issue.
The dimensions are dictated by the metal roofing panels we already own and which are 8′ x 3′. Presto, a 6 x 12 shed with a 4 pitch roof, 6′ high in back, 8′ in front, mounted on 6 x 6 skids. I banged out some sketches, but my drafting paper is crumpled from being in a corner for a while, and has what I’m telling myself is a coffee stain along one side. (“Princess-kitty, stay off of Daddy’s paper!”)
I did make up a cutting list:
3 12′ 6 x 6
4 8′ 4 x 4
4 6′ 4 x 4
2 7′ 4 x 4
12′ worth of 2 x X x 6′ (3′ pieces usable)
12′ worth of 1 x X x 8′
120′ 2 x 4
252 sq ft of 1 x X random length.
I need a bunch of 1 x for some inside projects too, so I’ll just go crazy on that.
It’s feeding time now, so I’ll do that and see how much of what Kevin left.