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Chicken tractor guest post

Tanya from Lovely Greens invited me to write a guest post on chicken tractors for her blog.  I can't believe how many page views I get for chicken tractors, they seem to be a real area of interest and I hope that the information on my blog has helped people.  I find that when I use something everyday, I forget the details that other people may not be aware of, so in this post for Tanya, I tried to just write everything I could think of that I haven't covered in previous posts.  I tried to explain everything we do and why, so that people in other locations and situations can figure out how best to use chicken tractors with their own chickens.

The dogs like to hang out behind the chicken tractors and eat chicken poo.  Dogs are gross!

If you want to read more about chicken tractors, head over the Tanya's blog and read my post, then come back here to leave a comment.  Tanya lives on a little island off the coast of the UK called the Isle of Mann.  Even though she lives on the other side of the world, we have lots in common, she is into gardening and sourdough, and keeps chickens.  She also makes (and sells) soap and keeps bees.  You might like to check out the rest of her blog, I find it really interesting to see what she's up to, especially with our seasons being opposite, and the Isle of Mann looks like a beautiful (cold) place.

If you have any questions about chicken tractors, please don't be afraid to ask, there are probably many more things that I've forgotten to mention.  There are no stupid questions, honestly, if you are living in a different climate and with different predators, and you're sitting there thinking "but how would this work for me?", just ask and maybe I can help, or another reader may have a solution for you.




By the way, my chicken eBook is now available if you want to know more about backyard chickens and using chicken tractors.  More information over at the chicken tractor ebook blog.  Or you can get it directly from my shop on Etsy (.pdf format), or Amazon Kindle or just send me an email eight.acres.liz {at} gmail.com.




What's the eBook about?
Chickens in a confined coop can end up living in an unpleasant dust-bowl, but allowing chickens to free-range can result in chickens getting into gardens and expose them to predators.

 A movable cage or “chicken tractor” is the best of both options – the chickens are safe, have access to clean grass, fresh air and bugs. Feed costs are reduced, chickens are happier, and egg production increases. 

 But how do you build a chicken tractor? What aspects should be considered in designing and using a chicken tractor effectively? In this eBook I aim to explain how to make a chicken tractor work for you in your environment to meet your goals for keeping chickens. 

I also list what I have learnt over 10 years of keeping chickens in tractors of various designs and sizes, from hatching chicks, through to butchering roosters.


Reviews of the Design and Use a Chicken Tractor


Comments

  1. HAHAHA! Why didn't you send me that photo? ;) lol

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    1. I had to save one for my post! I was trying to take a photo of the grass behind the tractors and I realised later that the dogs were there (as usual)

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    2. It's a great photo but the caption really made me laugh :)

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  2. Liz - Something I really want to keep is chickens. It's just convincing RMan of their benefits - all he thinks about is that they will attract snakes... But, I keep harping on.

    Thanks for the info on the chicken tractors - maybe that'll swing the deal ;)

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    1. I was told the other day that chickens actually eat the baby snakes, which may be why we have only ever seen one snake here in 3 and a half years. If you have lose chicken feed around, you do attract mice, and therefore snakes, but if you're tidy, I think on balance the chickens are good for the snake situation, especially if you free-range.

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  3. Interesting post - I used to use this method but found that foxes used to dig holes under the frames to get to the hens and kill them. But I guess you don't have foxes where you are so it would be a problem for you.

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    1. Actually we do have foxes around, but never had any chickens taken. I don't know how quickly the foxes can dig under, we move the tractors once a week, so maybe that doesn't give the foxes enough time, or maybe they're just not hungry enough to try. We also have the dogs wondering around in the paddock a lot, so I don't know if that scares the foxes. We've never seen one around the house, but we do see them on the side of the road occasionally, so they are around.

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  4. Liz, I think it's one of the best and most concise posts about chicken tractors I've read. Very well done!

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  5. I have been keeping chickens for the last couple of years but still found your post really interesting,yet again thanks Liz

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  6. Excellent information. I also wondered about animals getting underneath the tractor. Weasels? Racoons?

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    1. We are lucky not to have any weasels, raccoons, stoats etc. I'm not sure how you can use chicken tractors with these predators around if they are able to dig under the cage overnight. Does anyone else have any ideas?

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  7. So interesting to read your blog at Tanya's about Chicken Tractors. What a brilliant idea
    it is. We farm here in the Yorkshire Dales in the North of England. I do have a few hens - just for eggs for us and a few friends. We let our hens out into our grass land and they road far and wide and always come home at night. Luckily, although we have foxes, we have never lost a hen to them (yet). Our hens live in a wooden hut and we shut them in at dusk. They are always there.

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  8. Hi Liz. Great explanation how to use and choose a chook tractor. I had not thought of termites with the wooden ones! I use a dome over my vege garden periodically and find it works really well to get the poo exactly where I want. Love the photo with the dogs...my schnauzer eats it too but worse still loves to wear it as perfume!

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Thanks, I appreciate all your comments, suggestions and questions, but I don't always get time to reply right away. If you need me to reply personally to a question, please leave your email address in the comment or in your profile, or email me directly on eight.acres.liz at gmail.com

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