Friday, January 28, 2011

The Chicken Coop Makeover

 I want to start by saying, I know that our coop with the dirt floor and cardboard over the windows for winter protection is no where near the nicest. Or even the cleanest around, but it's our coop and when it looks good we are so proud! Through our research into why our chickens are attacking each other we learned a few things. Bored chickens attack each other, the two young roosters are terrorists among the flock, a clean coop keeps the birds happy. Chickens get bored when it's cold outside and they stay indoors a lot(by choice, the door is always open).

We added some alfalfa hay bales to the coop today in order to add surface area to the coop, keep the chickens busy with new distractions, and to add new floor cover.
The chickens loved it right away. They went straight to digging and pecking for treasures.
 Pierre's nest got some extra straw.
 We made some nice holes and hiding spots in between the bales to offer extra living space.
 The one in the center there is going to be a major egg laying spot, I just have a feeling.
This is another spot. Nice and roomy. 
 If you have ever seen a happy chicken, then you know how the flock was acting when we put these hay bales in. They were crazy.
 Even this goose was happy
 Lots of happy curious chickens
Digging, scratching, and pecking for treasures.

It's amazing what 36 dollars worth of hay can do for the coop. It smells wonderful, the chickens are happy, and hopefully they will stop hurting each other now.

We also had a small memorial service for our chicken with no name. Henry and myself dug a large hole in the back field and laid her to rest. A cat is as good as another shovel around here.

Thanks for reading


Lacey said...

They look thrilled :) Thank you for making local eggs an option for my family, I truly appreciate it. And, I appreciate my friend Meaghan for always picking them up for us!

Mike said...

Your welcome!

JMcCarrell said...

That is so interesting. I can't believe that they attack each other out of boredom. Hopefully the improvements keep everyone safe!

~ Janis said...

Boredom casues all kinds of issues with many animals. Chickens seem to do the most damage to their coop mates. Try dangling cabbage, lettuce or other greens in the coop for them to eat and stay busy with. You can stuff a bunch of greens in one of those green suet feeders and hand it in the coop.
I also make warm oatmeal for my hens in the winter and add some fruit. Just for a happy change.
Good post!
Come visit the herd when you have a chance:

Marianne said...

Great pictures, too! I found your blog while searching for pictures of straw (or hay) bale coops. I need to put a temporary addition on the back of our coop or just build another one. Bales are great to use for animal shelters.