The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Truck camper chicken coop

cheap easy living solution for chickens?

One way to protect your chickens is to elevate the coop on a pole so that racoons can't climb up and help themselves to a snack. used an old truck camper and a satellite pole to keep their flock safe. The idea is that predators would have problems climbing the pole while the chickens could fly up when they needed some coop time.

Some chickens have trouble with flight, so this might not work for all breeds, but I think it's an outside the box solution that is worth considering if you have these items laying around and a group of chickens who know how to flap their wings enough to get home. It might also be good for folks with back trouble who don't want to bend down to pick up eggs.

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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We were given a free camper one summer. We raised it off the ground and built walls and a door below it. Then we had a goat house.
Comment by Mona Sun Jan 22 18:06:32 2012
That is so cool! I have seen that camper so many times. They say all you really need is right below your nose. I think they're right!
Comment by Maggie Hess Sun Jan 22 18:32:56 2012

Mona --- I like it! I think that'd make an even better goat house than chicken coop.

Maggie --- This isn't our coop, but it is pretty cool.

Comment by anna Sun Jan 22 21:03:07 2012
I figured that out after reading the post.
Comment by Maggie Mon Jan 23 09:12:06 2012

If raccoons are heavier than chickens (wich seems the case at first glance), the following might work:

Make a seesaw that runs from the ground to the entrance of the coop. Balance it so that your heaviest chicken can just walk over it. The heavier predators would topple it.

Comment by Roland_Smith Mon Jan 23 13:25:05 2012
I love that mental image --- of the chicken running up safely and the raccoon following behind and getting plopped on the ground. :-)
Comment by anna Mon Jan 23 16:33:57 2012
Does the manure fall to the ground or does it build up in the coop?
Comment by brett Tue Jan 24 12:02:11 2012
That's a good question, Brett. I don't know the answer, but I agree that manure management is one of the most important parts of designing a chicken coop. I think the healthiest option for everyone involved is deep bedding directly on the ground, which wouldn't be possible in this coop.
Comment by anna Tue Jan 24 15:54:30 2012

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