One of the reasons we decided to move to our new, larger house was so we could grow more food and start keeping chickens for fresh eggs.
We built a chicken run in the region of 10×6 meters in size so our chickens had plenty of space to scratch around in. We also built a teepee style chicken coop for the hens to sleep and lay their eggs in. The whole project came in under $25 about 1000THB and consisted of the following:
- 6 wooden posts
- 8 cinder blocks
- 12 2×1 lengths of wood (for the floor)
- 1 roll of wire
- 1 roll of chicken wire
- 1 roll of shade cloth
- 20 straw sections for the roof
After a grueling half-day working under the blistering sun (with blistering hands) the chicken run and coop was ready for our new chickens.
Keeping Chickens – The Good Life and the Dark Side
Four birds arrived from Trat province the next day and took to their new home like ducks to water. We were all living the good life for a couple of weeks. Then disaster struck.
We were awoken at dawn to the terrible sound of armageddon as a pack of local soi dogs got into the chicken run to wreak death and destruction amongst our small flock.
Our two remaining traumatized hens that survived found a temporary home on our balcony while we rebuilt and fortified their home. Part of the modernization was ironically a large dog cage. The chickens sleep in it and as it was designed to transport dogs so they can’t get out, they can’t get in it either. So far so good!
So now every evening our chooks go to bed and we lock the cage behind them. In the morning we let them out to roam free and feed while we take their tasty free range eggs to eat or give to friends. The next step will be to automate the opening and closing of the coop doors so I get a longer lay in bed.
Both our birds have developed characters of their own and we often let them out to clean the garden of bugs and snails, enjoy a dirt bath in the hugelkultur bed or just follow me around when I’m attending to the garden.
We have since added a ‘self-service greens feeder’ in the chicken run and planted it out with micro greens and corn. Now the girls get their greens every day.
We refer to the chickens collectively as ‘the girls‘ but still haven’t named them individually. Got a good name for our chickens? Let us know your suggestions in the comments below.