Our flock of chickens are getting on in life and not keeping up with egg production, the primary reason we have for keeping them.
So we decided to retire them off to pastures new on Anarchy Farm and get a new flock.
So What the Flock is Going On?
We hired a local metal worker to make a custom chicken coop and a door for the run.
We then build a roof above the coop to provide shade and shelter from the rain. It’s even got a gutter on it so we can collect rainwater in a small ong. This fresh water supply will save us walking back and forth to the pond or the house to get water.
As we are seldom on the farm at daybreak, one issue we had to over come was who was going to let the chickens out in the morning and safely lock them away again every night.
We search out for our friends on Google and found a fine, upstanding British company called Chicken Guard.
Chicken Guard on the Chicken Retirement Home
Chicken Guard, designed and manufacture an automatic, self-locking door that can be attached to a coop. The opening of the door can be programmed to open and close at set times or work off a light sensor.
I decided to set my Chicken Guard Extreme to open the coop door at 6AM and close at 6:30PM.
It certainly beats getting up or worse forgetting to let the girls out. So, now the wife’s happy, the chickens are happy and I’m happy. That’s a lot of happy!
We also made some automatic feeders, (made from 4inch drainpipe) so the chickens have enough food for several days.
Not only that but we also made a self-water reservoir, (basically a bucket with 4 nipple drinking cups) so again, they have enough clean water to last them for several days without the need for us to replenish it.
In addition to the self-watering reservoir, we positioned a bunch of planters around the chicken coop to collect water from the irrigation system.
In the chicken run we also positioned some logs for them to perch on and constructed a sand bath for the girls to take dust baths. Yep, we spoil our old girls!
They get shade from a banana plant and the rambutan trees and we planted some passion fruit vines around the fence to add additional shade and shelter as they grow and provide more fresh fruit for us.
There are also pineapple plants close to the fence on the outside to dispel any unwanted dogs should they breach our farm perimeter fence.
I think the girls are about as safe as they can ever be on the farm while they are in their chicken run. The only thing we can’t protect them from at the moment in the day is snakes, but we have 3 geese joining them soon from our friends on Koh Chang that will hopefully address that issue, should it arise.
Out with the Old, In with the New
Back at our home, we are waiting for a new flock of egg layers to arrive who will also be introduced to the self-watering reservoir and automatic feeder.
If I can find a way to retro-fit a Chicken Guard to their old coop, I’ll add one to it too.
There’s no point in doing repetitive jobs when there is good technology out there to do it for you. We can collect the eggs mid-morning and let them free range around the food forest and replenish their food and water, once or twice a week.
That’s more time for us to play with the dogs!
Safe and Secure Chicken Retirement Home