New crop of layers

Discussion in 'Back to Basics' started by TnAndy, Jan 14, 2017.

  1. TnAndy

    TnAndy Senior Member Founding Member

    Our current layers are 3 and 4 years old now, so it's time (probably past time) to get a new flock in place. Previous birds are Barred Rock with a few Black Australop in the mix. Local co-op store took orders for fall chicks this year, usually it's spring only, so we got 20 New Hampshire reds in Sept so they would be laying good by spring. Kept them under heat lamp in old watering trough for a brooder for a while, and build a new house for them to get big enough before integrating flocks so the old gals don't pick them to death (which they will....pecking order is a real thing). Built this one smaller than the main house so I can move it with tractor forks.



    Set in one of the garden areas for now, fenced them off a big lot. Egg nests on the end. This one has the same automatic door our main house does, but since this one is mobile, no power to it, and I run it off a 12v battery with 50w solar panel to keep charged.


  2. ditch witch

    ditch witch I do stupid crap, so you don't have to

    Cute little coop! I love those solar powered coop doors. When we relocate, and I have to build a new henhouse, it's getting one.

    The last time I rotated out my hens, I gave my 4 year olds to a friend who also had a 4 year old flock. She needed new chicks but didn't want to be bothered with raising up layers so she decided to just double up the number of part time layers. Because, you know, that's real cost effective. That was 4 years ago. She's running a retirement home for layers now.
  3. chelloveck

    chelloveck Diabolus Causidicus

    My retirement home for ex layers is a stock pot.....:LOL:

    Via Wapato Showdown NB. The website has a fine picture gallery of WWII US military aircraft etc....WW I & II Photos
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2017
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  4. Mountain mama

    Mountain mama Monkey

    Awesome house!!!!!!
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  5. Sgt Nambu

    Sgt Nambu RIP 4/19/2018

    Really nice hen house! You sure do good work! :)
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  6. rockriver

    rockriver Monkey+

    I've lost the last two batches of chickens to critters, because of not being a good steward about shutting the door.
    (I feel better after confession!)
    I've got to find out about these automatic doors.
    chelloveck likes this.
  7. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Monkey+++

    The solar power is only for the door? What about heating the coop? Could the panel also power a light for heat ing the winter. It is a small panel but I would think you would need some heat in the winter.

    Another 5 star project @TnAndy because I never thought to have an automatic door on a coop.
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  8. TnAndy

    TnAndy Senior Member Founding Member

    Yeah, raccoons are the worst at night unless you have them locked out. The auto door is nice because we don't have to let them out in the morning or go back after dark to lock up.
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  9. TnAndy

    TnAndy Senior Member Founding Member

    No, electric heat of any kind is pretty out of range of a small battery like would take several batteries and the whole roof of panels to do that. You could run an LED light if you really wanted to, but not much heat off them. I insulated the house, and the body heat off 20 chickens is plenty to keep it above freezing in there....unless we were gonna have sub-zero temps, I wouldn't worry.
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  10. TnAndy

    TnAndy Senior Member Founding Member

    Here is the motor I used on both my doors. Not cheap, but very reliable, and has built in stop/reverse so you don't have to figure that out with switches. You basically plug 'n play. They are a DC motor, but comes with an AC adapter which I plug into an AC timer in the main house which has power. For this new house, I simply got a cheap DC timer and connected to the battery. Add-A-Motor Chicken Coop Automatic Motor (D20): Camera & Photo
    Motomom34, chelloveck and Ganado like this.
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