As promised, we have a chicken coop update!
We still had one of our brooders (a box with a heat lamp set up for itty bitty chicks) in the sunroom, which was driving Tim nuts. He asked me what we could do to get the chicks out into the coop and I told him that since they were still not completely feathered they needed to have access to a heat source and since they were so small compared to our other chickens they needed to be separated somehow until proper introductions had been made :)
My smart hubby's solution to the problem?
From materials that we already had (including the wood from the free pallets we picked up!), he arranged for the chicks to join the big chickens!
The sloped top makes it hard for chickens to roost on it, the chicken wire keeps the chicks safe from the pecking order while they grow, and the hinged lid makes it easy for me to clean, love on the chicks, feed and water them, etc.
Keelin was at school (this was done last week, by the way) and Jackson wanted to help us take the last 3 small chicks out to the coop. He wanted to carry one of our Buff Orpington pullets and that is my arm trying to encourage him to be gentle with her wings.
I think it's precious how gentle they try to be, even Jackson in his 2yr old way.
While Daddy arranges the new chick box, Jackson hangs out with the "beebee kickin'" and enjoys the sun!
A little hug for the chick *sigh* and in the background there, you can see one of our rain barrels sitting by the dog run. And yes, that is a big, blue plastic kiddie pool- for the dogs :)
The new setup. I was a bit concerned about putting the box right under the roost, but so far, the hens have stayed away from it! The water has been put up on a wooden pallet to keep the shavings out and been very successful at keeping the 26 free roaming chickens from mucking up their water.
The 2 wooden boxes under the roost are what I transported the now-4 grown chickens home in a couple of weeks ago. Thanks to the people I got the chickens from, the pullets can now reach the roosts, which they enjoy!
The heat lamp has since been moved to a corner of the chicken box and thanks to the beautiful weather, is only on at night now.
One of our Black Australorp pullets checking out the chicks new digs!