We knew we were not going to have enough space for 6 new chickens and the three older ones, so we decided the three older ones would have to go. However, after a few weeks of watching the three older hens interact with the other "livestock" (i.e. Kyra and Waylon), we realized the chickens and the dogs have formed an interesting bond. The three hens hang out with the dogs all day and Kyra seems to enjoy their company...go figure. So we decided to keep the three adult chickens.
Since they get along so well with the dogs, we have decided to make Bandit, Legs, and Rhodie free-range chickens. So this lead us to our most recent project here at the homestead. The six little chickens are being transitioned to the big house and have been given total range of the chicken pen. Hubby and I built a chicken tractor and used one of our old dog houses to make comfy little chicken enclosure.
The tractor is simply a way to keep the big chickens under wraps when we need them to be and to give them a safe place to go at night. Otherwise, almost all of their time will be spent outside of their pen, with free-range of the entire yard. We also designed the tractor so that it can be removed from the dog house and used as a stand alone chicken tractor for the six young girls when they are due for some "outside of the chicken pen" time!
Here are some pictures of the new chickens tractor. We have locked the girls in it for a few days until they know this is their new home!
Ol' Girls checking out their new digs
The pen part is removable
Kyra seems happy when the chickens are happy :-)
Lil' Girls checking out their newly expanded roaming room (the green poles mark where their pen used to end!)
Seems like a lot of work just for a few chickens...but we love these girls, they have been good to us and they are still producing eggs on a regular basis. Besides, who am I to take away Kyra's new friends?