[permaculture] Help Chiken pen design

Tristan tristanbass at yahoo.co.uk
Tue Jan 14 09:49:45 EST 2003

If you do wnat to make dedicated runs, says 3 runs with only one in use
everytime, here are a few suggestions as to what kind of plants to grow for
them too fee themselves as much as poss: They love confrey, love sorrel!
They like any kindof berries, so any ornamental bush (as long as it is not
poisonous) that has millions of red berries such as Piracantha. Any kind of
grain such as Amaranth, fruit such as apples too, strawberries and many
other things which I can look up for you if you would like the whole
list!..... I am very into chickens!

Hope I have helped you there,


> Why do I need to have a concrete floor? Isn't bare earth enough?

Concrete is easy to clean, which you'll want to do once, twice maybe three
times a year. Concrete floor will help keep vermin out ( rats/mice), will
also help keep predators from digging in, and the chickens from scratching
their way out. But then again, yes, bare earth could suffice.

Or is there
> an issue of keeping the
> poultry out of mud when it rains?

Not if you have a roof.
> On the other hand, how big must the pen be? eg how much space is necessary
> each
> chicken? Is there any dependence on the species?

At least 2 sq.ft per bird, a little less for smaller breeds, hopefully quite
a bit more.

> If I understand it well, there must be two environments, a shelter and
> open space right?

Correct. the open sapce is the "run" which if designed permaculturally will
itself be a garden worked and fertilized by the chickens.

> how big is the shelter and how big the open space?

How many chickens ? I let my chickens run around all over the place.

> How can I get the eggs without entering the pen all the times?

You slant their roosts towards a collection box. Never works for me. What's
so bad about going in ? Just make a big, person-sized door.

Don't confuse the ease of having a few chickens with the hassles of having
many. really, a few ( I'd say up to a dozen or so) is really a piece of cake
and doesn't require any great preparations. I have coached several of my
friends and neighbors in this and they have all loved their experiences.
The best PC advice I can offer : "start small and make lots of little
mistakes". As long as they have food, water, shelter and protection, you
can't go very far wrong...
>> What part of Spain do you live in?
> Wow!, where did I mention that I live in Spain? ... Anyway I live in
> Barcelona,
> not quite the land of Flamenco though.
> Thanks and all the best
> Antonio
>> LL
>> onetime Flamenco (older traditional styles) afficianado
>> --
>> L.F.London
>> lfl at intrex.net
>> http://market-farming.com
>> http://www.ibiblio.org/ecolandtech/pcwiki/index.php/london
>> _______________________________________________
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