Category: Animal Housing

Backyard Chickens, and the Interconnectedness of all things. Part 2

This article is Part 2 of a series that is mostly about chickens – not how to care for them, but how to appreciate them as being more complex and interesting than most of us give them credit for. If you are interested only in chickens, and especially mother hens and chicks, this article will be fine to read by itself. But if you’re just tuning in and you want […]

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Permaculture chickens – 6 practical lessons from the evolution of chickens

One of the fundamentals of permaculture design is to observe, understand and work with natural ecosystems.  It sounds simple enough to apply permaculture principles to chicken keeping. Can’t we just observe wild chickens in their natural environment? The problem is, modern domesticated chickens don’t exist in the wild. Junglefowl are the immediate ancestor of chickens, however it’s not that simple. Modern chickens were domesticated more than 8,000 years ago and […]

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5 Key Stages of Designing a Chicken Tractor

If you’ve kept chickens for any length of time I’m sure you’ll be familiar with chicken tractors; also known as chicken arcs. If you aren’t familiar with them, they are portable chicken coops/runs that are typically built on wheels. Building your own can be an affordable and safe way for your chickens to free-range safely. In this article we will cover 5 of the most important stages during the design […]

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Closed-Loop Farming in Costa Rica

I woke up to the sound and smell of a chicken coop. It was a mild March morning in La Argentina, a small town on Costa Rica’s southeastern edge. I was staying on a small-scale, family farm of the gracious Señora Ana. Her farm, as with many of her neighbor’s, incorporates animal, vegetable, and fish production into a closed-loop system. Closed-loop farming is, in essence, the most primitive form of […]

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Raising Rabbits: My Source of Manure

I love raising rabbits, mainly because of rabbit pellets also known as rabbit manure. When people ask me why I raise rabbits they expect me to say meat, pets or fur. When I say manure I really surprise them. I do love my rabbits and I love their meat, but rabbit pellets are invaluable. If you work on a small homestead rabbits might be a great livestock option. I first […]

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A Fowl Arrangement Between Us All

Every morning I get out of bed to the sound of turkeys and chickens parading around my cabin en route to a spot behind the outdoor kitchen scullery where scraps of food are tossed every day. It’s a beautiful permaculture set-up, feeding the fowl by merely scraping the plates over the counter. By the next morning, the birds are happy, and any evidence is gone. Occasionally, the dogs get in […]

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The Definitive Guide To Keeping Chickens In Winter

The Definitive Guide To Keeping Chickens In Winter

Welcome to The Definitive Guide To Keeping Chickens In Winter. Raising chickens during winter can be a challenging time for backyard chicken owners. With those dark cold mornings and the drop in egg production, it’s no wonder we don’t like this time of year!

So I decided to write this guide as an aid for all backyard chicken owners, and to answer all your questions about how to care for your chickens during winter: how to keep them warm, how to stop predators, how to keep your egg production high… you will find all the answers here.

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Facts that Expound more on what Constitutes of Bamboo

Photo: Bambusa vulgaris at the PRI Zaytuna Farm Bamboo Bamboo is a resource that over the ages was not tapped. It has been viewed as an ornamental plant in the gardens and at times, in art and its economic potential not fully exploited. Bamboo is ‘the new timber’, and now people are embracing it. For the most part, it is embraced for its economic importance and benefits over timber, and […]

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Stationary Chook Tractor

Volunteers and students, together with Tom Kendall, have constructed a stationary chook tractor to enable chickens to prepare their own patch for planting and eating… At “Maungaraeeda”, home of the Permaculture Research Institute Sunshine Coast. There are four cells in this set-up, with it focussed on a time structure.

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Leader Follower Grazing System

A multi-species, leader follower grazing system has recently been implemented here at the Permaculture Research Institute (PRI). Multi-species grazing has been shown to improve pasture quality, control weed growth, and enhance pasture utilization (getting the most out of every blade of grass). All of these are achieved while increasing the carrying capacity, enabling more animals to thrive off the same plot of land, continuing the cycle of land restoration. This […]

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Chickens Are Moving to the Suburbs to Lay Fresh, Organic Eggs

There is nothing new about free-range chickens and fresh, organic eggs, except that nowadays more people want them – mostly because they are healthier and tastier than other eggs. This has led to a trend in many parts of the world, of keeping chickens for eggs in the backyards of ordinary suburban homes. By keeping their own hens, people are assured that the eggs they eat are 100 percent organic […]

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Some New Angles on Grazing Cells

The Big Scrub is gone; destroyed by loggers and cattle farmers a century ago. What was once Australia’s largest subtropical rainforest—900km2 of biodiversity—is now largely home to cows and grass. Even between these two components many landowners still struggle to enforce balance. Thistle-covered paddies, eroded hillsides, compacted soils with sparse vegetation—scars from this struggle cover the region’s rolling lowlands..

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