Composted Chook food & rio coop construction


Valued Member
Premium Member
Sep 27, 2015
Pomona, Qld
While amusing myself on youtube this morning I found lots of really interesting videos about making hot compost to feed chooks during subzero weather.

But I think it could apply to any weather & season. Just imagine all the slaters, saw fly lava & other sundry critters that would proliferate in this compost for the chooks to find. You would hardly have to buy feed for them if the pile was big enough & what better form of protein. Look how happy & healthy those black hens are!

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Then I found these very simple coop constructions using concreting rio or as the yanks call it 'cattle panel'.

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I would use a far more sturdy tarp.

There are 2 types of green & silver tarps. One type is simply blue tarps coloured green & silver & decompose in the Aussie sun in 3mths flat. The other brand will last 4yrs easy in the full sun & is only 30% dearer! I'll find the brand names & add them here in a day or so. These better tarps are not available at BCF or Bunnings. You have to go to an independent camping store to get them. I have just put new tarps over the top of my older tarps on my shelters which are all now 5yrs old. The tarps had just begun to wear where they rested on the rio mesh & small drips were occurring in a few places but still a basically dry work place in all weathers.

The coop in this video is a permanently placed coop but other videos you'll find in the side bar show similar designs that can be pulled along like chicken tractors.
The thing about this type of construction is that the chooks really don't have completely safe free range if that is something you really want to provide for your chooks. You would just let them out as most people do. Only the tractors would provide a type of safe free range if you pulled it along every day or 2.
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Well-Known Member
Premium Member
Nov 24, 2017
Mid North SA
Temperate (all seasons)
What a great idea, ClissAT. I've gone with the traditional coop, fenced off a corner of the yard with wooden poles and chicken wire; the poles were left here by the previous owner, and the chicken wire was left overs from the local kindy in return for some of my labour in a working bee. The yard is roughly 8m across, and 5m deep. The henhouse is about 3m x 2m, and probably higher than it needs to be; I didn't want to duck when I walked in, and I wanted plenty of airflow for them. I put some shadecloth between the back of the henhouse and the fence railing.