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The Chicken Ark

Build a Chicken Ark - A Great Way of Getting Started With Chickens

Keeping chickens is easy and very rewarding. I still love going out to the chicken ark and collecting, warm, fresh eggs. In the early days, though I was bewildered. I didn’t know what I needed to get started, what information I needed or what kind of chicken house to get. There was a huge array of different types to buy, all of which cost way more than I wanted to spend, and the chicken coop plans I found were unclear, badly produced and hard to follow.

Building a Chicken Coop

What I needed when I started out was a simple kit. I wanted an easy to build set of chicken ark plans, with good instructions, so I could get a first hen house built quickly and cheaply.

Then I needed clear guidelines on how to look after chickens: what to feed them, how to keep them healthy, how to get the most eggs. And I needed an explanation of terms. Then I’d have been all set.

Chicken Ark” src=”http://www.thechickenark.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/04/perchingchicken530.jpg” alt=”Chickens perching on a chicken ark” width=”530″ height=”365″ />

Chickens perching on a chicken ark

Now I’ve found what I’d been looking for all that time ago: a complete set of chicken coop plans – which includes a really easy to build chicken ark, a larger hen house and a beautiful chicken house my girls would just love.

The plans are beautifully illustrated and the instructions are clear and easy-to-follow.

As well as the plans, there’s also has all the information you need to get started – what to feed your chickens on, the best breeds to go for, how to keep your chickens healthy, all in one downloadable package. So it really is what I was looking for: a complete chicken–keeping kit.

Best of all it’s only $29.95. Just think of all the time, money and worry it could save you. I’d have saved a bundle if Building a Chicken Coop had been around when I started.

You can download the whole kit here.

You can look forward to fresh eggs and a rewarding hobby. My ‘girls’ are so entertaining. Each one is a different character and sometimes I stop just to listen while they quietly cluck away, or watch them scratching around while the sun glints on speckled golden feathers.

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Chicken Arks - the Ideal First Hen House

If you’ve been thinking of keeping chickens, but you’re unsure whether you’ll want to commit long-term - and reluctant to invest too much in a swanky chicken coop, choose a chicken ark. Chicken arks can be great for beginners because they are cheap, are just right a small flock of three or four hens and you can be flexible in where you position your chicken coop.

There are some handsome tall designs of chicken ark with the roosting space above the run. But they are hard to build and very expensive to buy.

Build a Chicken Ark Yourself

We used a downloadable e-book (Building a Chicken Coop) that has detailed plans for a simple chicken ark as well as all the information you need to get sarted in keeping chickens. When you get hooked (and you will!), there are also plans for two larger fixed Chicken Coops - so your initial investment will more than pay off. The plans are well designed and thought out and the instructions are easy to follow.

As you move Chicken Arks to new patched of ground every day, your hens will effectively be free-range, but they will be protected from preadtors at all times.  Of course you can let them out while you are around to supervise - if you let them out in afternoon they will be waiting for you by the ark at dusk, or late afternoon, so you can put your chickens back easily for the night.  Tha ark has a sliding door between the roosting and nesting area and the run, so they can be shut in at night for addtional warmth and protection.

Chickens and Severe Weather

Chickens are pretty adaptable to different climates. They can tolerate cold, but do like protection from damp and if you live somewhere hot, they will appreciate some shade. That’s another adavantage of a chicken ark - you can move it so they get the sun, or more shade if it is too hot.  If it’s tricky to find a shady spot, a simple cover to shade some of the run will give them shelter from the worst of the jeat.  it’s also worth going for a breed that doen’t mind the heat. If your problem is cold winters you can insulate the roosting part of a Chicken Ark - but generally they will huddle up more closely when it is cold.

Chicken Feed

Cickens feed happily on kitchen scraps, but do need grit or small stones to digest their food. Either you can feed them a supplement or you can use the natural grit and small stones in the ground, that they will scratch up when they are foraging in the chicken ark. This is another advantage of the vhivken ark design - moving it around will naturally provide the chickens with grit.

If you put the ark on dry, dusty ground they will scoop a shallow hollow, which they will lie down in and fluff up their feathers, then they’ll flap away throwing dust over themeselves.  Dust baths help to keep mites at bay and the chickens do seem to enjoy them. You’ll enjoy watching too!

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A Chicken Ark Keeps Your Chickens Clean

Chickens are naturally clean. If their living conditions are ideal with enough space and the coop is kept clean, your chickens will usually look pretty good.

Because a Chicken Ark is designed to be moved around, the chickens get new ground to peck and graze, and to find dry spots to take a dust bath.

A chicken ark is easy and quick to make from simple chicken ark plans and means chickens can replicate natural behavior and be protected from predators – and you get to choose which parts of your backyard your chickens peck at and dust bath in.

The chickens will scratch through vegetation till they find dry, fine soil, then they make a shallow hollow where they sit and scratch so the dust gets sprayed over them.

This is Tina enjoying a bath – it illustrates the process perfectly.

One reason they take a bath, apart from the natural cleaning process, is that dust baths help keep mite infestations at bay. In addition to cleaning the chickens, dirt naturally clogs the respiratory pores of parasites, like lice and mites. When the respiratory pores of these parasites are clogged, they can no longer breathe and they die.

You will minimize mite and lice problems with a well–designed chicken ark that is easy to keep clean, and by making sure that your chickens have access to ground they can dust bathe on.

In wet weather you may want to add some sand mixed with some dry fine dirt to their chicken ark run, so your girls can still bathe easily.

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Cure Your Bullying Chickens - Separate Them in a Chicken Ark

Chickens are social animals and like company. They also establish a hierarchy within the flock – this is where the term ‘pecking order’ comes from - which can lead to bullying and pecking. Around the time they are molting, this can be a particular problem as chickens without a complete covering of feathers are more vulnerable to injury. One solution if a chicken is being picked on, is to move it into separate quarters. You could use an old rabbit hutch or dog kennel – but these are far from ideal. If you have a Chicken Ark plans”>chicken ark, this would be ideal. There’s covered space for roosting and recovery and an enclosed run for scratching and pecking around in the light. Our chicken ark plans are easy to follow and simple enough to make in less than a day. Once the chicken (or chickens) has recovered, you can introduce them back to the main flock. However, the problem can then start all over again as the re-introduced chickens are now at the bottom of the pecking order. Looks idyllic - but one of them may be a trouble-maker! If you do want to keep the vulnerable chickens longer-term, another approach is to identify the bullies and separate them in the ark, for about a month. When you re-introduce the once dominant chickens, one at a time, they will be at the bottom of the pecking order. This will of course, shake things up – and the problem may well be solved.

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Praise for ‘Building A Chicken Coop’ Book

We liked this review of the Chicken Coop Plans book. it’s always helpful to read reviews before you buy a product. Find out more, and buy the Building A Chicken Coop Book here.

“…If you are considering keeping chickens in your back yard, you must read this book. Whether you have a tiny courtyard or acres to play with, the advice will stand you in good stead and help you build the right chicken coop. The focus of the book is on being well-prepared for your flock before they even arrive. Keene ensures that you consider every issue before you spend a cent on birds, feed or equipment.

He discusses which species is appropriate for your garden, what they should eat and, as the title suggests, how you should house them. Anyone with basic do-it-yourself tools and a patch of land could follow his instructions. The drawings and diagrams are easy to interpret and the lists of materials and tools needed are very helpful. Keene also appreciates that the value of using recycled materials in your chicken coop – cheap and environmentally friendly. Keene encourages responsible husbandry – his reminder of tasks to be completed weekly, monthly and sixth monthly should be replicated onto the calendar of any careful poultry keeper.

The level of detail is just right, from a list of the color of the egg you might expect from you hen to a description of healthy hen’s poop! If you follow his tips, your happy hens will be very productive. Next we need a cookbook for ideas to use up all the spare eggs…” Tracyann - Amateur Chicken Farmer - Devon, United Kingdom

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Portable Chicken Coop A.K.A. Chicken Tractor

IMore useful info on keeping chickens. If you want to get into incubating and hatching to rear your own chickens, watch this. If you want a great set of plans to Chicken Ark</a>”>build your own chicken ark/chicken tractor plus a complete guide to keeping chickens click here.

Portable Chicken Coops are practical for the small scale poultry/chicken enthusiast. Learn all about incubating, brooding, rearing, feeding, housing and caring for chickens by viewing the DVD titled Regarding Chickens, available online through the nation’s top hatcheries.

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DIY Build a CHEAP Chicken Tractor

See our home built Chicken Tractor. This chicken tractor was used for our chickens after they outgrew the brooder.

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Tour of my chicken tractor

If you’re not lucky enough to have someone local to build you a chicken tractor (Chicken Ark), try these great chicken tractor plans.

Now taking orders for folks in the Seattle area wanting to raise hens in their back yard.

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A Simple Chicken Coop

It can be really useful to look at different chicken houses before you go ahead and set up your own. Building a chicken coop from a good set of plans is an excellent way of getting started.

Here is a short video of the setup I have for my chickens. Sorry, they were a little loud during taping. But that just shows they’re contented!

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Farmville Multiple chicken coops barn raising

Well, raising chickens has caught on in a big way - and it now it’seven become popular online! for those of you who, like me, prefer the real thing (and those lovely fresh eggs), try thse great chicken coop plans.

http://www.FarmerTips.com This video will show you how to receive multiple Chicken Coops by expanding your storage buildings. But this will only work for a short time, since zynga will be trying to quickly fix this glitch. Join this group on facebook, to get neighbors and help with expanding your buildings http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=188352031878&ref=share

Duration : 0:6:43

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Building a Chicken Coop

Bill Keane's excellent book has complete sets of plans and instructions for a chicken ark, a medium size hen house and a chicken coop that will house a larger flock. Click here to download There's also a full guide to raising and keeping chickens to get you started in this rewarding hobby.