Chickens On The Balcony, Or How I Made A Chicken Coop In An Apartment. Photo

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Chickens On The Balcony, Or How I Made A Chicken Coop In An Apartment. Photo
Chickens On The Balcony, Or How I Made A Chicken Coop In An Apartment. Photo

Video: Chickens On The Balcony, Or How I Made A Chicken Coop In An Apartment. Photo

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Video: Apartment/ Duplex | No Land Or Backyard Chicken Coop - Part 1 2023, January
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Once, while visiting friends, I accidentally walked out onto the balcony of their apartment on the tenth floor of a seventeen-story building in the city center and was almost taken aback - about a dozen neat cells were stacked on top of each other. Of course, it was not the cells themselves that surprised me, but their inhabitants. They were … chickens! Yes, yes, the most common chickens! As I learned a little later, the owners kept them for more than a year, because they were obsessed with healthy eating and organic products. In this regard, the eggs from the balcony chickens were far from the last place in the menu of this family. Chickens rushed regularly, which allowed the owners to even sell part of the laid eggs to neighbors.

Chickens on the balcony, or How I made a chicken coop in an apartment
Chickens on the balcony, or How I made a chicken coop in an apartment

Content:

  • Why I decided to have chickens on the balcony
  • How I built a chicken coop in the corner of the loggia
  • Organization of a roost for chickens in a balcony chicken coop
  • Buying chickens

Why I decided to have chickens on the balcony

At that time I did not delve into the details and all sorts of nuances of keeping chickens on the balcony. First, it was required to somehow digest the very fact of what he saw. Chickens in the city! Until this moment, I could not even imagine that this is possible in principle. Nonsense! And tell me someone that in a year I myself will be interested in the topic of keeping chickens at home, I would just laugh in his face.

But now, a year has passed. It so happened that for some time I was left without work. I sat at home, counting every penny. In the refrigerator - a rolling ball. It was in those days that the thought occurred to me to try to have chickens in my own apartment. At least I won't die of hunger, there will always be a fresh egg to the table, I reasoned.

In addition, he believed that raising chickens in small numbers was the simplest thing. Actually, nothing is required of you. He fenced off a corner, stocked up on food for his layers, and then just know for yourself - collect eggs. If you want, eat them yourself, but if there are surpluses, you can sell them.

How I built a chicken coop in the corner of the loggia

I did not see a problem with the allocation of a place for a mini-chicken coop in the apartment. I had a fairly spacious glazed loggia, a third of which could be allotted for a useful business.

I immediately imagined how I would partition it off with a lattice made of some kind of chain-link mesh, arranging a small door in this partition. Then it remains to put a feeder there, a bowl of water, after which you can safely start chickens into the corral. I would only have to sit in a chair and "smoke bamboo", waiting for the first eggs from them, as a reward for my righteous labors.

Perhaps it was the fact that this matter seemed to me quite simple from the outside, and pushed me to implement the idea with a chicken coop. I did not put it on the back burner. True, I did not find a chain-link in hardware stores near my home (for the city, this is definitely not a commodity for sale), but I got hold of a roll of wire mesh, which finishing workers usually use when plastering walls.

At the moment, when I was already walking along my loggia with a tape measure in my hand, in order to determine which piece of this lattice I should first cut off, I suddenly thought: would the volume of space for several chickens be too large? Not the area of ​​the loggia allotted to them, but the space.

I confess, I thought at that moment not so much about the chickens themselves, but about the possibility of somehow saving on their maintenance. Although I had no experience in breeding chickens, I still knew some general principles for handling poultry. No wonder, as a child, my parents sent me on summer and winter vacations to my grandmother's village, and now they themselves keep chickens there!

So, for example, I knew that in winter in village chicken coops they often leave a light bulb on all night, at least some warmth comes from it. And especially advanced village poultry farmers even install a special infrared lamp for heating.

In the future, closer to winter, I was also going to get a similar one, but already the thought of it was enough for a logical conclusion - it would be necessary to warm it not so much the chickens themselves, but the under-ceiling space of the loggia! After all, heat, according to the laws of physics, rises up.

Having thought about it a bit, I decided to reduce the height of the future chicken coop to one meter, providing it with a removable lattice roof. According to my calculations, this option will give several advantages at once. In winter, for example, you can put glass on it, which will keep some of the warm air under it.

In addition, a low roof will help solve the lighting problem. After all, city lights literally flood my loggia with light and at night, which, as I thought, could disorient chickens about the time of day. I assumed that if you throw a blanket over this makeshift roof at night, the problem with the light would be easily solved, and my chickens would get a semblance of a small but cozy bedroom.

The height of the balcony chicken coop should not be too large, so as not to warm the air in winter
The height of the balcony chicken coop should not be too large, so as not to warm the air in winter

Organization of a roost for chickens in a balcony chicken coop

As a result, having already thought about the comforts of living in the chicken coop directly of the bird itself, I remembered that it is desirable for chickens, in addition to a feeder and drinker, to have a roost. In this regard, the idea immediately occurred to me to fix a pair of perches (as if in two steps) near the far end wall of the projected chicken coop. And so that the birds, located on the upper rostrum, do not rest their scallops against the ceiling lattice, I came up with this very ceiling not horizontally, but at an angle, raising it an additional 30 centimeters above the upper roost near the end wall. In this way I made the ceiling tilted towards the front of the chicken coop.

This decision seemed correct to me. The only embarrassing thing was that it would not be very convenient to clean the droppings from under the perches. So I was also puzzled by the theme of cleanliness in the home of my future chickens. In general, how to clean such a small chicken coop? That with a shovel or a garden hoe, that's understandable, but where to put the chickens? They will get in the way!

The idea of ​​arranging sliding pallets under the slatted floor was not my innovation. For many townspeople, she quite successfully worked in the construction of small cages for all sorts of parrots and canaries. Of course, making a giant pallet for a chicken coop with a total area of ​​more than two square meters is probably just not very reasonable. But the principle itself …

He interested me, as a result of which I figured out how to reduce the floor area of ​​the pen so that the size of the litter tray could be significantly reduced proportionally.

According to my estimates, this can be achieved with the help of a sheet of iron, if it is fixed under the perches, with an appropriate slope, parallel to the sloped ceiling. In addition, it will be more convenient to clean off droppings from a smooth iron.

I saw a similar design in the village chicken coops, but there the iron fixed in a similar way was used mainly to protect the chickens wandering under the roosts from the feces of the girlfriends located above.

Taking into account that all the materials were prepared ahead of time, it took me only a few hours to build the chicken coop according to this plan. And I never imagined that I would cope with this task so quickly. Didn't forget to make a feeder and put together a couple of nest boxes from the boards, where the chickens could lay eggs.

The hen house should have nest boxes where chickens can lay eggs
The hen house should have nest boxes where chickens can lay eggs

Buying chickens

The chicken coop is great! Now I just couldn't wait to populate it as soon as possible. Having estimated the optimal number of future tenants, I settled on five hens and one rooster. Where can we go without it?

The next day I went out of town, to one small private poultry farm, where, as knowledgeable people told me, it was possible to buy pullets, which in a month and a half will begin to rush. I didn't understand the breeds of chickens. I just bought the ones that were offered to me by the seller. As he transplanted them into a cardboard box, he kept praising his product. But I, looking at the pullets, naively asked him: where is the cock?

The seller, grinning, enlightened me that, of course, I could buy a cockerel from him, but these hens do not have to have a “man in the house”, they will rush without him. The only thing is that the eggs from under them will remain unfertilized, and if I decide to put a hen on them or try to hatch the chickens in an electric incubator, then nothing will come of this idea. For the rest, eggs from "unmarried" hens will not differ in any way from those to the appearance of which, in a sense, the rooster would have been involved.

I thought it was for the best. Deep in my heart, I even feared that if a rooster settled on my loggia, I would have to listen to complaints not only from neighbors, but also from residents of the entire microdistrict, who are unlikely to like that early in the morning they would have to wake up from rooster singing. Well, one less problem.

The young girls settled into their new home pretty quickly. I couldn't find a place for myself on the first day. Almost every hour I went out to the loggia to check my birds. Or, rather, myself. It did not fit in my head that I now have … chickens living on the loggia.

But a month later, to my great joy, I already held in my hand the first egg they laid!

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