Housing structures for grassland hens
Housing structures for animals: Pasture for birdsGrassland chicken rearing is commonly used in large, extensive production, small farms and medium-sized producers. It consists of gathering eggs from hens which are allowed to graze freely as well as having a hut or hen house. Grassland chicken rearing is commonly used in large, extensive production, small farms and medium-sized producers. It consists of gathering eggs from hens which are allowed to graze freely as well as having a hut or hen house where they are protected by poultry net preventing other animals from entering. The housing structures for this system generally consist of the following:
- A chicken coop or shed for the hens: Where the birds are kept overnight and in extremely cold temperatures. It is usually a type of barn with two doors (one on each side), alongside the pasture ground where the birds are kept, with the door opening onto the grassland kept open. Any inner divisions required can be made using chicken wire. The outer rim of the grassland area is sectioned off using a good quality chicken wire or poultry net.
- Feeders: To be located inside the coop. They can be circular or canoe-shaped.
- Watering troughs: To be located inside the coop, alongside the feeders. Care should be taken that water from the watering troughs doesn’t get the food wet.
- Beds: These should be on the opposite side to the feeders and watering troughs.
- Nests: Inside the coop, usually between the watering troughs and the beds.
- Grazing areas: There should be at least two grazing areas so that the birds can be rotated from one to the other. These zones must be completely surrounded with poultry net to stop other animals from entering. Grass and fodder which the birds can eat should be grown in these areas.
- Storage: A place inside or alongside the coop where food, other consumables and a supply of poultry wire can be stored.
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