The Camper Coop is finally getting started!

The chicks are getting big fast, and their 2 sq ft a chick in the brooder is getting small FAST! My Mountain Man has started gutting the camper to turn it into the chicken camper.

Or at least, we started gutting it then it started snowing every day. I am so weary of winter. Spring is tantalizingly close, but winter just keeps hanging on and on.

We were given the camper for free last summer when it was headed to the scrap yard. We parked it at the Red Barn farm until we could figure out a project for it, and it was enjoyed by wasps and mice over the fall and winter seasons. Now it is time to gut it, patch it, and create the Chicken Camper!

3-17 2353-17 2423-17 2413-17 2373-17 2393-17 2383-17 243

Chicken Camper

Here I am, again, thinking about chickens when I should be sleeping! Our chicks will arrive in 2 weeks and spend the tail end of winter growing in their brooder in the basement. We will be building the new coop outside while they are safe and warm down there.

We were given a free camper last summer that is just getting too rough to comfortably camp in with the 3 little mud bugs.  It is starting to show it’s age and not so perky about keeping the rain outside . But, it was FREE! Free is pretty much always awesome! (Unless it’s a free goldfish. “Free” goldfish always end badly.)

After deciding not  to try to make the repairs necessary for using it to camp, we agreed to turn  it into a chicken camper.  We have enough scrap lumber around to make it almost free. Again, free=awesome. Not necessarily pretty. Heck, usually not even remotely pretty. But I’m cheap so I’ll take it!

After scoping out Google, it became obvious that there aren’t very many chicken camper inspiration photos. Which means I will be compulsively photographing the entire process to help inspire any other crazy people who look at a a camper and think,  “A camper for camping? Nah, let’s fill it with chickens. They can be all happy and lay eggs and poop everywhere.”

Once it is complete, it will painted with beautiful designs by my oldest mud bug baby. She is lobbying hard for painting the whole thing to look like cats. Um? Really, mud bug? Still with the cats?

It seems a little rude to paint the outside of the coop with cartoon-ish cat faces painted by a 6-year-old who thinks everything should have a cat or two included. Especially considering she wants to paint cats that look like our cat. The same cat that will certainly be sitting outside of chicken land, wanting to eat them.

Maybe I can distract her with painting flowers or rainbows.  Anything but animals that want to turn the poor chickens into a meal.

Is it spring yet?

Today it is a balmy 14 degrees.

Two weeks ago, we had a bizarre winter thaw weekend and it was 70 degrees in the sunshine out in the yard. Nothing like a warm spell to get your blood screaming for spring and get the kids trying to kick their shoes off all day.

january sort 410

70 degrees and dandelions in bloom on January 13th.

We took advantage of that heat wave to put up some posts for the chicken coop run.

Let's dig some post holes!

Let’s dig some post holes!

The easiest way to check the hole for depth is apparently asking a two year old!

Almost deep enough!

Almost deep enough!

Always time in the day to make new friends!

Present for you, Mommy!

Present for you, Mommy!

Sand in the coop?

I just found a great article with lots  of tips I want to incorporate into my coops! Any one else use sand instead of pine chips? I think it could be great with some diatomaceous earth, but I want to hear from others!

Here is the article and her coop curtains are adorable! 5 Tips for a Cleaner Coop with Less Effort! — Community Chickens.

Chook Box

Finished our brooder box ahead of schedule! One expandable, comfy, cat-proofed baby chick  playground! The Mountain Man had plenty of scraps in the wood pile, so it was all free. Total cost so far $10 for light bulbs and a new thermometer. It sure  isn’t pretty, but it’s stout and warm with room to grow!

Chook Box for the  babies

Chook Box for the babies

Adventures in chooks

Pretty excited to have put in our hatchery order for this spring. Our current layers are getting older now and ready to rest, so we put in our hatchery order and now we wait. This will be the first time we have had chicks that our kids can see, so it’s even more exciting. I will be posting the progress of our brooder box and converting an old camper we were given into our chicken coop!