Sunday, April 17, 2011

Poultry Housing

The ducks, geese and turkeys are getting too big for the pallet brooder we made a few short weeks ago. I still can't believe how fast those geese grew. With their long necks extended they're up to my knees and still haven't fully feathered out.

I looked up Toulouse sexing and apparently the males and females are identical in coloring, behaivor and honks. I am sure now that we have 2 male ducks and 2 females. A set of Peach beaks and a set of Bright Yellow. We won't be eating these but one of the males might find a new home. I'm not sure yet. I like them all so much, only time will tell when personalities really emerge near laying/mating age.

But they all are too big to brood and we need the barn stall for hay and feed and other supplies. Ducks and geese are messy. A new house was in order. Our neighbor made a semi-circular brooder out of PVC and we saw a tutorial on for one as well. It seems a good, easy design. Quicker to build than the week-long chicken coop I built and less expensive.

Here is the PVC frame. We scored a deal for Ace Hardware which we bought the chicken wire half price. Our supply list included PVC and fittings, 2 sheets of plywood, 2 25ft rolls of chicken wire, and hinges. We used other things we had on hand from other projects to finish it off; a tarp, scrapwood, a bolt, wire. I think total we spent about $65 and have an easily moveable, built in a day, 10x4' poultry house.

Sorry for the half photos, I had the wrong lens on my camera and couldn't get far enough away to get the whole thing.

We'll be picking up a larger tarp later this week, this is all we had on hand and didn't realize it wouldn't go all the way around. For the ducks and geese this is fine. They are very hearty animals that are waterproof (once they get all their feathers). They thrive in inclimate weather. It's the turkeys we need to watch out for.

The PVC married to the wood makes it sturdy but still easy enough for me to pick up an end and carry around the yard. Since all our birds free range we can tarp the whole thing as well if we wanted to. I am considering making a smaller house to keep a pair of ducks in the garden, moving between the rows to help with bugs and weeds but for now this is where everyone will live. Hopefully happily.


  1. I love this! I need housing for my chikens this would work great. Thanks for sharing. Rebekah

  2. The trick was to NOT cut the hoop pieces in the middle. I tried this originally to allow for the ridge beam, but there was too much tension on them and they popped out of the fittings. So the curved parts are continuous, and the ridge pieces are attached with T and cross fittings. I cut out a section of these fittings so they could pop into place on the curved pieces.

  3. This is a great idea. Is it heavy enough to keep out predators?

  4. It's fairly heavy, but we put a block of concrete over one of the center bars to weight it down.

  5. Awesome and informative blog! Thanks for your very nice articles. I like this very much and look forward to visiting your blog in the future. A good poultry housing keeps the bird safe and disease free.
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