Making it a bit easier – Laying Boxs on the easy

Like it or not we all lead very busy lives and the amount time we can get things done in impacts on what else we can get done.

Time should be treated as, as much of a resource as water, soil or anything else required to live your life. And it is very much a non renewable resource, once gone it will not be back. The effective use of that time is what allows us to enjoy the sit down and the time spent with kids, family and friends.

I harp on about how every dollar is time out of your life the less you have to spend the less you have to make the more time you have to enjoy yourself. Pretty simple equation.

I try to tackle the regular jobs that need to be done as efficiently as I can. Getting the setup of this helps out a lot and I was reminded of this morning when I needed to clean out the chickens laying box’s before work.

needs to be cleaned

For a lot of years I had an old 44 gallon drum that I used to use as a chicken laying box in my chicken run. It was something I inherited from my sister with her chickens when she moved north. It sort of worked as the rest of my chicken run was from recycled hard waste. It kept the chickens out of the way and provided them with a space to lay in. The problem with it was that to clean it out was a pain. It meant that I had to reach all the way in and drag out the old straw. The task was messy and unpleasant as you ended covered in dust and chicken manure. It was also time consuming and the combination meant it happened a little less often than would be optimal.

The other big problem was that it was dark and had lots of nooks and crannies could easily lead to lice and other pests not being cleared out of the laying box allowing for reinfestation.  

When I mentioned this process clean out process to a girl at work she said her dad of Sicilian decent just used large plastic pots as laying boxes. Easy to clean easy to handle and can be washed out and left to dry in the sun giving the nasties a good dose of UV to kill them off.

I had no spare large pots but I did have some large plastic barrels used for importing olives that I had picked up.

So I cleared out the old 44 gallon drum out of the shed and cut the plastic barrel in half and washed it out thoroughly and viola as below I had laying box’s setup. A board at the front to stop the chicken kicking out the straw and it was finished.

Where as before the clean out took 15-20 minutes of messy work the clean out now takes 30 seconds dump the contents into the compost bin.

emptied out

Give them a quick squirt out with water if required and dry. emptie out and ready for straw

Fill with straw and done. Maybe two minutes on average and can be done in my work clothes without any worry of getting messed up.

all clean

Mine are on the ground as my birds seem to prefer not to roost but you could easily put them on a shelf up a bit higher if you wanted to as they weigh next to nothing.

I am going to be sharing a few ideas on my chicken run. Partially because i promised it when i started this blog but also my friend Libby from libby cooks is building a new chicken run so it seems like an opportune time to post on the subject.

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