Collaborate2011

Chicken Run, Elia Charalambides

In Elias Charalambides, nonfiction, visual on July 27, 2011 at 5:21 pm

Chicken Run→

Chicken Characteristics from "Permaculture: A Designer's Manual"

Chickens can do far more than just produce eggs and meat. In a permaculture garden they:

  • Control pests
  • Warm a greenhouse in the winter with just their body heat
  • Produce high quality fertilizer
  • Produce feathers which can be used domestically or composted as a high value nutrient
  • Turn the soil as they scratch for insects
  • Effectively mow areas of vegetation when left to their own devices
  • Devour kitchen scraps and turn them into eggs and meat
  • Are very entertaining

By growing fodder plants in or around their run (with adequate protection from the chickens of course) it greatly reduces the amount of feed you need to buy. While easy to keep, chickens need protection from wild predators and undisciplined dogs.  Chickens need a roost to lay their eggs and sleep at night. While there are many hardy varieties they do need a relatively controlled ambient. Neither freezing temperatures nor excessive heat nor exposure to extreme weather conditions without protection. Just like any pet there are hundreds of breeds to choose from, especially heirloom ones. Some are smarter than others while some are noisier than others. Some have very decorative plumage while others lay blue eggs! Some are specified more as egg layers while others are considered “meat birds” and once you start breeding them yourself with a nice proud cock, the possibilities are endless.

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