(Chicken Ark design by Catawba ConvertiCoops DIY Chicken Coop Plans)

We finished making this "chicken ark" just in time for the arrival of our all-star Rhode Island Red chooks!

(steps going up to the roost and nesting boxes)

After months of research, planning, and thinking about it all, deciding that we would 'rotate pasture' the chooks over eight different spots on our property, that Rhode Island Reds would be best suited to Wellington weather, be great foragers and deliver the right amount of eggs for our household, we were having a hard time finding pullets online. Apparently it's the wrong season and we just couldn't risk getting 'unsexed' chooks in the city.

So we rang the Upper Hutt Poultry & Pigeon Club and were recommended to get in touch with a long-time breeder in Wanganui who has decided to retire and sell his much loved ex-show-hens at remarkably fair prices. Less than half the price of anywhere else we found.

("Ah look this one still has the tag from her last show")

We decided to make a bit of a road trip of it, stopping at farmer's markets along the way, picking up a lot of delicious and freshly ground flour from the De Molen mill in Foxton, coming home at about 8:30pm with 6 lovely chooks, 3 hens in their second year of laying and 3 pullets due to lay around February (wish we had gotten some photos of us with our headlamps on trying to get the chooks into their new home in the dark.) All for the princely sum of $80 (NZD). And one of them even laid an egg in the car on the way home! Since they arrived the day before yesterday we've already had 4 more eggs! So we figure they must be happy to be here.

(double rainbow on the way home!)

(our cat's found a new pastime, they don't seem too fussed about her though)

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Comment by Christy Ralphs on October 23, 2010 at 8:35pm
nice job, both with coop construction and finding some lovely hens, you will enjoy them very much i'm sure.
Comment by Dirt Doctor Jacob&Hana on October 19, 2010 at 6:15pm
Thanks! Haven't even finished the paint job yet so stay tuned! The design is available from catawbacoops.com for $20 (USD) and is specially designed to be moveable and easy to clean (upstairs "walls" are removable as are the doors to the nest boxes on either end).
Comment by Mo Buttner-Jenkins on October 19, 2010 at 5:06pm
WOW, I just love your ark - so bright & fun! Did you use a plan to build yourself, if so where was it available from? Just brilliant how you will put to good use over your gardens...
Comment by Hester on October 19, 2010 at 4:21pm
Great story,Great hens! I'm sure you will enjoy them. Oh, and very nice ark too!


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