How I Cut My Chicken Feed Bill To Zero
Categories: On The Farm
4 Standard size heat treated pallets
These can be had for free with almost any business that receives shipments on pallets. I source mine from a local manufacturer. They constantly have discarded pallets out front, free for the taking. You can try pet stores, small engine repair shops, hardware stores, motorcycle shops, furniture stores and lawn and garden shops. Think small operations and and always ask permission. If your too shy, search Craigslist for free pallets. I just did a quick search and found 4 free sources of pallets in my area. Here’s one of the best:
Make sure you get heat treated (HT) pallets, not pressure treated. Each pallet should be labeled. If it’s not labeled, just adopt the policy of “when in doubt, throw it out”. You don’t want those chemicals in the foundation of your food supply.
- Pitch Fork – for pitching the compost.
- Wheel barrow – for bringing in compost material and hauling off the finished goods.
- 4, small ropes, bungies or some other kind of strap.
Continual Flow of Compost in Just 5 Weeks!
Have your compost material assembled near the entrance of your run so it’s easily accessible. Better yet, put it just outside the fence where your pile will be, if you can throw it over.
If you’re using a temporary electric net for your fencing you can bring in the corner where you’ll be working to keep the chickens out of your way. See the sequence of the two pictures below:
You can check the temperature of the pile throughout the week with a compost thermometer. Your ideal heat is between 130-160 fahrenheit. If it’s not getting hot enough within 24 hours it’s probably not wet enough and/or you have too much carbon brown material and need to mix in some more green material when you turn the pile next week.
Fill the bin with your compost material, being sure to mix and water along the way. This week, as you feed your chickens your food scraps, just add it to the top of the pile. They’ll add their manure and eat all the edibles on top. Be sure to provide a ladder or ramp to help the birds get up and down safely. Here we are filling the bin…