If you have read through my blog you will see a few posts on cheap but effective ways to raise animals on your own small property. One of the posts talked about an egg mobile.

Egg-Mobile 1.0

Egg-Mobile 1.0

This contraption that I built I will call Egg Mobile 1.0. It was modified from it’s original design according to the material I had on hand. I used a lot of wood which made it heavier than desired. Though its design made it relatively easy to pull along the grass for myself, it was a little more difficult for my wife.

I recently tore it down to the pressure treated base frame. I went to tractor supply and bought 2 cattle panels that were 16′ long and about 3.5′ wide. They were $20 each. I attached the bottom of one to the inside side rail, then flexed the other end over to the other side rail board and attached it also, forming a sort of hoop house shape. I made sure that the bottom edges were attached just above the bottom edge of the boards so as to not catch on the dirt and grass while being drug. You can attach the panels in whatever way works best; large staples, screws screwed in on an angle, nails bent over…etc.

Cattle panels attached.

Cattle panels attached.

Then I attached the next panel right next to the first and joined the two in the middle with zipties about every other square to firm up the panels. Then on either end I added chicken wire, also along the sides because the panel holes are large enough for the chickens to get out if they wanted.

For a door, I had saved the one from the previous build (Egg Mobile 1.0). However,

I didn’t want to add more wood for installing the door. My wife had a great idea! She asked if I just couldn’t hinge the door sideways, on the bottom, on the wooden rail. So thats what I did. I really like the way it has turned out. The only issue is that with the door turned sideways, it is difficult to get the waterer and feeder in with ease as they are taller than the opening, and heavy when full.

I then put a tarp over the top, slightly favoring one side (the west), and slid small lengths of wood across the inside corners for perching.

Egg Mobile 2.0

Egg Mobile 2.0

Egg Mobile 2.0

Egg Mobile 2.0 

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I had been reading here and there about Joel Salatin and his pastured poultry and egg-mobiles. A few Google searches and you will find many varieties of his design that

Joel Salatin

others have used. Scouring through these photos and blogs about how folks built them and why, led me to start my own as well…that and because our chickens were disappearing one by one each night by some varmint, a possum I think.
So i decided that mine was going to make use of treated 2X4’s for the base frame and runners. The front and back board would be notched at the ends to fit over the runners and be off the ground about 1.5″ so as to make it easier for moving and so as to not trap chicken feet under the back when moving it.

Egg-Mobile

The back of the runners I cut at an angle so that it drags better. I am thinking of doing the same in the front. I was planning on using cattle or goat panels for the metal hoop frame. That was until I went to Tractor Supply and saw how much a 16 ft panel cost…$52!! So I bought a 50ft roll of fence that was less rigid. It wouldn’t form a semi-circle on its own, so that required me to do a bit of framing. This adds weight and frustration and time when building it. Though I am pleased with the finished product.
For the next one, I would like to get my hands on some used cattle/goat panels.

Back of egg-mobile


OK, I am making slow progress on my goat situation, but quite speedy unforeseen progress on the chicken side of things. I was hoping to have our goats by now, but as things come along life’s road, priorities change. We still have 2 goats reserved for us. I just need to get the time to put up the fencing!

As for the chickens, I came hoe one day to see that my wife had bought two baby chicks! Things went well and they were growing. Friends gave us some necessities, like the mason jar caps that you can use for waterers and feeders. That was a big help in keeping things clean. They got to a point where they had all their feathers and were hanging out freely in the yard. Chubby (our dog) was always on a line or inside when the chicks were out. There were a few times when the chicks were in the cage that he got a chance to run around the cage and get them in a frenzy. I cant blame him, he’s a bird dog!

Well, one day, our back deck door didn’t shut all the way, the wind blew it open, we were taking a nap, and Chubby had a golden opportunity! We woke to realize what had taken place and found the chicks. Chubbs didn’t eat them, just played with them too hard. I knelt over one and Chubby stayed away knowing he had been bad….but I would hate for this to carry over  in the field when hunting for pheasant!!

So the need for a coop suddenly went high in the priority list. We were also given two older chickens by friends of ours. One is a young white rooster and the other an older red/brown hen. We decided to keep them in the future goat shed. I made a perch for them which they love. And I started building a coop on the side of the shed. So far so good. At night they make their way back to the perch and I close the shed up, then open it in the morning. The hen was laying an egg every other day at our friends place but she hasn’t here yet. We  filled a wagon up with grass clippings in the shed hoping she would nest there. So far she has no interest.

Happy Chickens

Happy Chickens

Coop framed

Coop framed

Chickens on the perch

Chickens on the perch