University of Florida

Chicken Tractors

While the term "chicken tractor" might conjure up strange images, it's basically just a mobile coop for backyard chickens.

Much like us, chickens benefit from fresh air and exercise. A chicken tractor lets the birds enjoy these benefits while still keeping them safe from predators. You can move these floorless coops around the garden, allowing your chickens to scratch for insects. The chickens will also incorporate their waste into the soil, serving as a natural fertilizer.

Build your chicken tractor using one of many plans available online. Most have a wooden framework and wire-mesh walls, and they often include wheels to make moving the tractor easier. Be sure to pick a design that's the right size for your flock. You'll need at least three square feet per chicken.

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Chickens in portable coop, or chicken tractor
Jessica Reeder (cc-by-sa2.0)

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