My (First) Chicken Tractor

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This was the very first chicken tractor that I built back in 2007. It was a simple design, but great for just a few chickens.

If you’re wondering what a chicken tractor is, it is a movable home for chickens. Sometimes it is just a movable yard, or it is a combination. They vary in size and style, but this is ours.

At this point it is 99.99% finished. All that was left, was to attach a few latches, and that is it. We got started at 9 am that day, by running to the lumberyard for a couple more pieces of wood that I needed.

Jack enjoyed helping screw on a panel. (By the way that is PAINT on his arm!)


Jennifer and Joshua jumped in to help out by painting the frame.


Here I am stapling the chicken wire to the yard enclosure.


After we got it all together, we moved it out near the shed, and moved the young birds into their new home!

We placed them in the house portion, and they had no idea what to do with that door. So Jack climbed inside and coaxed “NeeNee” out.


The house part has two perches inside.


And here you can see the nesting boxes.


Finally they began to adventure out into their new frontier!


The tractor is moved over one space every other day to give the chickens a continual source of bugs, grass and all the good things chickens love.

By moving it so often, it will keep the chickens from destroying the section of grass that they have access to, and fertilizes the yard as it goes!


How did I Build this Chicken Tractor?

After sharing about the chicken tractor above, I had several people ask me for instructions on how to make one themselves.

I made up the plans for this on a scrap of notebook paper, and while blueprints aren’t my specialty, I will explain it below, and maybe you can use that to make your own.

I made the tractor out of:

  • 2×2’s
  • plywood
  • 2 ft chicken wire
  • 2 inch wood screws
  • staples
  • and some scraps of 2×4 (for the nesting boxes).
  • Plus a couple hinges and latches, and barn paint.

If I remember correctly, the vertical beams are just under 2 ft high.

I based it off of the chicken wire, to make sure I could staple it to the sides.

The long beams are 8 ft long, and the width beams are 4 ft long.

The house is 4 ft square, and is also made with 2 ft high vertical beams.

How Many Chickens Can Live in this?

I originally had this for 12 young birds. We let our chickens run loose, but they can’t go straight from the “nursery” to running free.

We used this as an “in-between” house.

Many people use chicken tractors as the permanent/mobile homes. If I were to do that, I would use this for about 4-5 birds at most.

It would be much too crowded for any more than that.

You might also like to check out How to Build an A-Frame Chicken Coop | The Movable “Chicken Sled”

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