Chicken Commitments

I have been wanting to share a secret with you all for quite a while now. A few months ago Omlet asked if I would mind testing one of their new products, and to tell you the truth it has been life changing! People always ask me if taking on chickens is a commitment, and even after all the research I did, I still don’t think I was as prepared for the amount of “commitment” they would take. I was a tad naïve and the excitement of beginning my small holding, overtook any concerns.

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The girls like to get up at first light and for me to have even just an hour lie in, would leave me feeling guilty when I see them desperate to get out of their coop. Every morning would begin with waking up at the crack of dawn. Despite the weather, day or plans, I would still wake up with the sunrise and drive to my lottie. It wasn’t a problem as I loved to see the girls emerge from their coop, sleepy eyed but eager for the day of scratching the dirt and dustbathing. However on those rare occasions you would find yourself dreaming of having a lie in.

Similarly in the evening I would go to the lottie around an hour before sunset, to give the girls a run around, some corn and finally tuck them in for the night. As the year goes by this time would change daily. In winter I would even leave work early to make sure I could put the girls away before darkness. Call me crazy but I would do anything to keep my girls safe and happy. After hearing horror stories of people coming home an hour later than usual, to find a fox had got into the chicken run and killed all the chickens. Those stories are heart breaking. Just like the mornings, I would make sure my evening plans revolved around the girls and sunset.

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Omlete got in touch and asked if I would mind testing their new automatic door. I literally jumped at the chance! The delivery arrived and I had no idea what to expect, but I was really impressed. The auto door took me around 20 minutes to fit, simply unbolting the roof and screwing it in place. The girls thought this was highly entertaining as they pecked my feet whilst I worked. You could either set it at a time to open and close, or you could set it to 15 minutes after the light quality reduces to a certain percentage. I didn’t expect you to be able to set it so accurately to suit you, it filled me with confidence. I went for the timer program so my girls wake at 7am every morning, when the risk of Mr Fox has passed. In the evenings I set it to close 15 minutes after sunset. I was a tad worried about the door shutting on one of the girls but it moves fairly slowly and gives the girls plenty of warning. Plus it has a “crush detector”, so if anything gets in the way, it won’t close.

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I couldn’t be more impressed with the door. Now at the weekends I can wake up late and go see the girls midmorning. I can go out for dinner and not have to worry about getting home at a certain time. Such a small thing has made such a big difference to mine and the girls lifestyle. I don’t think there are many people that keep chickens purely for their eggs. We all want to give the best life for our chickens, especially as mine have been rescued from a horrible battery farm. So for the girls to have consistency, waking up at the same time every day, having as long as possible to roam around as they please, and then put themselves to bed knowing that they are going to be safe. Is just perfect for us!

I’ll be happy to answer any questions about the door so please do get in touch.

 

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4 thoughts on “Chicken Commitments

    1. Hi, this one is for the mk1 and mk2 but you can also put it on the run or even a wooden coop. I’m not sure about the classic but worth a ask. Contact them over social media and I’m sure someone will get back to you with a answer 😊

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  1. Hi Hayley, thanks for sharing your experience. Having just taken on another allotment with the aim of keeping chickens but slightly worried about getting started. I think the omlet door will come in handy as I too have work commitment.
    Would you recommend any particular chicken coop brand or retailer? What do I have to look for in a coop?
    Thanks

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    1. Hi, exciting times for you! It was the best decision I made 🙂 yes it was a real struggle without the door and as you say work commitments. Based on what you’ve said it sounds like you need something easy. You can go for a traditional wooden coop however they are quite a lot of work. Coops are a breeding ground for all sorts of nasties but the worst is red mite. From what I’ve read, no matter how much you clean a wooden coop, the red mite are still in the grain of the wood making it very difficult to keep the numbers down. With my plastic coop, I clean the girls out once a week which takes around 20 minutes and do a deep clean every couple of months. With being down the allotment, I slide out the perching area (which is the dirtiest bit) put it in my water butt and use a brush to clean it. I like to think the nutrients going into the water is good for my plants too! Plastic is so much easier to clean and in the year I’ve had the coop, I’ve not had one bug to contend with. Plus it still looks like new! The other biggest factor you need to consider is safety. I think having the girls at the allotment requires more thought than your garden. The Omlet Eglu (which I have) has a built in wire skirt that runs around the outside of the coop which stops animals digging under. I have also laid a row of paving slabs on top just to be extra cautious! Also means I don’t get muddy feet in the winter. I cant comment on other coops as I have only tried the Omlet but can 100% recommend it. It is more expensive than the others but it really is worth it. So safe, secure, plenty of room for the girls and easy to clean! Hope that helps 🙂

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