It seems that even chicken stuff can build up and start to clutter your life. I find that I like to save little pieces of wire, newspaper, plastic and metal containers and anything else that might ever come in handy with the chickens. I also have held onto the chick feeders, chick waterers and the heat lamp. You never know when you might have a sick bird or when you are going to order more chicks! It was time to get organized.
I needed to devise a practical storage area that took up very little space in our garage. I also wanted to have a work table that offered storage underneath. I also needed to deal with chipmunks invading the garage looking for any dropped wild birdseed, chicken scratch or feed. They are pretty fearless for their size.
I must preface this with the fact that I have NEVER built anything in my life other than a ready to assemble IKEA bookshelf. However, I knew that there were some carpentry genes in my blood and that I had some left over lumber in the garage. I took inventory of the tools and things that I had and then I went over to Home Depot. With a little assistance, I was able to purchase the nails, a saw, and some more lumber.
It took me about two hours by myself to complete including all the sawing. My arm was so tired but I am a sissy for powertools. My neighbor acted as a consultant, checking in on me here and there. Finally voila, my work/storage table was complete. It is nothing fancy. It measures about 6 feet in length, stands about 4 feet tall so that I don’t have to bend down too far and is about 2 and 1/2 feet wide. My table is far from perfect but it is very sturdy with the crossbeams and serves its purpose.
Underneath, I have stored all the food and scratch in metal garbage cans. I love these. They are easily accessible and if neighbors are watching the girls while we are away, I can easily tote them outside. When the chicken sitters are helping out, I place the grit, diatomaceous earth and the oyster shells in smaller containers then put them into the largest garbage can. Finally, I secure the lid with a bungee cord to prevent any predators like raccoons from getting at the food while the containers are outside. It is very important that you never empty any feed or scratch directly into the containers. The metal can leech into the chicken food and end up poisoning your flock and possibly you by eating their eggs. I keep the feed in the bags and place those directly into the cans.
On top of the table, I have ample workspace for filling feeders, repairing objects, building things and storing items too. Items that I store on top of the table are the grit, diatomaceous earth, and oyster shells. In the pampers box I store things like the newspaper, heat lamps, old feeders and waterers, syringes for antibiotics, hanging chains, spare parts and the like. Being tight on space doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy backyard chickens. Sometimes you just have to get creative.