As a consumer I want eggs from Free-Range chickens. As a farmer, how do you protect from predators when you have up to 900 free-range birds roaming about on your farm?
Ferme-Reveuse, a local family-owned and operated farm in Curran, Ontario about 40 minutes outside of Ottawa, has found a successful, creative solution. Mobile chicken coops that have flaps that allow the chickens the ability to go in and outside as desired and that move daily to allow for fresh pasture.
What does a mobile chicken coop look like?
To allow the chickens to be free range and pastured, the open-air coops, with outside access, and attached not only electric wires to keep out predators, but heavy chains to attach them to a tractor to pull them to fresh grass every 24 hours.
The chickens can come and go out of that orange flap during the day, at night they stay inside the coop. Each morning the coop is moved just enough to provide new pasture daily. There’s water in the coop and I have to say, the birds seem pretty happy.
What about predators?
Having recently read Fantastic Mr. Fox with my 9-year-old, we knew all too well about how much predators like to capture chickens. We asked, how often do they lose chickens to predators?
The answer, from the ground, none. The only predator that has managed to capture a chicken in recent years was a crow, and that he’s seeing the laying hens actually fight off incoming crows to keep themselves safe. Imagine that!
Ferme-Reveuse sells both Broiler chickens, chicken liver, soup bones and eggs. Two different species of chickens for two different purposes. Both raised in the outdoor mobile chicken coops, with access to fresh pasture and the ability to roam.
When making a purchasing decision about eggs and meat, there is so much confusion about what conditions the chickens are actually living in. This visit to Ferme-Reveuse gave me the absolute confidence that these chickens are raised in the best possible conditions to ensure their well-being and to provide our customers with ethical local eggs and chicken.
You can buy Ferme-Reveuese Eggs here and their Chickens here. We also have chicken bones for soup and chicken liver from them. Oh, and if you are looking to try something new, we also have their Ferme-Reveuse Spaetzle.