I grew up on a farm in rural Kalona. While my dad farmed only part time, it was enough to give me a real love and desire for farming full time. Since those growing up years I’ve been acquiring the necessary skills, knowledge, and equipment to make a farm run. The icing on the cake being an apprenticeship with Polyface Inc., a world-renowned farm for ecologically sound, community based, and family friendly farming practices.
I seek to minister to the food needs of the Iowa City and surrounding areas using these same farming practices. I’ve embarked on my own entrepreneurial farming saga. Producing clean, healthy, and nutritious food that is so good it just jumps off the plate and slaps you in the face. I implement practices that restore land, environment, and community.
My goal is to create a farm that provides for people’s needs in a way that is best for the land, animals, water quality, environment, producer, consumer, and community as a whole. My farm is the positive food alternative in a time when food quality is on the decline. You’re always welcome here, and when you come I hope you can see firsthand my farm mission:
<span>To provide farm products that nurture my customers and enhance our community using farming practices that care for creation. </span></div>
How to Prepare the Chicken Coop Nest Box & Ladder
Farmer Galen Bontrager demonstrates how to build the nest box area and the ladder for that nest box.
Galen Bontrager: Hello! My name is Galen Bontrager, I am the owner and operator of Galen Bontrager Farm based out of Wellman, Iowa and in this video we are showing you how to assemble a chicken-coop. We have come to the second step here now of building the nest box area and the ladder for that nest box. To accomplish our next step with assembling the nest box; the first we will do is we assemble this back piece and we screw that up at both ends, we measure about eight inches off the ground, 8-9 inches and set that piece in place, screw both ends. Next we put in our two by six in the front; again this needs to be a little longer that four foot, about 49 and a half so that it sets squarely on the bottom bracing as opposed to budding into it, 00:54 more strength that way.
I screw in on both sides at this end, screw both sides at the other end and then I set in our top pieces. Again those are about 14 inches long and set those up and screw those in on both ends then I move to the other top piece to screw on both ends. Next I do these, put in the base boards and those are cut a little shorter then 48 and you can screw two, two on each screws in each board and then do that on second board and on both ends. Now we can put in our nest box plate and the covering dividers so there is room for few more hens; bend that piece of metal and put that in place; there is a hole there we can screw through and screw one and two and then one and two on the other metal piece.
Now we are ready for our ladder; to do that we get our first hinge mounted, we use these three inch square hinge and we use that. Now we are switching over to a quarter inch driver for these three quarter inch screws; we fasten the hinge down with that then we fasten our other piece on rift one by six and make our lengthwise piece, fasten the hinge together and fasten that piece to the hinge. Then we do that on the other side, do the same thing fasten our hinge down and then fasten the hinge to the other piece that will swing down now we have two free swinging pieces. Next we pull in a few more pieces, these are one by six. We switch back to our Phillips head screwdriver and then these -- remember I cut a little bit shorter than 48, they are actually 45 inches so that they swing freely without hitting the cross bracing or anything else on the sides of the pen and we fasten those down, I screw two screws in each and fasten that together. Now we set up our hook to close the nest box up at night. With this we swing the ladder up and we set our screws so we know where we can hook it at and in the up position, tie off your twine at the particular spot; it is there so we will hold in that position when it's closed at night that completes the step for this process with the nest box assembly and now we are ready to move on to the next step which is to assemble the cover for the top of this pen.