There is a discussion on the James Oliver site asking if a free-range bird can have hock burns. There are statements that a free-range chicken could develop hock burn due to exposure to mud.

A chicken tractor (sometimes called an ark) is a movable chicken coop lacking a floor. By moving it to fresh pasture daily the chickens would not be exposed to bare earth plus all the chicken tractors that I've seen include shelter from rain, wind and other weather. Is this likely to reduce the chance of hock burn?

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    Do you mean hock burn or "mud scabs"? Wikipedia says "These marks are where the ammonia from the waste of other birds has burned through the skin of the leg, leaving a mark." If you move them to fresh pasture daily, there would be no ammonia to burn through their skin. I have seen these chicken tractors being recommended permaculture practice, so I think any question about it belongs on this site. I am just not sure what exactly your question is...
    – Earthliŋ
    Feb 23, 2013 at 0:44
  • This question leaves too little space to answer. Should be reformulated.
    – Peter Ivan
    Feb 23, 2013 at 20:55
  • @user1205935 I had not considered the possibility that some other condition could have been mistaken for (or misrepresented as) hock burn. Thanks for pointing that out.
    – user290
    Feb 24, 2013 at 22:17
  • @KenStailey I just read the link you provided...
    – Earthliŋ
    Feb 24, 2013 at 23:40
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    The question is closed-ended which means the only appropriate answers look something like the one @StuntGirl posted which is of limited utility.
    – OCDtech
    Feb 25, 2013 at 21:13

1 Answer 1


yes. it will reduce hock burn.

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    This answer needs backing up to be useful, with a reference, or at least a personal experience. Otherwise, you could just be guessing! Feb 24, 2013 at 7:52
  • How is it helpful, what should we look for in a tractor, are the other alternatives that are equally effective?
    – user141
    Feb 25, 2013 at 15:23

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