Chickens for Backyards can help homeowners and farmers start flocks with healthy birds of the perfect breed. However, if you’re going to start raising chickens, you’re eventually going to need a chicken coop in order to do so.
Having a chicken coop is an excellent way to get a healthy inventory of dependable and delicious eggs that you couldn’t get otherwise.
Before you start building your coop, we have a few pointers you should keep in mind
Decide How to Start
Before you can imagine your completed chicken coop, you need a plan of action that will help you create the concept you’re envisioning. You don’t want to just start building the coop while improvising each step which is a guaranteed recipe for disaster. What you need is a step-by-step instruction or a blueprint of what you want to build.
If you have experience designing smaller structures, you can create your own guideline and go off of that. If you are less design-minded, there are plenty of premade chicken coop plans out there that give you a detailed step-by-step walkthrough so the coop can come out as intended.
If you are designing your own chicken coop, you’ll have some freedom as to its design and shape, but there are a few design tips that most chicken coops should include.
First of all and most importantly, it should be predator proof. This is especially important for those who live further out in the country. There are many predators out there who would certainly go after chickens and their eggs, so precautions are needed. You can predator-proof your coop with sturdy screens on the doors, windows, and runs. To kick it up a notch, use galvanized welded wire, instead of chicken wire for extra strength.
Next, you want to make your overall coop big enough so that there is plenty of space for your chickens to sit and move comfortably. As a general rule, make it big enough, so the birds have indoor and outdoor access at all times with each bird having at least five square feet of outdoor space and four square feet of indoor space.
You would also be advised to have a covered outdoor run, so the birds have protection against any adverse weather conditions or direct sunlight.
Space for You
Of course, it is not only about providing protection for your chickens but also giving yourself the ability to work with the chickens inside the coop when needed. You would be advised to build the coop tall enough and with proper doors that give you easy access to walk into. This includes the roof over the general area and the runs. This is especially important so you can perform any necessary cleaning or maintenance without breaking your back in the process.
Happy chickens lay lots of eggs, so make the coop as comfortable as possible with included nesting boxes. As a rule, try to create one nesting box for every four chickens. You want the chickens to be attracted to the boxes so build them a foot or two off of the ground. Make life easier for yourself by creating an external access point to these nest boxes from the outside for easy egg gathering.
In addition to nesting boxes, there are a few other items that you should consider adding to your coop that will make it more comfortable for the chickens. For instance, you want to take your time choosing or building a good feeder that will give the chickens easy access to the food with a proper height that will make it easy for the chickens to eat without stress. The chickens should also have easy access to fresh water. If you have a larger coop with many chickens, consider adding multiple waterers.
Also, include plenty of windows as proper ventilation is necessary for chicken health. Having fresh air moving throughout the coop is important to avoid the respiratory diseases that chickens are sometimes susceptible to. Have the windows above the perch for draft-free ventilation in the colder months. Remember to put protective wire over the windows to keep away outside predators.
Chickens for Backyards offers great benefits which make it easy to get started raising chickens from guaranteed delivery to low minimum orders. With many different breeds to choose from and knowledgeable assistance whenever you need it, we will help you find the ideal birds. Contact us today!