Chicken Hutch / June 5, 2018 / Maryellen
It is vital that you select the right kind of materials that will not be toxic to your chickens and will provide the coop with structural rigidity. It is also important that you can easily replace them in the event of damage from the weather or just simply wear and tear. Build for your respective climate to ensure your chickens are well insulated from either the cold or excessive heat. You also dont want to have your wood rotting so treat your lumber to keep your coop standing. Many plans tend to overlook the importance of ventilation and for that reason I urge you to plan accordingly and make sure you read the reviews on the plans you are going to use. Ventilation serves an important role in keeping the coops air circulating well and keeps out any excess moisture or ammonia build up from the flocks feces. Sufficient ventilation should be accounted for because if you decide to overlook that aspect you will begin to notice a direct effect on your chickens health.
If youre raising chickens in the city then youre probably thinking that owning a large chicken coop is already out of the question. Space after all is one of the biggest limitation of urban chicken owners when it comes to building their chicken coop. So they usually make the mistake of designing their coop around the available space rather than their chickens needs. The result? Big city chickens living in cramped chicken coops. Of course the definition of what "large" is is very subjective especially in the context of the-countryside-hills-over-yonder standards versus the beyond crowded city standards. To put things into perspective lets just say that a large chicken coop in the countryside is a decent-sized apartment downtown. While a large chicken coop in the city is the walk-in closet in that decent-sized apartment downtown.
The amount of room that different breeds of chickens require may vary. Thus you should do a little research but the general rule is that each chicken should have at least 2 to 3 square feet of space for themselves. Say you have 40 chickens meaning that theyll need about 80 to 120 square feet in total. If possible always choose a plan that has more room rather than less. An 11 by 11 frame would be nice or even a 12 by 12. Although they might not be able to communicate it to you they do enjoy the extra running room. Again a bit of research will help lots. As temperatures change within the different seasons you need to be sure that your chickens dont get too hot or cold. A thermometer is always a good idea. Due to the needs of your chickens you will probably need to get some heating pads or lamps with the colder weather and cooling vents in the summer. This is all to maintain the ideal temperature even with the weather changes.