Chicken House / May 29, 2018 / Maryellen
When you are building your chickens coop you will want to use only high quality timbers and materials as this will pay dividends further down the road and save you even more money by reducing running repairs and coop maintenance. Try and think of the cleaning aspects and how best to make it easily cleanable either by holes for water to run through or sloping floors etc with water escapes for when you are hosing out. Always try and build your coop on a raised level and not sitting on dirt or grass as this will only add to rotting problems. Also try and get a good amount of sunlight on it as this will keep it nice and dry even after a rain shower so place where it will get plenty of sun. This keeps a certain amount of heat in the coop and helps chickens stay warm throughout the night.
Breeders are often faced with choosing between a small chicken coop or something larger and this decision is dependent on factors such as the number of chickens to be bred. The size of the building must be right for the number of chickens. A chicken coop will provide ease of access and use so that the chickens can be properly fed and exercised increasing their ability to lay eggs. If the intention is to raise no more than four or five chickens then a small coop will be ideal. A small number of chickens in a small coop can provide eggs for a single family. Fewer chickens are easier to monitor and control which means they will remain healthier with less possibility of spreading disease. A chicken coop makes it easier to collect eggs and is also much easier to keep clean.
Protection. You need to keep your chickens safe from all sorts of predators such as foxes coyotes hawks raccoons and rats just to name a few. The structure should be strong and no part of it should be able to be pushed over by a person. That is just the way I rate the strength of my coops...Could I push it over? If no then it is strong enough. There should be no way for rats or foxes to get into your chicken coop to kill your chickens. make sure the fencing goes all the way to the ground. You should also put the wire fencing down under the ground for about 1 foot out from the wire fence. This means when a fox digs at a fence they will simply hit the wire mesh and will eventually give up or try something else. Use mesh that raccoons cant get their arms through. I recommend using 1/2 inch square wire mesh for all the wire mesh fencing on the chicken coop. This will keep your chickens safe and it also looks quite attractive. Remember foxes are quite wily so check over your chicken coop plans to make sure they are predator proof.