Chicken House / May 29, 2018 / Maryellen
Natural light is the best answer here so be sure and have the coops window facing south where it will get most light and natural warmth especially in the winter months. There are also some chicken keepers that have installed electric lighting in the apex of the coops roof as this will keep the chickens laying eggs throughout the year there are a variation of lights that can be used depending on the size and type of coop that you are building. This is more of a tip than anything else but it can save you a lot of frustration. Chickens tend to knock everything with their feet this includes food and feeders. An ideal solution to save having a constant mess on the coop floor is to raise the feeders and waterers to the height of the chickens shoulder this way they can only get their heads in the feeders and not their feet as well.
To protect your little egg producing friends safe from predators you will want to bury the run wall supports and chicken wire as deep as you are able over a foot where possible this should be deep enough to stop most predators digging under. It is paramount to make sure that your chickens remain happy and more-so healthy. There are many enhancements that you can add or make to their living quarters in order to achieve this. Chickens are susceptible to the elements much the same as humans and it is important to think of them in this way. You can help by adding things like insulation to the walls of the coop to stop cold drafts and damp winds blowing through. They will want and need ventilation but not so it disrupts their environment too much. It should be stated here that a damp chicken environment can and will cause your chickens ill health. Cold they can handle as long as they do not get damp.
Before you can start on construction you will need to clear any obstacles which may hinder or complicate matters later one. Since your chickens require plenty of light you will need to cut any trees which may block sunlight to the chicken house. Not only that it will actually keep your chicken warms during those extreme winter conditions. Next you will need to decide what type of chicken coop you are looking for. Are you looking for an extravagant double floored mansion with a ramp that connects both floors? Or do you prefer a plain and basic one just to fulfill the shelter needs of your chickens? Keep in mind however that chicken coops can get dirty very easily so you may want to consider building a chicken coop that is easy to clean.