Chicken Coop / May 31, 2018 / Maryellen
Another way you can decrease the money you will spend is by finding free materials. Yes it is possible. Just ask around if some of your neighbors dont have spare pieces of wood they dont plan to use. You will be surprised how much stuff you will receive. However if all the above methods dont work for you I recommend to hold building your chicken coop for some time. It is better to wait until you save an appropriate amount of money then rush into construction. This will insure you are building a chicken coop that will last long and not some low-quality dummy that will fall apart faster than you have built it. Your time limitations are very important when you are discovering how to build a chicken house. If you have problems finding an hour every week to clean up your chicken coop you have to give it some thinking.
How big? You need to plan ahead for the size of your coop. Each hen needs a minimum of 4 square feet inside and outside the coop. If you get Bantams figure about 3 square feet per hen since they are smaller. Overcrowded chickens tend to peck at each other which can start a host of problems. For cold weather you want the spacing to be adequate so the chickens can stay warm. Have a quarantine area. A separate area to keep new birds for a week or two allows you to keep your flock healthy. Its also a good area to separate a hen if she becomes ill until she recovers. You can also separate the occasional over-aggressive hen that is pestering the other birds. Make sure the coop is wind and water tight. Your chickens need protection from the elements to stay healthy. They like shade during the heat of the day but also need protection from cold drafts. Use closeable windows for ventilation or a line of screened vents built into the top of north and south facing walls.
Furthermore the coop should have sliding windows to prevent the chickens inside of it from roosting on the windows and the floor should be sloped in the direction of the door to ensure easy cleaning as well as to make it easier for rainwater to flow out of the coop. Ensuring that the coop is protected from environmental factors is rather critical when building a chicken coop as well. This means that the chickens inside of the coop need to be offered protection from bad weather predators and people looking to steal them. To accomplish all of these elements the coop needs to be placed in a high area and be well drained. It also must absolutely have exposure to the sun to ensure a warm and dry environment for the chickens and strong mesh wire needs to be placed around it to keep predators such as cats and foxes out.