Chicken Coop / June 6, 2018 / Maryellen
A chicken coop is a kind of enclosure in which the chickens are kept. The interior of the housing have nest boxes for the chickens to lay eggs and also has perches for the birds to sleep on. The inside and outside of a chicken coops is usually covered with material such as straw or wood chips. These collect the chicken waste making it easier to clean. A chicken coop would usually have enough ventilation for air circulation helping airing out any odors that may occur. Before you get on to constructing a chickens coop sketch out the design of the kind of coop you need. It is not only the construction that you need to chalk out but also the colors that you are going to use on the roof and walls of your chicken coop. The coop should not act as a distraction to your neighborhood if it is clearly visible to your neighbors or be a defacement of the surroundings where you live. Therefore your chicken coop should have an aesthetic design and have no complaints from your neighbors.
Use appropriate building materials. Wood on the bottom of the coop that is in contact with the soil will eventually rot. Redwood and cedar are rot-resistant and excellent choices. Pine is cheaper and may need replacing in the future or require treatment. Be aware that preservatives put on wood might be poisonous to chickens. Use metal fiberglass or wood shingles for the roof. Perches. Chickens need to perch off the ground at night. You can be creative making perches from broom handles natural branches or 2x2s rounded and sanded (1x2 for bantams). Figure 6-10 inches of perching space per hen or 6-8 inches for bantams. Nesting boxes. Provide 1 nesting box for every 4-5 hens. They will often share a nest. Build the boxes where you can reach in through a hinged door for easy access to collect the eggs.
Predators. Raccoons dogs skunks owls and hawks-all love a good chicken dinner or a pre-dawn egg breakfast. Dig a trench 1 foot around the perimeter of the coop lay in chicken wire and cover with dirt to keep predators from digging under your coop. Make latches secure from nimble raccoon fingers. And protect chickens overhead with chicken wire away from the hawks and owls. Keep it clean. Plan your coop for easy to clean maintenance. Use the manure in your compost pile for valuable nutrients for your garden. Clean your chicken coop frequently to keep smells bugs and neighbor complaints to a minimum. Pre-plan how you are going to get inside the coop. If its hard to get into youll avoid cleaning it which will result in a buildup of manure. Use leaf litter pine shavings or chopped corn cobs for bedding. Your chicken coop design can elaborate and grand simple and plain or anything in between to complement your home and neighborhood. The main point to remember is that the coop needs to protect your flock keeping them dry secure and comfortable. Following the tips on choosing the right chicken coop will ensure that backyard chickens continue to be accepted in more cities bringing self-reliance back to the individual.