Figuring out how to build a chicken coop would definitely make housing your chickens an easy venture. While a single chicken or two may not necessitate the need to set up such, you would need to learn how to build a coop when your chickens finally reach a sizable number that needs to be housed safely. This will not only be to keep your chickens safely nestled within a home, but will also provide a great number of advantages in keeping and raising them efficiently.
How To Build A Chicken Coop Step #1: Planning Your Chicken Coop
Have you ever noticed that at night, chickens often end up perched on someplace high? Evolution might have actually developed a sense in them to do so, most probably because it helps them avoid predators that prowl the ground at night. So the first step in building your coop would be to choose a spot that is elevated or situated high above ground level.
Not only will it be beneficial in keeping them safe, but it will also be for their comfort. This knowledge on constructing a coop will also keep them safe from puddles that usually accumulate during a rain storm, keeping them warm and comfortable.
Step #2: Determine The Purpose Of Your Chicken Coop
An essential factor to pay attention to would be to figure out what your purposes for your chicken would be. If you plan to house laying hens that will be raised for meat, you would need to have at least 1 1/2 up to 2 square feet per chicken on the inside of the coop. You should also keep in mind that you need to have nest boxes for these hens, which should be of appropriate size.
For perching, rules on how to build a chicken coop would suggest that there should be 6 to 10 inches of perch space for every chicken, which would be most comfortable and would allow them space that won’t be intrusive for sleeping or stretching. You should save plenty of yard area outside for them to go about as well, which must provide 8 to 10 square feet per bird.
Step #3: Create A Floor Plan For You Chicken Coop
Once you have determined your purposes for your chickens, you’ll need to go about with working on the floor plan of your chicken coop. Rules on how to build a chicken coop would give you an idea to build a door and an interior for your chicken coop that will have enough space to let you go about in. This is essential especially during times when you would need to collect eggs or clean the area.
You should figure out how to provide ventilation for the chicken coop as well. Some coop construction advice would suggest having windows facing the south, which will help get the breeze in during summer and get the sun’s warm rays through for winter. Check out the materials that might be available, as most scrap lumber and plywood can be used for the task. A hardware store can supply your necessities as well.
Step #4: Gathering Materials For Building Your Chicken Coop
Once you have gathered the needed materials, instructions on how to build chicken coops will tell you to face the front and the yard area towards the south. You should also build sloping roofs, which will let you have cozy nesting spaces above. This will also keep the rain and snow sliding off during such seasons.
Planning the installation of windows is also required for a successful coop. One can choose to have screened windows, which can provide ventilation. Other windows such as vented ones can work as well, and should be placed high up on walls to keep chickens from escaping and prevent predators from getting in. Glass windows will work well too if you want to let light in while keeping your chickens safe inside.
Other suggestions on how to build a chicken coop would also include installation of nest boxes and perches along the walls of the chicken coop. These perches should be three feet above the ground and the boxes filled with straw.
Step #5: Seek Professional Advice
Someone who has no idea on how to build their chicken coop should know that this is a task that can be done by anyone. Those who need step by step chicken coop plans must read Bill Keene’s Building a Chicken Coop AND Chicken DIY Guide which will offer expert advice on building your first chicken coop.
For those who need more advice on building their coop, these books are highly recommended. Both of these books will explain you everything you need to know about how to build a chicken coop, and give you ideas on how to properly secure the yard, like digging fences 12 feet deep to keep diggers off and installing netting to keep owls and hawks out.