Monday, February 16, 2009

the chicken coop

For weeks now I have been contemplating how I wanted our chicken coop to look and what size to make it. I wanted it to be big enough that if we are successful with eggs and we want more chickens we could easily fit more in, but small enough that it wouldn't cost a fortune to build or take up a lot of space in the yard. Then, there was finding a suitable coop to build for our climate and the plans. We went back and forth between a "house" type coop or an A-frame coop and do we put a floor in it, or do we use wire. We ended up designing our own coop based on a few pictures of coops I found on backyard chickens. I decided I wanted it to be up off the ground to help reduce the amount of rodents that might get in there and so that the chickens can hang out under the house in the summer for good shade. The front of the house will be open with chicken wire and the back side of the house will be covered and have doors to access the eggs and to clean it out. The front door will open down to provide a way for the chickens to get in and out, but close at night to keep the wildlife around here from eating our hens (hopefully). The space is 6ft by 8 ft by 4ft tall. Suitable for about 8 hens and up to 12 hens if they spend most of their time outside. We decided to also go with a wire floor so that their litter will fall out to the ground (at least some of it will) and to help in the summers to keep them cooler. I don't think our winters are going to be too bad on them, we'll just cover the front of the coop with a tarp when that time comes. India is excited because she will be able to get up in the coop with the chickens (it's big enough), but I don't think she will want to get in there when the hens are in there. We are planning on ordering 8 baby chicks once the house is built. From what I have read, we can plan on losing a few, but I wanted the space to be big enough in case we don't. We will be working on this project when we are unable to work on the garden due to the ground being too wet. One more step towards our goals for the year!

1 comment:

  1. So cool! We are going to live vicariously through you, since chickens aren't allowed inside city limits. We want to be sure and come visit often to watch the chicks grow up!