If youa€™re wanting to start building a chicken coop and keeping your own chickens, youa€™ll first need to know what makes up a chicken coop.
When people refer to the a€?runa€™ they are talking about an open area where the chickens can run about and stretch their legs!
If youa€™ve never made a DIY chicken coop then I would highly, highly suggest that you buy some good chicken coop plans. Once youa€™ve got those plans youa€™ll want to look through them and pick out a coop design or idea that you like, that fits well with the space you have and is within your skill level. No matter which design you choose, youa€™ll need some form of protection to keep predators away from your birds. Actually getting down and building your project is one of the most exciting and frustrating times. The build itself isna€™t always easy, so wea€™ve added some extra information and tips down below. While there are as many chicken coop designs as your brain can imagine, only a handful are regularly used. Thata€™s sort of a name Ia€™ve come up with myself because there arena€™t many clear cut names for different styles of coop.
Lastly, we have the shed which is mainly used by people who let their chickens roam freely during the day. One of the best things you can do is to take your time, especially if this is your first time building something of this size. Even if you are using the plans I suggested above, I think ita€™s a good idea to plan everything out with regards to materials. I would personally advise that you try and make the coop as lightweight and portable as possible. Weekend Knowledge Dump- March 25, 2016 4 Survival Recipes That Kept The Pioneers Alive On Their Westward Trek Mom, Could You Please Pass the Potassium Iodide?
There are lots of different designs you can choose from but the standard coop will have; a run, some nesting area, a perch, insulation, food and some protection.

Generally, this area is open to the environment except for some sort of protection such as chicken wire.
So most coops will have a branch or beam across the housing, where the birds can rest and perch. Ita€™s advised that you keep the food and water in the run rather than in the house because it makes it easier to replace and also allows you to monitor them more easily.
These plans are extremely detailed, with simple and understandable diagrams that will allow you to quickly assemble your coop without any issues. The most common form of protection is chicken wire, which is just a thin metal mesh that you can place across the outside of your coop to keep attackers away.
Youa€™ll want to ensure that you have some air flow through the coop otherwise the smell will become very strong.
This is normally solved by having a removable side the coop, although different plans may have different ways to solve the problem.
Things like wood, nails and screws can be bought from a hardware store like Home Depot or Sears. If you have a good set of blueprints then youa€™ve got a significant advantage, if not you should be prepared to spend much longer (and more money!) on the actual build. Each of the popular designs has their own advantages and disadvantages, so ita€™s up to you to decide which design fits your needs and capabilities best. Ita€™s simply a triangular prism, generally with a raised housing section, causing the a€?Aa€™ shape. The shed is simply a large box shape with a small ramp up, keeping the building raised from the wet ground. Most people will make a mistake at some point, so recognize that ita€™s common and try not to let it overwhelm you.
You may consider laying the wood and parts out on your lawn in their correct positions to picture the final design. This is because this wood has been treated with chemicals, which as you can imagine is not good for your chickens who will peck at the wood.

Ita€™s common to make the nest out of straw or other soft materials like cotton, in a bowl shape that will collect the eggs.
The level of insulation required will obviously differ from state to state so use some common sense when it comes to building the coop.
One example is to hang a plastic dish from the coop roof with a chain, which allows them to drink. The last thing you want is to get halfway through the build only to get stuck because the plans arena€™t detailed enough. This is because youa€™re likely to make more mistakes which are costly in terms of time and money.
This is probably the easiest design to build, so if you are worried about the building process and arena€™t the best carpenter then you might consider choosing the A-Frame.
The reason I refer to this as a house is because it has everything that the birds need within one enclosed area, and the housing areas are often decorated to look like real homes. Sometimes, taking an extra minute here or there can make all the difference to the final product.
You should make sure that all the wood is the right length and you have the correct screws and drill bits before starting. Some people even install wheels on one side of the coop so that they can simply lift it and roll it to a new location. People often use straw as a bedding material because it is absorbent, cheap and provides warmth. The main disadvantage to this style is that it isna€™t very space efficient, meaning that it wona€™t be home to very many chickens a€“ often only 2 or 3. Another alternative that is used is wood chips, although some people believe that this can cause damage to chickens feet.

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