Backyard chickens · Chicken Coop

Chicken Coop Plans – Planning The Cages of Your Hens

Building a home for your livestock can either be a hassle or interesting depending on your outlook of it. If you are an outdoors guy, you would probably enjoy building it. If you are not a farm guy, you may need a little introduction to the ways of poultry farming to get you started. If your heart is in the right place though, you will find that poultry farming is quite easy and a bit relaxing compared to what you may consider a comfy office job. True, it will require more labor work but it’s a kind of labor that you can be enjoyable if you like farming.

Of course, you can go the easy route and just buy an already-made chicken pen. For many poultry farmers however, building their own chicken coop is the much preferred choice because it would give them more customizability.

The thrill of building a home for your chickens

For newbies in the poultry farming business, building a home can be an exciting stage in your business. Because of the excitement, many owners have the tendency to build the most elaborate and expensive coop there is. While there’s nothing wrong in getting the most expensive chicken coop plan, it can be downright wasteful. If you can spend less on chicken coop without sacrificing quality of life for your chicken, wouldn’t that be great? As a poultry farmer, you should be practical and save money when you can without sacrificing quality of life for your chickens.

Avoiding spending too much on your chicken coop does not mean you won’t be able to provide comfortable living situation for your chicken. The reason you avoid spending too much is because you want all parts of the chicken coop to be functional. There is a difference between being a cheapskate and being practical. You can save a lot of money if you can identify which features you need and don’t.

What you need to know as a beginner

Before you start any chicken coop plans, here are some things you need to understand.

Types of housing

Depending on your needs, you can either build a confined housing or an open housing. Confined housing means that the coop and the run are built together. Open housing is basically raising your chicken free range. You can combine both if you like – it’s called a tractor housing. Tractor housing is basically a coop with wheels. It allows you to move the tractor around while keeping a cage over your chickens. If you live in a farm, this is the ideal setup because you can fertilize the land by moving the tractor every once in a while. Chickens will leave their manure on the ground which turns into fertilizers.

Parts of chicken coops or tractors

A simple chicken coop is made up of four walls, a functioning roof and a run. Inside the chicken coop is the nest and the roost. You will also need to include a good ventilation system to make sure your chickens receive healthy air.

Space requirements of a chicken coop

Generally, your chickens will need plenty of personal spaces. If you get them too crowded, they may start fighting each other. Obviously, that would be bad for their health. This is one of the many reasons why you should not skimp out on space for your chickens. Give them ample enough roof to feel like they own a territory. The rule of thumb is to have at least 8 square feet for each chicken. You can have less space than this if your chickens are still young and growing. However, a fully grown chicken will require every inch of that 8 square feet so be mindful of that.

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