Raising chickens in an urban area has become an enjoyable hobby for many folks. People are often surprised just how much personality a chicken has! To keep chickens in your backyard, you will need to provide the chickens with a suitable home – a chicken coop. A coop can be built using a plan; either a purchased one or one that you draw up yourself. Another attractive alternative is to purchase a chicken coop kit.
What’s Included with a Coop Kit?
Simply put, a chicken coop kit contains everything you need in one box. You just have to assemble it. This method of coop building is great for everyone, but especially for a person that doesn’t particularly want to measure and cut materials. With most chicken coop kits, the only tools needed are a screwdriver and wrench.
How Much Space Do Chickens Need?
To estimate the size of coop you need, you need to consider that one adult chicken requires about 4 square feet of room. For instance, a coop on the fairly large size for backyard chickens would measure about eight feet by six feet, and that could accommodate right around 10 to 12 adult chickens.
When shopping for a chicken coop kit, make sure it contains all the materials you will need, or be prepared to purchase extra items that are not included. For instance, there are nice coop kits for sale that look good in the photo, but once you read the fine print you may discover the kit doesn’t include shingles. That can add quite a lot of money on to your coop price!
Also, bear in mind that most coop kits do include materials for a run, but some do not. Also, a necessary feature you want to make sure is included is a nesting box. The nesting box is where the chickens go to lay their eggs, and typically the box will include a human access door to gather eggs.
Protect Your Chickens from Predators
Be sure to find a coop kit that is constructed of durable wood, and includes strong chicken wire. The coop must be able to withstand the elements; rain, snow, and sun. In addition, a coop must provide good protection from predators such as dogs, foxes or raccoons.
Ventilation is another factor that must be considered when looking at coop kits. Most kits are designed well in the ventilation department, but on some cheaper kits, this most important feature may have been skimped on a bit. Good ventilation reduces the buildup of ammonia in your coop, and keeps your chickens happy and healthy. Part of good ventilation is the inclusion of windows. Windows let fresh air in, and at the same time light the coop during the day, although they can also allow in the cold in the winter.
Keeping chickens is a very satisfying hobby. Building them a proper coop is a large part of raising happy, healthy and productive birds. A chicken coop kit is an easy and fairly inexpensive way to get a coop up and operational quickly.
If you can’t find a suitable chicken coop kit then we recommend the following chicken coop plans. You can either build the coop yourself or arrange for someone to build it for you.