If you have the desire and minimum experience in keeping chickens and you are thinking about how to build a chicken coop with your own hands, then we will tell you how to build a winter chicken coop for 10 chickens.
The small size and thermal insulation of the chicken coop will allow the birds to warm the room with the heat of their bodies. At the same time, the construction of such a chicken coop is fully within the power of every householder! This project does not take too much time and does not require the availability of expensive tools.
Chicken coop on 10 chickens with their own hands.
When designing and building a chicken coop, it is important to keep many components in mind. After all, a chicken coop is at the same time both comfortable housing for birds and an outbuilding designed to make it easier for people to care for animals and increase their productivity. Therefore, before doing the chicken coop with your own hands, let's see what structural elements and features should be inherent in every good chicken coop.
1. We rise above the ground
Dampness and moisture - the main enemies of any chicken coop. In the damp room, the birds start to hurt, so the chicken coop is always raised above the ground. Some designs provide a very high lift - up to a meter, and sometimes higher. If in your area, like us, there is no excessive humidity, then 25-40cm should be quite enough.
2. Placement of the hen house
Speaking of terrain! Choosing the right place for a chicken coop is 50% success. Here are some tips that will help:
- choose a place in the shade (for example, under the canopy of a large tree), otherwise in the summer months the coop will overheat, which can lead to diseases
- the place for the chicken coop should be as dry as possible - do not put the chicken coop where water is collected after each rain
- try to choose a secluded place not too affected by the wind (this way the fence protects the chicken coop from the wind and the trees from the abundance of direct sunlight)
- if you think that you have found the perfect place, do not hurry - watch for a while carefully: you may notice hidden problems.
3. Entrances-exits for chickens and people
Each chicken coop should have access for birds, as well as access for cleaning the room. In our chicken coop, a passage for chickens is made behind the back wall, and two doors provide the possibility of cleaning the chicken coop.
4. Nests and roost
In the nests, the chickens will carry eggs, and you will take these eggs from the nests, therefore, the nests should be comfortable for you and for the chickens. It is believed that the ideal size of the nest is 30x30 cm in length and width, and 30-40 cm. in height. In this case, the entrance to the nest is recommended to do already.
Outside the nests should be easily accessible.
The lid opens, so no need to climb inside the chicken coop to collect eggs.
The lid must be inclined so that water flows freely from it and does not fall into the nests.
The total length of the perch is calculated from 25 cm per hen. Since we are counting our chicken coop on ten chickens, there will be enough bars for the entire length of the chicken coop (almost 2.5 m).
5. Lighting and ventilation of the hen house
Light chickens simply needed. Reducing daylight hours is one of the main reasons why chickens stop laying eggs in the winter, and experienced owners know that this problem is solved by turning on a light bulb. Therefore, the windows in the hen house - to be!
It is better to make the windows from at least three sides so that the light penetrates into the chicken coop throughout the day. Pay attention to the hinged ventilation window on the back wall. In wet weather, it can be opened for additional ventilation. The windows above the sockets on the front wall also open. Ventilation is very important, but remember: whatever tricks you use to ventilate a winter chicken coop, be sure to consider adjusting the air flow until it is completely shut off - this will be useful to you in the winter when ventilation drains the precious heat.
Drawing chicken coop.
Below we provide drawings of our chicken coop. For construction, we used timber and boards of coniferous wood, as well as 15mm plywood. For the floor and the substrate under the roof is quite possible to use OSB. When specifying the step between the lags and rafters, the distances are indicated between the centers of the bars.
How to insulate a chicken coop with your own hands
So, we built a chicken coop. Now we have to perform its weatherization. As a heater, you can use different materials. Perfectly suited for this mineral wool.
And also polyfoam and expanded polystyrene.
At worst, you can sheathe the walls with cardboard and old blankets.
Insulation is inserted between the bars, and then sewn up with plywood. Otherwise, the birds can peck at it (especially they like foam plastic).
In winter, the insulation should also close the windows. It is important to provide artificial lighting.
In case of severe frosts, you can provide for the presence of infrared lamps. At the same time, their work can be controlled by a timer or even a thermal relay - this eliminates unnecessary trouble, eliminates the human factor (forgot to turn on / off) and saves money.
Coop with your own hands. Summer corral.
In the warm season, chickens need more space, and they will gladly spend most of their time on the street. Therefore, making a chicken coop with your own hands, it is necessary to make an open summer pen for hens. The area of the pen is calculated by the formula 1m.kv. for every chicken.
Pay attention to the grid at the bottom of the chicken coop - it protects from predators. It should be buried in the ground at 20-30cm, as some predators are quite capable of making a dig. And if there are large birds of prey in your area, the pen needs to be protected from above.
It is also very important that at least part of the pen should be in the shade - the chickens should be able to hide from the scorching sun. If there is no natural shade, then build a small canopy.
In order for birds to freely enter and leave the hen house raised above the ground, a simple ladder is usually constructed for them.
Coop do it yourself from scrap materials.
The old farmer turned the German kitchen cabinet into a small chicken coop.
Such a chicken coop made from scrap materials is fully compliant with EU approved chicken specifications and provides enough space for three chickens to collect and lay eggs.
In the ward compartments there are places for storing sand, straw, fodder and for storing eggs.
Tiny curtains for chickens are also made, as they prefer to lay eggs in the dark.
Chickens need space for walking, so the chicken coop is placed in the backyard to give them enough room for walking.
A chicken coop from scrap materials shows how modern methods of keeping chickens can be implemented using non-standard means.
As you can see, in the construction of such a seemingly simple thing as a chicken coop, there are many nuances and important points, not knowing which can negate all efforts.
But despite this, anyone can build a good chicken coop with their own hands.
The main thing is to arm yourself with the right knowledge and think over all aspects of the design in advance. You can build a chicken coop according to our drawings, or, taking their basis, modify its device to fit your needs.
Please share your experiences and tips on this topic in the comments!