Chicken Coop Plans – Elements for Success

There is much more to selecting a chicken coop plan than just the aesthetics of the designs. It is essential that the design fits into that of your backyard, but there are other factors that you must take into account while choosing plans.

You chickens need a particular amount of space to be happy and healthy. Each chicken should have at least four square feet of space all to itself, as overcrowding often results in feather picking as their quality of life is reduced, and is even known to cause cannibalism.

Light is another important factor in chicken coop plans. Light is needed to stimulate the laying of eggs in the coop, and is important if you want your chickens to lay eggs throughout the year. Electric or tungsten bulbs should be placed inside the coop to provide light. These even serve as a source of warmth on colder days.

Chickens possess a natural instinct to perch, hence it is necessary that you give perches so that they don’t perch on the feeders or nesting boxes as this leads to these areas being covered in chicken droppings, which you don’t want. Eight inches per chicken is enough.

As strange as it may sound, chickens sweat. Chickens can live in cold conditions but not in moist ones so it is essential to their health that you add vents to your design. They can be in the shape of small windows or vents in the walls, but it shouldnt be windy inside the coop. you can make this possible by ensuring that the side which has the vents doesn’t face the wind. By doing this, you will allow fresh air and oxygen to enter the chicken coop while letting the moisture and stale air escape.

You will also need nesting boxes if you want your chickens to lay eggs. Six chickens can share one nest, but these must be dark. Make sure that they are four inches deep and fill them with wood shavings or straw.

Your chickens must be safe from predators such as hawks, raccoons, coyotes, foxes and rats. Ensure that the structure is strong and that it is impossible to be knocked over by a person. Add wire fencing around the coop, up to one foot deep underground so that rodents and foxes cannot dig through.

Remember that these predators can be quite cunning so be certain that your coop is safe from them.
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