Though you can make a chicken house from a wide range of materials, wood is considered the best. Ready-made chicken coop kits are also available, but they can cost you a fortune, and therefore, making one on your own is a better bet.
Building Plans for Chicken Houses
The basic requirement of a chicken coop is to provide shelter to these birds, therefore, you need to work out the number of birds in order to determine the area of the shelter. Experts recommend roughly about 3 to 4 sq ft per bird, which adds up to 40 sq ft for 10 birds.
Besides this, these birds will also require common outdoor space. An area of 32 sq ft per bird is ideal, which makes it approximately 70 sq ft area for 10 birds. It's important that the coop plan you choose provides a good amount of free space to your birds, as keeping them in a cramped condition will only give you less number of eggs.
Being easily available and relatively inexpensive, a wooden box type coop is the first choice for many households. Considering you plan to house 10 birds, your chicken house can be 6 feet in height and 8 feet in width. As we said earlier, these birds should get ample space to move around indoors as well as outdoors.
Proper ventilation is another necessity, therefore, you will have to create some windows in the coop to facilitate the same. Access to water is another prominent aspect of a chicken coop. You can keep water either inside the coop or outside in the open space.
Nest Boxes and Perches
An ideal chicken nest box is roughly 15 inches in length and 15 inches in breadth. Fill these boxes with straw or wood chips to provide a soft padding, so that the eggs don't crack. It is good to have a single nest box per bird, less number of boxes won't make a big difference. A 2×4 slightly rounded board of wood is an ideal perch for the birds to roost.
Ensure that it's long enough to accommodate the number of birds you shelter. You can either fit it straight across the two walls of the coop, or fix it diagonally across two corners.
Spread some straw or wooden chips below the perch, and if possible all over the coop. That will make the task of cleaning simple, as you will just have to change the straw or wooden chips every day.
A clean and healthy chicken house will ensure healthy birds, and healthy birds will ensure you get good amount of eggs. Therefore, it is necessary to build a coop which keeps your birds healthy. It may seem a tough task, but is quite easy if done properly.