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The chicken coop can be stained any color(s) you choose
The Movable Chicken Coop
If you have plans for a chicken coop in your backyard, there are many factors to consider before buying plans online for how to construct a chicken coop, and then rushing off to your local home center to purchase a bunch of materials.
President of Backyard Farmers, Al Benner has kept chickens for a number of years now and has tried various systems. Al has found that the best option by far combines a predator secure coop that is both a movable chicken coop and also offers some sort of outdoor access such as mesh chicken coop runs.
When many people consider how to construct a chicken coop, they first look for plans for a chicken coop online. This makes sense at first, but the realties of this strategy are that there are few, if any functional, yet good looking movable chicken coop plans available. But even with your own plans in hand you have only just begun. Several years ago, Al Benner spent several days building a smaller movable chicken coop from cedar and wire mesh. The plans for that coop were such that it only lasted a couple of years before it fell apart even though Al used all stainless hardware and took extra care in the quality of his work. The design was simply flawed - it was not rugged enough to handle moving around with any regularity.
Why is a movable chicken coop important? When you think about nutrition facts eggs come to mind. The egg is perhaps the world's most perfect food. But If you really want your eggs to be all they can be, then you want those hens to be foraging out on the lawn for grass, clover, seeds, and insects. This type of diet when combined with an organic grain laying mash will produce eggs with nutrition and flavor levels far superior to conventional eggs. The taste experience is so dramatic, that once you start producing your own eggs it will be very hard to go back to mass produced, store bought eggs.
Having your own egg producing hens provides:
- Excitement, responsibility and learning opportunities for children
- Nutrient-dense eggs - high in omega 3 and other essential amino acids
- Incredible flavor and freshness
- Safe reliable source of protein in your own backyard
Backyard Farmers has worked closely with their design-build woodworking shop in the Carolinas to come up with custom design plans for a chicken coop that not only looks great, but is incredibly robust in it's construction, and still only takes an hour for two people to assemble. The polycarbonate roof let's in natural light, and the eye-catching "mini-barn" design with access to lawn area for foraging (mesh fence sold separately). The movable mini-barn and fence is ideal for rotational chicken coop runs, and allows for complete security at night and free ranging by day. Best of all this is a movable chicken coop that two people can move about the yard, allowing for rotational "grazing" of the entire lawn area. Reduce your mowing and pump up your egg nutrients at the same time.
And the kids? Well if you have them or know any, be sure to get them involved - it's really amazing how they engage.
For your live chicks and other supplies we recommend www.MyPetChicken.com We have have ordered their birds with excellent results and their service and variety of accessories is quite good. We also recommend finding a local supplier of organic grain - a good brand locally grown in PA to search out is "Nature's Best" Grains are needed to balance your hen's diet and a layer mash is recommended once your birds start laying in 5-6 months. Oh, and the best part is a box of peeping day old chics will show up at your post office - it's really cool!
Our chicken coop has two built in nest boxes with easy access from the outside. The birds enter their mini chicken barn through an opening underneath in the center of the structure. When this trap door is shut each night no predators can get in. The roof is "smoked" polycarbonate and lets some light in for the cold winter months. Ventilation is designed in so the coop "breaths" in the evenings to cool down for the birds.
The coop will house between 4 - 6 laying hens (more with smaller breeds) NO ROOSTER is needed for hens to lay eggs (only if you desire fertile eggs that can be incubated and hatched) This is important, as may local regulations won't allow roosters and/or have limits on the number of laying hens you may have on site. We strongly recommend you check your local zoning laws prior to ordering our coop or chicks.
We strongly recommend adding our movable non-electric daytime containment fence (black for minimal visual impact) so your birds can forage for grass, bugs and seeds on your lawn - becoming defacto lawn mowers.
STAINING: This is optional, but recommended. A water-based stained is preferred. Most people stain to complement their home. Another option is to go with a clear stain if you like the natural wood look.
Dimensions: 51” L x 41” W
Shipping Weight: 50 lbs
Material: Western Red Cedar & Douglas Fir with “smoked” color Polycarbonate Roofing
If you have never collected your own homegrown organic chicken eggs, you are in for a very rewarding experience and a continual treat. Your family, friends, and neighbors will delight in and want to be a part of your venture in animal husbandry, made easy by our well-designed chicken coop.
Nothing tastes better than organic eggs laid by chickens raised in healthy conditions. The eggs have a distinct range of earthy colors with yolks of a rich yellow. They are more nutritious and their taste is unbeatable.
Our chicken coop is designed with a traditional farm style barn look. Its compact size will not take up too much space in your backyard, while still providing a cozy home for several laying hens.
The chicken coop is designed with two features that allow for easy access and maintenance. The roof is made of a lightweight polycarbonate material that can be easily removed for access. There is also a hinged access door along the long side of the chicken coop for collecting the eggs and cleaning the coop.
How do I know if I am allowed to raise chickens in my area?
Check with your local ordinances at the City Hall to find out any restrictions on raising chickens in your area. Certain areas might limit the amount and type of chickens you can raise in your backyard.
How easy are chickens to care for?
Chickens require common necessities such as food, shelter, and water. You will need to provide food and water once or twice daily. Addition care includes collecting eggs, cleaning the chicken coop, and watching out for signs of sickness.
How often do hens lay eggs? Do I need a rooster?
A laying hen will supply eggs every 1-2 days. Laying hens supply the most eggs in the first 1 to 4 years of their lives. Roosters are male chickens that do not lay eggs and they are not needed to produce eggs. Fertilized eggs are edible if refrigerated immediately after collection.
Do I have to worry about animals eating my chickens?
As long as your chickens are kept in their coop at night and you install our chicken fencing securely around the perimeter of their coop, there is minimal risk of animals eating your chickens. Take measures to prevent household pets from interacting with chickens. Predators like foxes, opossums, and hawks will always pose a threat, but a properly secured coop and fencing should do the trick.
Will my chickens reproduce?
Only if you have a rooster. We don’t recommend them in suburban or urban locations
How many chickens can I raise in this chicken coop?
up to 4-6 depending on breed size
How often will my coop need to be cleaned?
We recommend 1x per week in the warmer months and 1x per month or up to every 3 months in the winter time - during freezing months all that is really needed is additional straw added every few days. The straw and droppings will heat up underneath and begin to break down into compost.