Positioning Your Coop: Selecting the perfect spot on your yard to place your chicken coop will be important so that you’re happy with it for years to come, consider it from a variety of angles because many things are going to be impacted by where the coop is located
Here are just a few to consider.
Protection: First up you should think about predatory animals. If you didn’t read the last newsletter this was talked about to a much greater depth, so you may want to go back and read that now. Basically, the general idea is that the closer you can place your chicken coop to where you are going to be, the easier it will be to keep an eye on the chicken coop.
Also, if you happen to have a very large farm, you may only have certain areas of your yard that encounter animals, so choosing to place the coop as far away from that would be a very smart move.
Climate: Another factor that needs to be considered with the location of your chicken coop is the climate. Do you live in a very hot area? Or do you get a lot of rain regularly? If you get rain frequently, you may consider building the chicken coop in an area that is more protected by nearby trees, helping to reduce the amount of direct rain that hits the house.
Also, if you do get a lot of rain, you’ll want to build the coop away from an area of the yard where water typically runs to since if that happens, you’re likely to have a flood chicken coop on your hands.
Finally, if it gets very windy where you live, this is another reason to consider building the chicken coop in an area that’s near a decent amount of trees or other buildings to help shield the chickens from the wind. While you do definitely want good ventilation in the coop, you don’t want gusts of wind on a regular basis.
Sunlight: Finally, since your chickens are going to really require a good amount of natural sunlight in order to lay eggs effectively, try and build your chicken coop in an area that’s well lit and faces the sun. You want to always maximize this otherwise you’ll have to run electrical light to the chicken coop which can become a very costly venture over time.
So, keep these factors in mind as you go about deciding exactly where to place your chicken coop. If you do, you’ll be happy with it for the long term and you’ll definitely notice a big difference in the amount of fresh eggs you get daily.
Chicken Coop Accessories Ideas: There are a number of different accessories you can add to your chicken coop, and the decision of which you will add will be a personal preference. It’s important to get the basics covered however since they will be vital for your coop’s health.
Here are some of the main ones to consider.
Feeders: Choosing a good chicken feeder to include in your chicken coop will give them easy access to food to ensure they’re eating properly. This will be important for their overall growth and egg development, so make sure you’re building a good quality feeder.
Also look at the specific height you place the feeder in the house as this too can influence how comfortably their able to get at their food.
Nesting Boxes: You can get chicken nesting boxes in a variety of different shapes and sizes and can build them out of many common materials you have around the house such as a large plastic pale or an old wooden box. You should use one nesting box for 2 - 4 hens that you have and they should be relatively dark inside.
It’s also smart to build the top of the nesting box on a bit of an angle to discourage them from sleeping on top of the box.
Waterier: Having a good chicken waterier inside the coop will help ensure your chickens have a good supply of fresh water on a regular basis. With this again you can use many items you have right around the house to help cut down on the cost and make it more convenient for you.
If you are building a larger sized chicken coop it will be a good idea to include two waterier if you can to give your chickens a bit more access to fresh water when they need it.
Perches: Finally, the last thing you should think about is adding a good chicken perch to your coop. This will help ensure your chickens are getting a comfortable night’s sleep so they are better able to lay their eggs.
Like the waterier, be sure you’re providing enough perches for the chickens so they don’t have to fight for room. Also make sure your perches are wide enough to comfortably fit the chickens since as they grow they will likely need a bit more room to sleep comfortably.
So, keep these accessories in mind. You always want to make sure you’re building your chicken house with enough room to add these accessories while still allowing for plenty of space to move around. Having an overcrowded chicken coop will severely limit the total eggs you produce so this isn’t something to take lightly.
Maintaining Your Coop: Here are some of the main things you should know about
Pay Attention to the Door: Since the door is one area of the coop that’s going to be constantly moving as you go in and out to feed the chickens, it’s something you’ll want to watch and maintain regularly. If the latch is becoming loose, be sure you fix this immediately so your chickens don’t find a way to escape out.
If you find that you’re regularly having issues with it, you may want to consider either replacing the door altogether or else just finding a more secure latch and being sure it’s bolted to the door properly.
Each farmer will have their own preference when it comes to the opening door so figure out what works best for you. Click here learn more details on How to build a Chicken Coop.
Regularly check your Fence: Another aspect of the chicken house that should be monitored at least once a month is the structure of the fence. If you do have predators that come around frequently, they may attempt to get in which can impact the stableness of your fence, calling for some rebuilding if necessary.
Some fences are also quite prone to falling over after so much time, so walk around and test various areas of the fence to see how well it’s standing up still.
Check the Feeders: Keeping a close eye on the feeders located in the chicken coop is also vital since these will be used on a daily basis. In some cases if the feeders are very beat up it could be a signal you should consider installing another one into the coop as the chickens may be constantly fighting over food and picking at the feeder.
You also want to watch how your chickens are responding to the feeder height. In some cases you’ll get chickens who prefer a feeder to be slightly lower or higher than how you placed it, so adjusting this as time goes in is important for the overall comport of your chickens.
Usually it just needs to be adjusting an inch or two, but this makes a huge difference in how easily they can access their food.
So, don’t neglect the maintenance of your chicken coop. If you decided to go with a mobile chicken coop you’ll find that maintenance does tend to be quite a bit easier since you can just move the coop to wherever you are. If you didn’t, than that just means regularly planning maintenance into your weekly or monthly schedule as you see fit.
Click here learn more details on How to build a Chicken Coop.