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Build a Backyard Chicken Coop

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Build a Backyard Chicken Coop

by Lucy Stone, Networx

Building a backyard chicken coop is one of the best investments you’ll ever make. Not only will it allow you to produce fresh, self-sustaining organic eggs everyday, but the chickens will eat your food scraps as well. It’s a great way to incorporate permaculture design into your landscape.

Chicken manure is also one of the best fertilizers in your garden. Use it to grow bigger vegetables, and lusher, brighter, more vibrant plants.

First, start the process by making sure your town allows chickens. If you live in a rural area or county, raising chickens in your backyard probably won’t be a problem. Even cities like New York City, Chicago, Memphis, Portland, and Seattle allow laying hens, so don’t be afraid to ask.

Making a Nest

The next step is designating space for the chickens and building a chicken coop. The general rule of thumb is allotting about 2-3 square feet per chicken inside the henhouse and 4-5 sq/ft per chicken in an outside run.

Once the area is marked off, it’s time to build the actual chicken coop. These structures come in all shapes and sizes with an abundance of building plans available online, as well as many pre-fabricated options.

However, you can also get started with a simple doghouse by raising it up on cinder blocks, adding a roost about a foot off the floor and layer the bottom with straw or pine shavings for nests. You’ll also want a way to access the eggs, so consider hinging part of the roof, or building a window.

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Read more: Lawns & Gardens, Less Common Pets, Nature, Nature & Wildlife, Pets, , , , ,

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12:09AM PDT on Jul 9, 2012

Thanks for posting.

7:55PM PDT on May 2, 2012

Good lookin' coop.

11:40PM PDT on Apr 24, 2012

I am glad to know the lifespan of a chicken, and I didn't know they could fly at all.

9:53AM PDT on Apr 11, 2012


12:57PM PDT on Mar 17, 2012

Great chicken coop and run design.
I have had laying chickens for years. Nothing like going out to collect your breakfast eggs every day. Once you taste them, you will never want a store bought egg again. Mine are completely free range and come back to the coop at night to sleep. I have to go searching for their eggs, but that's part of the fun of having chickens.

12:11PM PDT on Mar 17, 2012

Yes Charlee M you are right to teach your children how to treat animals, pity more people don't do that. I have 6 X battery hens and they are beautifull all girls so no babies. They love cooked potatoe peelings and their droppings make wonderfull manure.

5:57PM PDT on Mar 16, 2012

I wish you had put in a video, and diagrams etc.

8:14AM PST on Dec 4, 2011

Cute coop!

8:58AM PDT on Apr 3, 2011

Herman Cain for US president!

5:26AM PST on Mar 2, 2011

There are lots of ways to build a chicken coop.Lots of designs also.Your design is great.

Daniel Dan

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
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