How to Build a Chicken Coop
Since sharing a few shots of our chicken coop on Instagram, I’ve gotten so many questions on the coop, and requests to share how we built it. It was such a fun family project, and it can be completely customized to accent the features of your own home. Our gals work hard to produce delicious eggs for us, we think they deserve some nice digs! I'll take you through the features we decided on, and why, as well as share the building process.
We started by admiring many different plans, and already built coops to get inspiration and determine what features we wanted for ours. We then took a mash up our favorite elements to custom build ours. Here are the things we wanted for our coop;
Size - The rule of thumb is 2-3 square feet per chicken, we have 12 Barred Plymouth Rock Chickens and needed a minimum of 24 square feet for our coop.
Wheels - We built ours on wheels so we can easily move the girls around the property, this way they always have some fresh grass, and we are not totally destroying one area. It’s also a great peace of mind as many predators can dig under a structure to get inside. Many folks who build on the ground will bury fencing to make it difficult for the critters to dig their way in. We used a utility trailer similar to this one as the base of our coop. The picture below shows the trailer right as we started the build.
Ventilation, Heat & Insulation - Vents should be used no matter your climate so the hot air has a place to escape and for circulation. Being in New England, we decided to add insulation to the walls and roof, as well as a heater to ours so the girls can stay in the coop year round.
Windows- This is what really makes a coop look like a little home. We used these simple shed windows that are surprisingly inexpensive.
Nesting Box - Nesting boxes give the girls a nice place to lay eggs, I also think they look cute on a coop. We put them on each side and, added flap doors for easy access to the eggs from the outside of the coop.
Interior Features - Chickens love to roost, we used simple wooden closet rods on each side of the interior. When we close the coop for the night, the girls are already up on the roost taking rest. Here is a shot before they were installed, it also shows the flooring, we did peel and stick vinyl planks like these for easy clean ups
Metal Roof - We choose a metal roof to accent our house, the big box home improvement stores have the sheets, keep in mind you'll also have to purchase special screws, and will need a metal shears.
Paint color - I used a Glidden color called Wedding White, we used Behr exterior paint.
We've now had the coop completed for close to a year, and it's been working out great! Thanks so much for following our chicken coop journey.