Though there are plenty of chicken coops sold on pet stores and online today, some poultry farmers would rather design and build their own coop. For them, it is not just a rewarding experience. It also gives them the chance to offer their flock something unique, but still satisfies their wants and fits the budget.
Unfortunately, some first-time poultry owners do not have sufficient experience when it comes to building chicken coops. Most of the time, their design comes with flaws, making it unhealthy and unsuitable for them and their chickens.
In order to avoid wasting time, money, and effort, as well as any unwanted spending, here is a list of the common design mistakes newbie chicken owners have encountered.
Lack of Planning
Before you even find a hammer and start building a chicken coop, you need to plan its every aspect. By the time you already have an attainable plan, you can easily proceed with the construction.
Part of the planning process is considering the functionality of your coop. As much as possible, the doors must be opened inwards and not outwards, otherwise, your birds might find their way out.
Since your chickens will be spending most of their time in the coop, make sure you give them fresh air. Therefore, putting some sliding windows makes a great idea, especially during the hot summer days.
Once everything is set, you can move on to the next phase and gather all the needed materials. To make things a bit simple, choose those materials that are easy to work with.
Cleanliness is another important thing when it comes to planning a chicken coop design. You can’t just leave your chickens running around inside a dirty coop.
The aim of building a chicken coop is to have something that can be used to protect your flock from outside elements like weather and predators. But then again, this doesn’t mean you have to lock them up in an enclosed space without proper ventilation.
Free-flowing air is necessary inside a chicken coop. Like humans, chickens can perform well when their basic needs are met. Thus, without oxygen, they might not be able to lay plenty of eggs.
Insulation is also very important when building a chicken coop. With this, chickens are protected against the ever-changing weather conditions.
Aside from that, good insulation provides a number of perks. Not only does it keep your birds dry, it also keeps the chicken enclosure at optimum level. This means, it could help your hens produce more eggs.
Insufficient Light Source
Many poultry farmers advise to build a chicken coop in the direction facing north. This way, the chooks can receive enough sunlight the entire day.
During the cold winter months, the days are shorter, which means there is not enough sunlight. But still, there is nothing to fret. Simply install a light source inside the coop. Well, this is not a difficult task. You can visit the nearest hardware and seek help from the persons-in-charge.
Putting up a decent light source is just as important as any other tips listed here. Imagine losing productivity because your birds haven’t gotten the right amount of light and warmth during those cold days. Frustrating, right?
Improper Placement of Water and Feeders
Every poultry farmer understands that the water bottle and the feeders should be placed somewhere that can be easily accessed by the birds.
But then again, considering the fact that chickens love to scratch and dig, it is just right to have these accessories placed somewhere elevated and safe. You don’t want to see their droppings and dirt mixed with their food and drinks when you clean their coops first thing in the morning.
Also, to prevent illnesses and diseases from spreading among your flock, be sure you replace their feed and water on a daily basis.
Inadequate Protection against Outside Elements
A chicken coop is more like a haven for chickens. The better its design, the more protected your chickens are against other elements like the weather and predators.
So how do you weatherproof your chicken enclosure? Basically, you just need to construct a chicken coop in an elevated area to prevent moisture and dampness. And then, make sure it is facing the direction of the sun. This way, it will quickly become dry after the rain.
Finally, check whether your chicken coop is not accessible to predators. If uncertain about this, do not just build it near the bushes. You do not want dogs, cats, and raccoons to dig underneath the coop and steal your chickens.
Yes, you can save time and effort when purchasing a ready-made coop. But there is nothing more rewarding than seeing your custom-made chicken coop standing in the corner of your yard and is being enjoyed by your flock. As long as you know what to do, then there will be no problems in the future.