Three crucial things to consider before building a DIY chicken coop
DIY chicken coops are a growing trend among Australian homeowners, as more and more people look to keep their own chickens and enjoy the benefits of fresh eggs. Chickens are remarkably intelligent and curious birds that people often find delightful to keep on their property.
If you want to start keeping chickens but don’t know how to build a chicken coop on your own, the Park Road Timber and Hardware team is here to help. Planning out your chicken coop is just as important as building it, which is why we have highlighted the three essential things to consider before you get started.
One of the most crucial things to consider when building a DIY chicken coop is the best location to provide good hygiene and protection for your chickens. It is best to either elevate your chicken coop or build on higher ground in order to avoid flooding, mud and water buildup.
When building a chicken coop, it is a good idea to choose a location close to your home or in a spot that people frequent to deter predators such as foxes. These predators can also hide near plants and foliage, so you may want to clear the area around your coop.
It is important to choose a location that has both shade and sunlight exposure depending on the time of day, as sunlight encourages chickens to lay eggs. You can use natural shade such as trees or something artificial, whether that be shade created by a building, fence or a tarp.
How much room do chickens need in a coop? This is a common question asked by DIY coop builders, and the answer largely depends on whether your chickens will have an outdoor run to roam beyond the coop. If this is the case, you should plan for your coop to have around 3 square feet per chicken, with an additional 4 square feet per chicken for the outdoor run space. Should there be no outdoor space, each chicken will need 8–10 square feet inside the coop. For happy, healthy chickens, outdoor space is highly recommended.
The last thing you want for your chickens is overcrowding, which can lead to numerous issues. Being in a cramped space will usually result in chickens fighting more, causing injuries and having some birds that don’t get enough food or water due to being lower in the pecking order. A crowded coop can also mean that bacteria and droppings build up faster, increasing the risk of your chickens getting sick.
There are many different options available when it comes to what materials you will use for your chicken coop. Two of the most effective coop types are metal and concrete, although the materials can be more costly. These coops are easy to clean, sturdy and offer excellent predator protection.
Materials for hardwood, softwood and plywood coops are generally easier to get and are more affordable, but lice and mites have more cracks and joints to hide in, and it may be more difficult to clean the coop out.
Whether you’re looking to build a coop that will stand the test of time, or something a bit more simple, Park Road Timber and Hardware has all the supplies you need as an official store of Mitre 10. Chicken coop builders can trust our team to supply everything you need to create the perfect DIY home for chickens.
Park Road Timber & Hardware has everything you need
If you are ready to get started on your DIY chicken coop, the team at Park Road Timber and Hardware is here to help. We stock a huge range of items from Dewalt power tools to hardwood. Check out our catalogue or visit us in-store for everything you need, whether it’s hardware, timber or tools.
With click and collect available, it has never been easier to get exactly what you need for your next DIY project. Visit us at our Cheltenham store for all your timber and hardware needs or give our friendly team a call on (03) 9909 5397 for our expert advice. Alternatively, you can book a free consultation with us online.