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Bantam Chicken

Bantam Chicken

Chicken Coop Designs - Measurements and Numbers

If you are a backyard chicken farmer, you may be thinking of designing your own chicken coop after looking at all the different chicken coop designs on the Internet. This can be easy enough to do, but there are a few basic measurements to keep in mind when coming up with your own chicken coop designs.

What you should think about and consider is that every chicken needs at least 4 square feet each to be comfortable all the time. Doors on the chicken coop only need to be about a 1 foot high and 1 foot wide. You can make them a little larger, but make sure they close tightly and latch. A raccoon is as smart as a toddler, so keep that in mind, since they love stealing eggs.

Roosts can be made from tree branches or old broom handles and step ladders, as long as they are about an inch and a half thick. Most chicken coop designs allow 18 inches between roosts, walls and other surfaces such as the roof or floor. You should allow ten inches per chicken at a minimum- just make sure you can easily clean underneath them. Bantam chickens like a smaller diameter roost for comfort, so an inch is more appropriate.

When it comes to nesting boxes, most chicken coop designs allow for 1 foot wide, 1 foot deep and at least a 1 foot opening in the front. Putting at base on the front of 4 inches or taller will help keep the nesting material in. A deeply sloped roof is also the most desirable. You can estimate that you will need a nesting box for every 4 or 5 chickens, on the average.

Most chicken coop designs plan for an outdoor run so the chickens can be free to go in and out of the house. Chickens like to dig in the dirt, so loose soil 4 to 6 inches deep will allow them to roll in the dust, dig for grubs and enjoy the outdoors. The fencing needs to be 4 foot high to keep the chickens in and it needs to be roofed with fencing or a solid surface since hawks, owls and eagles tend to attack chickens from above very easily.

When you are building protective fencing or the chicken run, most chicken coop designs recommend that you bury the fencing 6 inches deep and the outside of the perimeter should have the meshing bent upward in a 90 degree U-shape to discourage predators like dogs, rodents, raccoons and snakes that can come under the fence and steal eggs or chickens.

Chicken coop designs that allow for above ground chicken coops, such as mobile and stilted chicken coops that are in areas prone to flooding, recommend that above ground chicken coops have an inner floor that is 12 inches off the ground to prevent flooding and allow for ventilation, and keep the chickens off of the cold, moist ground. The roofs should have at least a 45 degree slope to keep the chickens inside the coop safe from the rain and snow. There are some chicken coop designs that are A-frames for this reason.

These are some of the basic guidelines that are common to many chicken coop designs but you can alter them slightly to fit your circumstances.

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