If you are looking for the best hen coops plans then there are a few things you need to check out first. I have used a good set of various hen coops plans which gave me everything I wanted, but the reason that the plans include many different layouts is to meet the various needs you have for your hens coop, not least of which is how many hens you want to keep.
The easiest way to see what designs are available is to check out the hen coops plans, which show you clearly how much space, time and money each take to build. Understanding what sort of hen coops you can get and meet your requirements will help narrow down the large selection and allow you to start costing out the items needed from the plans. There are hundreds of different styles and designs available, and size and budget will definitely come into play, and you are going to want to have a definite amount of money in mind before deciding looking at any chicken coop plans. Each chicken should have about 4sq feet of coop space to keep them happy and healthy. Do not skimp on the size of your chicken coop. Chickens that live in undersized coops resort to abnormal pecking and even cannibalism. I am sure you do not want this! So if you have a coop holding 5 chickens, 20 square feet will be ample room for your chickens to grow, feed, and produce. Bear in mind that unless you are going to be selling your eggs, 4-6 chickens will produce enough eggs for most families.
Choose the right location
As much as it’s important to focus on a budget, you also don’t want to choose a plan or design that is so cheap, as to be an eyesore to other people in the neighborhood, or go with something so large that it completely overpowers the area in which it will be placed.
The average healthy chicken can lay up to 300 eggs a year so that can give you a good idea of how many you want to keep and what space they will require. Measure out the area first, making sure that you level and clear any parts of the garden or yard where the coop will be placed. Once the area is measured and cleared, it’s time to choose the chicken coop plans that best suit your needs, and if you find one that you really like, but it seems a little out of your price range, you should think about perhaps using some second hand materials and tools which will help reduce the price. Some plans are designed to use almost totally reclaimed wood from pallets so the cost of building your coop could be almost nothing. If this is your first go around at raising chickens, it may be wise to stick with a plan that is small and manageable to begin with. Choose a hen house plan that is basic, but that can be added to and extended at a later date. Deciding to plan and build on your own, or with the help of friends, can save you hundreds of dollars or more, long before you start saving on eggs.
Build Your Coop for Easy Maintenance
One of the largest obstacles when maintaining a chicken coop is cleaning it. Some people do not build their coops with ease of maintenance in mind, and suffer the consequences later on. But you can learn from their mistakes, and ensure that your coop will be easy to clean in the future. One very important feature is to make sure the floor of the coop is sloped downward toward the main door. When you wash the inside of the coop, the water will automatically drain outside, instead of puddling in the middle.
Protect Your Coop From Weather and Predators
It is important that you build your chicken coop with the protection of the chickens in mind. Both weather and predators can wreak havoc on your coop, so build it with these tips in mind. Hen coops plans have details of how to address both issues. Build the coop on a high area, or lifted off the ground, with ample drainage and locate it door facing the sun. In the event that it rains, this location will not only ensure that the coop does not get flooded, but that it dries quickly when the sun comes out. Build your doors, windows and vents with proper strength mesh wire. This is one of the most common mistakes people make when building their coop and one that is clearly detailed in the plans. Proper strength ‘chicken wire’ is readily available either online or from a hardware store. If you say what it is to be used for, most sellers will help you choose the right gauge wire. Remember, the wire is not just there to keep the hens in, but more to keep the predators out.
These are just a few of many tips given alongside build plans in the Chicken Coop Plans Guide that will allow you to build the best chicken coop and provide real care for your hens.