Before you buy a hen house, we recommend that you give some consideration to where best to locate your coop. While some chicken coops aren’t too heavy, and can be moved, it’s probably a smart move to find a place that is somewhat permanent. But where is the best place for your chicken house? Well here are a few key areas to focus on before you position your chicken coop.
Give Your Hens Proper Protection
Even though our coops are well made and offer adequate protection for your flock its does not hurt to choose a location in the garden that will add extra protection from the elements. Ideally choose a sheltered area, as your hens will do better in a draft free environment. You also want to make sure that your chicken coops also get enough ventilation, as clean area is also a critical factor to your bird’s health. So it’s a combination between too little and too much. You also want your coop to be sited on a well drained area, because during the winter or whenever it rains, having puddles of water and soggy condition can call disease and can also lead to your chicken coop rotting.
By positioning the windows of the coop in a southerly direction this help ensure that your chickens are keep warm and your coop well light throughout the day.
Since you want to keep the coop away from predators that could cause problems, consider this in your placement. If you have had issues with predators in the past, you should consider building an extra fence or gate around the coop to keep them out and your chickens safe. Otherwise, try and position the coop in a place you can see it quite easily in case you need to keep an eye on everything. Since you obviously cannot be watching the coop 24/7, if predators are a big issue for you, you may also want to consider getting a dog for around the coop, as that will usually do an effective job at keeping them out.
How Much Space Will My Chicken Coop Need
You will want to give your hens a decent amount of space to roam whether it be inside the coop or outside in the run. This can be done simply by reducing the number of hens you actually keep inside your coop. Chickens are social animals so remember to keep at least two, but try not to overcrowd as this can lead to problems. As a rule of thumb if you have a small breed of chicken , like a Bantam then 2 square foot per bird should be considered the minimum. If your flock of hens is made up of larger breeds, then work on a 4 square foot per chicken ratio.
Water and Feed Availability
Ideally you should have a few locations where your birds can easily access food and water. By keeping the water feeders away from the inside of the coop you keep humidity down. Don’t forget to locate the feeders at the right height, so that your hens don’t have to struggle to get food and water.
As mentioned before ventilation is vital if you want to successfully raise chickens in your backyard. A good source of clean air, without any cold drafts is ideal. Damp and stuffy conditions will lead to a build up of ammonia and carbon dioxide. Hens breathe at a very fast rate and bad ventilation is a common cause of death in chicken keeping novices. Try positioning your coops air vents away from prevailing winds so you keep drafts to a minimum, which is a good thing.
So with all that in mind, choosing a position for your coop that adheres to this advice outlined in this article will mean that you will raise happy healthier hens and lessen the possibility of having to move your hen house later down the road.
You can get a lot more great information about raising chickens as well as view a large selection of hen houses on the website: http://www.ChickenCoopsDirect.com
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