A Backyard Chicken Coop…Even in the City

Have you always fancied the idea of having a backyard chicken coop but dismissed the notion as you live in the city? Although some cities don’t permit any types of farm animals, many do and you are allowed to keep chickens.

That said, some of the cities that allow people to keep chickens do not permit roosters to be kept due to the crowing and potential complaints from neighbors. You would need to check with your own municipality to make sure that you are not breaking any animal nuisance laws.

People keep chickens for a variety of reasons including the desire for fresh eggs, wanting a different kind of pet, and wishing to have a bit of the country in the city. Producing eggs for family use can not only reduce your grocery bill but many neighbors are joining together to create chicken projects. They split the cost of the building materials for the backyard chicken coops plus the cost of the feed and any incidentals.

If you would like to have hens of your own, building a backyard chicken coop is not a difficult proposition and it doesn’t have to look like the traditional coops you remember. You can design your own plans to make your coop look like a barn or a small house. It just takes a little bit of planning before you get started.

It’s important that your plans provide sufficient space for each chicken as overcrowded conditions can lead to sickness among the chickens. The general rule of thumb for space is approximately four square feet of space per chicken, although it doesn’t hurt to have more. As you are constructing the chicken coop, you should bear in mind the area in which you live.

If you live in a northern state where snow and ice are a regular part of the weather, you’ll need a coop that is adequately insulated to keep the chickens warm. You don’t want to have to bring them indoors in order for them to survive. If you happen to live in an area where the winters are not as harsh but the summers are scorching hot, you’ll have to make sure that the coop is built to provide maximum cooling.

You don’t have to spend a fortune on buying brand new materials to build your chicken house. It can be built from recycled materials such as left over wood from a home project. You can even reuse hinges salvaged from old kitchen or bathroom renovations as hinges for a chicken coop door.

Whatever materials you decide to use to build your backyard chicken coop, make sure you’ve provided good ventilation in the snug home for your chickens otherwise you can get an ammonia build up that’s not good for you or the chickens.