Many homesteaders have made the decision to build their coop elevated from the ground beneath it. Although homesteaders debate this topic, there are many reasons to give your chicken coop a bit of lift. The height you choose to build your chicken coop off the ground, if any, should be anywhere from one to three feet, depending on your reasons. Here are a few of the most common reasons homesteaders elevate their chicken coop.
1. Protection from predators
Although homesteaders who oppose elevated chicken coops will argue that a chicken coop should provide adequate protection using a solid floor structure and wire mesh netting, other homesteaders claim that elevating the coop prevents predators from entering the coop. If the chicken coop is elevated at least one foot of the ground, predators will have difficulty burrowing and eating holes in the floor of your coop.
In order for this to be effective, however, the coop must be at least one foot off the ground. If your coop is only a few inches off the ground, predators will almost be encouraged to burrow underneath the coop.
2. Climate control
If you live in a warm climate, elevating your chicken coop will help keep temperatures inside the coop at more comfortable levels during the hottest months.
Elevating your coop a foot or more off the ground will give your chickens a place to take shelter when the sun is too hot or when it’s raining.
4. Dust bath
A little vertical space underneath your chicken coop gives your birds the perfect place to take a dust bath.
5. Snow and Ice
In colder climates, snow and ice build up around the door of your coop can make the door difficult to open. Avoid having to dig or chisel your way into the chicken coop by elevating it off the ground a foot or more. Snow and ice won’t build up around the door as much and your chickens will avoid being snowed in.
Elevating the chicken coop allows you to more easily move it to another space on your property. Moving the coop from time to time allows your chickens to peck at different areas of land and avoids you having one area of your property that is overly pecked and other areas that could use some pecking.
7. Floods and rotting
Preventing floods and rotting is one of the most obvious reasons to elevate your chicken coop off the ground. A foot or so of space between your coop and the earth beneath it will prevent rain waters from rising up into your coop and will prevent moisture retention in the floor as well.
These are just some of the many reasons to elevate your chicken coop. Of course, if you live in a temperate climate and your coop has adequate predator protection, you may find that elevating your coop is unnecessary. Other homesteaders may find that this is one of the best decision they ever make!