When my husband and I started our chicken adventure 3 years ago we began with a "store bought" coop that was supposed to accommodate 6 chickens. In no time at all we realized we had to build something bigger and better. I researched books and on-line and found a coop plan I liked right here on Backyardchickens! I made a few modifications and we put it together.
In September of this year hurricane Irma came right up through Florida. It was expected to make landfall right over out neighborhood! We decided to stay and ride it out since we have dogs/cats and chickens! But as things started looking more and more ominous we started considering evacuating. We could take the dogs and cats, but what would we do with the chickens?! We researched all the possibilities and finally came to the conclusion that the best option for them was to leave the coop and run doors open and let them rely on their survival instincts. When we could absolutely wait no longer, we grabbed the dogs/cats and photos and headed north to ride it out in Nashville.
Watching the news was terrifying, we figured we would lose everything and our chickens would surely die. We were heartbroken!
Irma came and went and my husband and I headed home. As we approached the house we could see everything looked structurally intact. And then...from around the side of the house came a chicken! And another! And another!!! All 7 of them made it and seemed absolutely no worse for the ware!!! We lost three trees and our boat dock was destroyed, people up and down our street lost parts of roofs and pool cage sections, but, our chickens were fine!!! We had 15+ inches of torrential rain in just a few hours with wind gusts of over 100 mph! Of course we'll never know how they did it, but those chickens are survivors! I'm guessing they hunkered down in their coop. It was just as intact as the day we built it and cozy and dry inside! They even left a couple eggs for us!! Chickens are AMAZING!!!