I've shown off my birds a lot, but thought I'd share some of my set up. It’s a rainy, grey day but everyone cooperated for the photo shoot.
I'm not a farmer, I'm a hobbyist and decided I wanted both a practical and aesthetically pleasing coop and pen. I spend a lot of time with my birds so I wanted it to be clean and attractive.
My 1200' sq ft pen contains:
• A 13’x8’ ft coop, concrete foundation, insulated, wired and divided into two sections. One is the main coop accessible by an automatic door and the other is used for supplies, infirmary, broody hens or chicks. It has a manual door out to a 4’x9’ pen
• A 4’x 8’ three-sided shed for supplies – the metal roof supplies rain water for two 50 gallon cisterns
• A 8’x 8’ covered area that stays dry year round
• Four fruit trees and a 3’x 6’ open compost bin. I’m part of two food recovery programs and get lots of great fruits and veggies for the girls several times a week.
• A 20’ x 10’ car shelter which is partially tarped – again, it stays dry and I’ve set up tires and metal rings filled with wood ashes for their dust baths
• The whole top is netted. My only predators have been hawks
Last fall, I expanded and added on a 480 sq ft pen accessible from the main pen as well as a second gate. It houses a 4’ x 8’ coop (divided in the middle, each side is identical) for my grow outs. I was able to net off one end of the pen for broody hens and chicks, which worked out really well. When the hens were ready to return to the main coop the chicks transferred to the coop with the teenagers.
The coop is covered by a 10’ x 20’ car canopy, which keep it and the surrounding area dry (and me, when I’m doing chores). The open areas at either end are netted from hawks.
Here is the link to my article on Backyard Chickens about building my second coop spending only $40 by using freecycle: