DH and I built a very nice run in our backyard. It's nine feet by fifteen feet, and six feet high. Uprights are 2x4's every three feet on the sides and overhead. We placed a square floor tile under each upright to provide a level solid surface for the upright board to sit on. Horizontals at the bottom just three inches above ground, and horizontals again at six feet from the ground. Wherever the lumber meets another board, we used glue and screws and secure metal connectors. It's all very solid and immovable. The run is covered in heavy gauge wire mesh between the uprights and the entire ceiling is open to the air but is covered with that same wire mesh between the rafters. Clear hard plastic corrugated panels placed over the entire structure, tilted slightly to allow rain and snow to run off at the back of the run. Those panels are raised up above the wire ceiling, so the entire structure is open air and is the same temperature as outside the run year round. Mesh is buried ten inches into the ground and then goes out horizontally for another two feet underground. There is no floor covering. The floor of the entire run and the coop is the hard packed earth, covered in softwood shavings. Here's my question: Do I have to worry about the Village codes concerning the building of such a structure? I'm allowed two hens, and that's all I've got. But if I ever invite anyone from the Village administration (Mayor, building inspector, etc.) to see my ChickArena, am I asking for trouble? Can they ask me to dismantle it because I didn't get a permit to build it? Do animal pens require permits? There's no floor, no roof, no windows, so does it qualify as a "building?" I'm about to ask the Village for a variance so I can be allowed a few more chickens, and my request letter invites them to come see my beautiful setup. The coop itself is a pretty little plastic playhouse that we converted into a coop by adding a roosting board and a nest box. The coop is freestanding inside the run and is not attached to the run in any way. The chickens can enter and leave the coop whenever they want, so I don't ever have to wake up early to let them out or to lock them up at night. For the winter, we cover all the walls of the run with clear plastic shower curtains, tacked down on all sides, and that keeps the wind out. Here's a photo of the ChickArena today, with the winter curtains installed: We leave the ceiling open to the air. Our two hens have lived there for a year and a half now, and are healthy and happy. We let them free range outside of the run during the day in our big grassy backyard. At dusk, I lock the door to the run and that keeps the hens safe inside from our local raccoons. We don't have any other predators in this neighborhood of Long Island, N.Y. If anyone is interested in seeing how we converted the grandkids' playhouse into a chicken coop, here are some photos that I took today: This is the back of the coop. We covered the big opening with an old storm window that we had. It sits in a track slit and is held in place by two little prongs at the top. I can rotate the prongs out of the way, and remove the window to Windex it clean every now and then. I keep the window slid to the right to allow a one inch space for air flow all summer: Here's an outside view of the back of the coop showing the picture window, and the left side of the coop which is the side with the roosting boards: Here's the view from the front door. You can see the roost boards on the left, the picture window in the back, and the nest box on the right: This is the view from the little window that's next to the front door. You can see the picture window at the back, with the ladder to the nest box, and the bridge walk from the nest box to the roost boards. You can also see the little chicken door on the bottom of the back wall under the picture window. I keep it covered year round with wide strips of clear plastic loosely hanging down over it, and the chickens just walk right into it to get in and out of the coop: Here's a view through the picture window of the ladder to the nest box and the bridge walk to the roosting boards: Looking into the nest box from inside the coop: I opened the drop down backdoor of the nest box and took this view of the inside of the nest box. That's a wooden decoy egg in the nest box. You can see the roosting boards across the coop: And here's an old photo of the outside of the nesting box, before we painted it white. You can see how the back of it opens and drops down via the hinges we installed at the bottom. It makes egg collection real easy, and is just the right height for the grandkids to collect the eggs: I've searched the online codes for the Village, trying to find any reference to permit requirements for this sort of structure, but can't find anything. Here's the link to the Village Codes, can anyone find anything relevant about needing a permit? http://www.ecode360.com/?custId=FR0651 If anyone is interested in seeing the variance-request letter that I've drafted to send to the Village, I'm going to post it as a separate message in the BYC message board called Local Chicken Laws and Ordinances. I think it's a good letter, but I'm worried about whether I should keep or delete the sentence where I invite them to come see my ChickArena coop and run and also whether to keep or delete the photo of it.