Ok, well being that I'm new to having chickens ... and we're getting 75 - well actually 78 peeps on June 18th ... We need to start planning and building our chicken coop soon. We have a brooder ready for the peeps - so we do have some time to work on a coop since they will be in the brooder for a little while. But we still need to get planning. So ... I looked at the thread with all the creative chicken coops pictured .... lots of creative people !!! But I do still have a few questions ~ 1. If I have nice nest boxes setup for my hens - will they use them naturally - or will they just lay eggs wherever they please - in the area they have access to ? 2. This might seem like a dumb question ... but when do hens lay their eggs ? Do they lay at night ? Or just anytime ? 3. If I have a closeable coop ... but let my chickens out during the day free range, and then just stick them back in the coop before dark - will they only lay their eggs in the coop/nesting boxes ... or will they lay them "everywhere" while they're free range during the day ? (I guess this question kinda goes along with question #2) 4. If I allow my chickens to be free range during the day - do I still need to have "perches" in the coop ... if they'll only be in there at night ? 5. Does the coop need to be vented ? (like cow barns and horse barns need vented) 6. Does the coop need to have windows/natural light inside ? Or can it just be completely closed in (dark) ... as long as I let they chickens outside during the day ? 7. Can the nesting boxes be very high off the ground ? I mean - how do the chickens get up into them if they are high - especially if their wings are clipped ? (I know this sounds like a dumb question ... but I need to learn the answers somehow ) Well, I think that's enough questions for now ... lol ... but I'm sure I'll think of more as time goes by.