Need to build a small, cheap, *easy* coop ASAP


In the Brooder
10 Years
Aug 13, 2009
Hey guys! I just had a massacre in my old chicken coop
I lost 8 chickens in two nights. The surviving 2 bantam hens are currently inside my house where I am quite certain that no predator will find them. Sadly, however, they are in a small dog crate. They have a decent amount of room, but they obviously cannot stay there for very long. I am a female, about 100 lbs, and my husband is away because of the military. We have a small budget. I need a way to construct a predator-proof chicken coop that will not cost much and will be easy enough for me to do myself, and in a short amount of time. any ideas? I have looked at the coop design section but they all seem very complicated. Right now I need a simple, temporary solution. It doesn't have to be pretty and it doesn't have to be great. It will be a temporary solution until I can figure out something better. But these little hens cannot stay in that dog crate forever!!! The biggest thing is that it must be predator-proof. I was also wondering if planting aromatic plants (herbs etc) would help to throw predators off a little? make it harder for them to smell the chickens? Or is there some kind of scent I can put on or around the coop to deter or scare away predators? would adding motion detectors help? a recording of a barking dog maybe? I am willing to try anything. Thanks so much!!!



It's all about the Dels!
9 Years
10 Years
Jan 24, 2010
Englewood, TN
Personally, I would build one fast. Doesn't have to be pretty. Build it off the ground, make it solid. Just think a box on stiltz and you got a good start.

I'll PM you pics of a coop I made on my front step in about two hours. It houses two bantams.


12 Years
May 29, 2007
Chicken Country, U S A
Ahh, ok.
Im in Cali . . .

I was gonna offer to help you out making a cheap but very presentable tractor . . .

Check CL, search words: coop, playhouse, playpen, hutch, chicken, fencing, rabbit, etc . . .
You should be able to find something that could work, and we are here to help!

So a quick search for coop found this in Biloxi, no idea where either Hammond or Biloxi is, coop
Offer this person $100 . . .
Id walk away with it for $45, but Im pretty good.
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12 Years
Dec 16, 2008
Northern Nevada USA
I second the Craigslist idea. I've gotten a lot of stuff for free. But even when I've payed for my stuff I can't buy the materials for that price. Look for someone who is getting rid of a coop or even a dog house. Then you can do the modifications to make it predator proof.


11 Years
Aug 22, 2008
Roberts, WI
You can also look for dog houses on Craigslist and modify them a little or not at all. We got a chain link dog kennel with a top for 80 dollars this year.


11 Years
Apr 9, 2008
Minneapolis, MN
My Coop
My Coop
I'm sorry to hear about your loss. That's terrible.

I'd find a dog house either on CL or freemarket and make a door/lock for it. That's probably going to be your easiest version, and cheapest too.

Before my coop was built, I picked up a free shipping crate that I was going to use for a temporary coop. It used to hold a bathtub. I found it by stalking behind a hot-tub store in the parking lot and they were more than happy to let me haul it away for free. It was 2x4 construction, had plywood sides and a removable top. I know that my husband also had a crate similar to this that his motorcycle was shipped in. Check motorcycle shops - I'm sure they're getting spring shipments in now for summer riding. Also, check auto repair businesses - they often get new engines that have been crated. They'll be a bit smaller, but should be free.

If you don't have a friend who can help you with making some doors (jigsaw work and adding hardware), I'd recommend looking on CL for a carpenter. There are plenty of people who need the work right now and I'm sure they would be happy to give you a good deal.

Good luck!

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