Hello, we, my family and I, are so very new to the idea of chickens in the back yard. I set up the old dog kennel (6 X 10), two dog houses, 3 perches about the same height off the ground, 6 pullets, a watering bottle, and starter scratch. The city came to inspect that the "coop" was 50 ft from the residence and we only have 6. Now we are waiting to see if we are approved to be allow to keep them. In the mean time we are working on nesting boxes. I found a good plan at ByExample.com. We are waiting to see if approved before spending to much $ on more permenant shelter. We have gotten attached to them already. They are basically free range during the day and hearded back to the coop at night. I was told they are great bug control for the yard as well as eggs. I am very open to advice as long as i am not attacked like i was on the GuineaPig site (no- we did not have them for food- they were my pets) . OH and yes those are ducks in my avatar. We had them about 9 yrs ago until i convinced my husband the water bill was too outrageous... over 100 a month. Will get a pick of the chicks soon .... hope they are chicks; not allow to have a rooster.