Are your birds look’en for a
new summer cottage? Is your old coop in need of
replacement? If the answer is yes, then this could be for you.
With money scarce, the cost of gas on the rise, and annual household
income down, stretching the dollar is paramount. That’s why the
chicken coop featured here today is a good deal and made of mostly used
materials. I call it… The Easy Breezy.
I live in west central
Florida and it’s classified as a subtropical region. This coop
may not be suitable for year-round occupancy if you live in colder
climates. Winter here lasts for only a short period of time and
is generally mild. In December, I cover the sides with plastic
tarps I staple into place. In late January a heat lamp is often
Used materials are:
- Vertical side boards (used fence slats).
- Wire leftover from last coop.
- Cedar shim-shingles leftover from lawn mower shed job.
- Various hardware came from other jobs.
- Nesting box base… previously a card table.
- Door to coop was wood my neighbor was throwing out.
The posts were set and
squared up just like the “Poultry
project. Always use “Pressure Treated” lumber when wood comes in
contact with soil. A must for warmer climates. I also use
Sack-Crete to stiffen up the ground posts and help anchor the coop in
If you have access to an
air-compressor and nail-gun, this is a good time to use it.
Constant pounding with a hammer will act to loosen posts and
timbers. The nail-gun is fast and holds tight.
Note the plastic
tarp. This was to keep my brains from baking in the Florida
sun. This wood was purchased at a local home building
store. One of the few things I did purchase. The homemade
trusses were tied together with nail plates and backed up with plywood
triangle wedges and 3 inch stainless steel deck screws. I
build’em to last. Hey, I live in a hurricane prone
*Note: Stay hydrated and
wear your safety glasses. Safety is your responsibility.
That’s the shop teacher in me coming out.
Notice the edge of the
nesting box the Barred Rock hen is resting on. Box is filled with
hay and pine shavings. The even spacing between the upright
pressure treated fence slats was accomplished by using the same wooden
spacer between each board.
Using smaller nails and
a pneumatic nail-gun made this job a breeze. Ice tea and sports
drinks played a big part too. Stay hydrated.
Every job needs a
supervisor and Angelo fits the bill on this one. Look closely and
you can see the fly strips hanging from the underside of the
coop. Not exactly pretty, but efficient.
Well… Modern tools have
limits. The air pressure regulator on the air compressor died,
but not before the seals blew on the pneumatic staple gun I was using
on the roof… Hence the blue plastic tarp as seen on so many Florida
homes after hurricanes. Look carefully and you can see the the
back side of the nesting box. It has a tin roof for extra
protection. These hens are in high cotton now. We all know
happy hens lay lots of eggs.
Meanwhile, as I wait to
get my pneumatic tools repaired, the blue tarp remains in place and the
hens stay dry. Building wood projects and keeping busy with my
tools seems to be when I’m the happiest so I’ll keep making
things. Next project, an old fashioned wooden tool box like my
Take care and stay safe
when using tools.
Dave Bove, Ret. Shop
Dave Bovee is a retired wood shop
teacher who builds chicken coops for the fun of it. He’s a
regular contributor to Airboating