For those who have decided that keeping chickens is a good way to cut down on their weekly grocery bill the one thing you have to keep in mind is your poultry house design. Your hens are going to need a safe dry place to roost and to lay their eggs. If you do not have room for some form of hen house you may want to think about other alternatives to keeping your own chickens.
The Basic Poultry House
When you start to look at basic poultry house design you are going notice that they come in a tremendous variety of shapes and sizes. No two hen houses seem to look exactly alike, this is pretty normal especially when you stop to realize that the majority of them are home built by people with only a small amount of building experience if any. This is not really a problem as you do not need to be a master builder to put up your own poultry house.
One thing that you will notice with even the most basic poultry house design is that it is made with one thing in mind and that is to provide your flock of hens a secure home. Chickens are a relatively hardy species, but they do have certain requirements including needing a place to stay out of the weather. This means both the cold winter weather and the hot summer sun as they do not have sweat glands to help them stay cool.
What Your Poultry House Must Have
In your poultry house design there are certain elements that you must have and some that are considered non essential but can provide a much nicer environment for your chicken. If you have been looking at different plans you will find that most of them have the same main features no matter what shape they are.
The most important features that the inside of your poultry house should have if you want to have eggs are nesting boxes. These are small “rooms” that your hens will roost in to lay their eggs, chickens prefer to lay their eggs in small darker spaces that are lined with straw and it gives them the sense of being in a nest which is where they would lay their eggs in the wild.
You should also provide them with enough roosting perches so that there is enough space for all of your hens to roost up off the ground at night. Before they were domesticated chicken roosted in trees at night to stay safe from predators and the perches provide them with the same sense of security.
While including a window in your poultry house design is not an absolute necessity you will find that if you put a window in the side where the majority of your summer breezes blow from it will help to keep your poultry house well ventilated and cooled down during the hot summer months. All of this can easily be incorporated into any design and will go a long way toward keeping your hens healthy and happy.