Recommendations, preferred designs, and links to photos/videos.CHICKENS IN THE WINTER
The first annual Hen-apalooza: Chicagoland Chicken Coop Tour was held on October 3, 2010. Tour-goers selected from among the open coop sites to visit,
meeting hosts and their chickens, doing their thing. Now called the Windy City Coop Tour, it's a 2-day event each September and a great way to learn about urban backyard chicken keeping.
Urban Chickens coops pages.
Green Roof Chicken Coop
Jen Murtoff of Home to Roost Consulting recommends the book Chicken Coops by Judy Pangman, Storey Publishing, ISBN: 978-1-58017-627-9.
And, some free plans/ideas:
See two blog posts from Home to Roost's Jen Murtoff:
Preparing for Winter. Terry Beebe in Backyard Poultry, Volume 1 Number 6, Dec06/Jan07.
Preparing Poultry for Winter. Backyard Poultry, Dec08/Jan09, p.26. Extracted from Randy Stevens' article (he's in Michigan).
LOCAL CARPENTERS FOR CHICKEN COOP CONSTRUCTION & More!
*Recommended by Chicago Chicken Enthusiast, Stephanie Weaver:
We just had a new coop built for us by a fantastic carpenter. We had been using a rabbit hutch for our three hens with a plastic netting attached run but we were having trouble with rats chewing into the run and then getting into the coop. Greg Seymour (firstname.lastname@example.org (773)510-9152) built us a raised coop with a hardware cloth floored attached run that is a much more spacious, rat-proof home for our three girls. I would recommend him for other people looking to build new coops.
*Charlie Hall, carpenter and general contractor in Chicago who uses salvaged and reclaimed materials whenever possible:
I have a full shop on Lake Street in East Garfield Park.
Feel free to contact me regarding any coops, raised beds, or any other building projects that you may be interested in.
Cell phone: 773.412.6049, email email@example.com
Coop de Hill
by Richard McGinnis, as described on Deborah Niemann-Boehle's blog:
We live in a three-flat but only own one floor. We are using shared condo land for a coop so we had a few distinctly urban requirements:
1. The coop should not take up garden space.
2. The coop should be attractive for condo-neighbors.
3. The chickens would spend the majority of their time in a
chicken-run, not in the garden--which is decorative and enjoyed by everyone in
1. The henhouse was built in under the back steps. Electricity was required because this space does not get much natural light. The run was built on an adjacent sidewalk along the side of the house that was not in use. The two spaces are connected by a sliding wooden door, operated by a simple pulley mechanism.
2. The henhouse was built with a beaded-board facade, and painted in bright colors. The chicken run was painted with weatherproof deck stain, to give it a uniform look.
3. A predator-proof (raccoons, opossums) chicken run was built out of wood and 1/4" hardware cloth. It is half covered to protect the hens from the elements. The other half is hardware cloth to allow additional light and air to the area. It was built on cement sidewalk, then lined with mulch, hay and straw. It is 3' x 15" for a total of 45 sq ft, more than enough for the hens to be happy. The chickens get supervised garden time, and in the summer we hose their manure down in the evening so it doesn't bother anyone who wants to enjoy the garden the next day.
The total cost came to around $500. However, we knew from research that building the coop was going to be our big cost and time outlay. We hope this is helpful. Here are some links to our "coop tour" videos: