DO IT: CHICKEN COOP
Follow Vanessa’s lead – invest in a chicken coop and some chooks and enjoy fresh eggs from your own urban farm.
IF YOU’VE EVER thought about keeping chickens, let Vanessa’s setup inspire you and give it a try. Chooks are rather sociable, so a pair is a good place to start – all you need is a yard that’s at least three square metres, larger if you want more chooks. There’s no need for a rooster, so save yourself, and your neighbours, the hassle and noise.
Buy or make a chicken coop with a purpose-built nesting box for egglaying, an enclosed area with access to light, air and lawn and a sheltered spot with a perch for the hens to sleep on at night. Line the nesting box with fresh straw and install a feeder for pellets and a large water dispenser or bowl for fresh water. Now you’re ready to get yourself some chooks!
STEP 1 Place your kit on the ground and undo the screws to separate the rectangular base piece and hinged bifold roof. Lay the base piece flat. STEP 2 Position the roof on top of the base. Line up the pre-drilled holes and indicator marks to ensure the kit is square and the front door will open. Drill the first screw in, then work along both sides of the coop until you have all six screws in place.
STEP 3 Now fit the back door. It has a fixed top and a hinged flap at the base for accessing eggs. The door is also pre-drilled, so just line up the holes and screw it in place.
STEP 4 Jack the back up slightly with a brick and fit the wheels using an 8mm driver on your drill. Screw them in just tight enough so the wheels can still spin easily.
Note Let your chooks roam around the garden during the day, but make sure they’re in the coop at night with the security pin fastened. Foxes are everywhere – even in the city.
Vanessa’s DIY chicken coop provides a neat home for her three fancy chooks.
Great value Point of lay Australorp or ISA Brown hens can be bought for as little as $25 each.
Starting out This simple A-frame coop is great for small spaces and those who want to try owning chooks.