Wooden v plas­tic hous­ing

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Q Which is bet­ter, plas­tic or wooden hous­ing?

A Andy Cawthray says: Chicken hous­ing is now built in a va­ri­ety of ma­te­ri­als when once it was only tim­ber. There are, how­ever, only re­ally two main play­ers, wood and plas­tic. Wooden hous­ing of­fers a greater level of flex­i­bil­ity and mod­i­fi­ca­tion with hous­ing avail­able not only to meet the spe­cific needs of cer­tain breeds but also to blend with the en­vi­ron­ment the house is in. Wood is also a nat­u­rally breath­able prod­uct and a well-de­signed wooden house will not suf­fer from con­den­sa­tion even when ven­ti­la­tion is poor. They are also far eas­ier to re­pair should the need arise.

Plas­tic hous­ing has a lim­ited num­ber of de­sign op­tions as the sec­tions tend to slot to­gether or are pre-moulded; this, how­ever, does mean that when it comes to clean­ing and an­nual main­te­nance, the task can be sim­pler. Plas­tic re­quires no treat­ment with a pre­server and weekly clean­ing is sig­nif­i­cantly eas­ier and quicker mean­ing they can be cleaned out, washed and dried in less than 30 min­utes. This also makes them the eas­ier of the two ma­te­ri­als to deal with when suf­fer­ing a red mite in­fes­ta­tion; but don’t be fooled, no house no mat­ter which ma­te­rial it’s built from will be red mite proof.

In the end your per­sonal pref­er­ence and bud­get will de­cide which ma­te­rial you will go with as they have pros and cons in equal mea­sures.

RIGHT INSET: Typ­i­cal wooden hous­ing for a sub­stan­tial flock This coop is made from re­cy­cled plas­tic. Photo cour­tesy Green Frog De­signs

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