Everything you ever wanted to know about keeping chickens at home.
This site will show you the basics of keeping chickens; What type of chicken should I get? What shall I feed them? What should I house them in? How many eggs will I get? and lots more.
So if you've ever asked 'How do I keep chickens at home?' I will show you how easy it is and how much fun it can be :)
Keeping Chickens at Home - Pictures of the large Henhouse.
This is the larger 'shed' Henhouse. The shed was placed on stilts about 2' off the ground. The area underneath the shed remains very dry and with the sides blocked off, it is a great place for the chickens to have a dust bath or just to keep out of the rain and wind. Chickens like to have somewhere to hide for predators as well. We have a lot of buzzards around here, so the chickens like to feel safe if they see one and quickly run to cover under the shed if one is around. Ventilation is very important to keep the Henhouse fresh and free of smells. I removed one of the windows and put a larger vent in it's place. I also drilled large holes all around the edge of the shed, just under the roof edge. Chicken droppings give off ammonia so you need to keep air circulating to avoid a build up. You won't have any problems though by having just a couple of birds and changing the straw bedding often.
This is the hatch I made at the back of the shed. Simple hinged door. Give direct access to the nestboxes and the eggs (yum yum) without having to go through the front door all the time.
Here's the back of the shed and the hatch area again taken from further away so you can see the layout better.
The inside of the henhouse. The nestboxes are located lower than the perches and at the back of the house next to the hatch. All freshly bedded out with straw. A bale of straw costs about £2 and will last a small henhouse with 3 hens about 2-3 months, changing every 3-4 weeks.
Here's the front door and ramp area. The ramp doesn't need to be anywhere near as sturdy as that. I just had that bit of wood hanging around. Just make sure to have some horizontal slats for the them to get a grip on. Notice how the door has been slid up and locked in place with a nail. At night, the nail is simply removed and the door comes down and closes the birds in. You can actually buy automatic doors that open and close by themselves. They have light sensors on them and when it gets dark, the door automatically closes. When it gets light again in the morning, the door opens, letting the chickens out.
Keeping Chickens at Home - Pictures of my Henhouses (and a Pig Ark).
This is a small Henhouse for about 3-4 chickens I built from a couple of front doors. It incorporates an enclosed run, which can be covered. I use this one to isolate hens when they are poorly or being a nuisance to other birds. The nesting/sleeping area has a separate door which can be closed at night for additional security and to make it snug!
Thought you might want to see the pig ark. Pork Chop was making a racket again. Always wants to be the centre of attention!
This is my largest Henhouse. It's a old 6' x 4' shed. I put in a front door hatch, back door to get eggs and perches inside. It holds 20 chickens comfortably. I'll put some additional interior/exterior pictures of this one in the next post.
This is my small Duck house. Not being used at the moment. Apart from the chickens who like to have a nose every now and again. Occasionally, they get lazy and leave the odd egg in there for me!
This is another Henhouse I made from 5 front doors, with windows! The whole back opens up for egg collection and easy cleaning. The only trouble with this house is that it weighs an absolute ton!. All the houses are raised off the ground. This one is on several wooden posts. I also use them to roll the henhouse around the chicken area, moving one post from the back to the front as I progress across the field.