Every homesteader wishes to be self-sufficient. In fact, that is the ultimate goal if you venture into the homesteading lifestyle. One way to be self-sustaining is to grow and raise your own food. Growing a garden is pretty easy as long as you have a plot of land. You can even do it in an urban setting by growing a small herb garden indoors. Raising animals, on the other hand, is more complicated but doable and certainly rewarding. Ideally, you’d want to raise animals like chickens in a spacious backyard. If you don’t have such a place, you can still raise chickens. Here are some chicken coop ideas for small spaces to help you out.
Why Raise Backyard Chickens?
The most obvious reason why people raise chickens in their backyard is to have a steady supply of fresh and nutritious eggs. If you want to be self-sufficient, you shouldn’t depend on big companies that treat animals inhumanely to enjoy fried eggs, boiled eggs, omelettes, poached eggs, or scrambled eggs. With your own chicken coop, you can take care of your flock or brood the right way.
Eggs are not the only reason why you should keep chickens in your backyard. They’re natural garbage disposal units. Aside from using kitchen scraps for compost, you can feed them to the chickens. This is a win-win situation. You get rid of trash while also saving from the feeds you’d normally buy for your chickens. Also, you can add chicken waste to your compost.
Chickens also make great pets. Instead of your children spending all day in front of the TV or tapping on their devices, they can have fun outside with the chickens.
Why Build A Chicken Coop?
So you want your own chickens in your backyard? It’s not enough to just let them roam around. You need a chicken coop to keep things under control (particularly the messy part), protect the birds and the eggs, and to keep the birds from ruining your garden.
Chicken Coop Tips for Small Spaces
The size of your chicken coop will not only depend on the space you have. You also have to consider the number of chickens you want to raise, how long you intend to keep them in the coop each day, and if you want them to roam free. Here’s a tip: a laying hen for each member of the family should assure everyone gets an egg each time. Still, if there’s 20 of you in the family and you’re backyard is limited, the number of chickens will depend on the size of your coop.
The perfect situation would be to have two to three square feet of space in your coop for each chicken. So if you have four chickens to start with, you need your chicken coop to be 8 to 12 square feet. If you have more available space, you can build a larger coop and add more chickens.
Some people, especially big businesses, will cram as many chickens as they can in whatever space they have. This is pure evil. Chickens still need to walk around and stretch their legs and wings.
When you talk of chicken coop ideas from small spaces, you’re thinking at least two but not more than six or seven chickens. The size of your coop will depend on the available area.
There are two ways you can go about with your chicken coop. First is to buy a chicken coop. There are physical and online stores where you can choose from a variety of chicken coops. Amazon, for one, is offering a number of these chicken coops for small spaces. You’ll receive the coop in parts, which you then have to assemble. This should be easier than assembling IKEA furniture.
Your other option is to build your own coop. If you don’t have any idea what a chicken coop should look like, you can find a number of plans or designs online. We’ve gathered a few chicken coop designs for small spaces you can do on your own or with the help of someone who knows a thing or two about carpentry or woodworking. We also included a five prefabricated chicken coops you can purchase online and assemble at home.
Pre-Made Chicken Coops
Best Choice Products Outdoor Wooden Chicken Coop
The Outdoor Wooden Chicken Coop by Best Choice Products is all about comfort and ease for both you and your chickens. At 79.5 x 26.5 x 51.5 inches, it’s spacious enough for four chickens move around comfortably.
There’s a sliding door ramp for the chickens to easily access the raised housing area, which provides plenty of space for the animals along with the caged running area. The metal wire fencing, meanwhile, keeps the coop properly ventilated.
The chicken coop also aims to keep the chickens safe from the elements. Its solid weather-resistant fir wood construction keeps the rain and most other weather conditions away.
When you’re looking at chicken coop ideas for small spaces, you still want to be able to move as comfortable as possible whenever you have to feed, clean, or do other tasks. This Best Choice chicken coop comes with two doors to help you access any part of the coop. These doors can be locked using the metal locking system so you don’t have to worry about your birds getting out.
There is a nesting box in the cage that can be accessed easily from the roof top. This also makes it easier to feed, replace the water, clean, or collect eggs. The removable bottom sliding tray also allows for easy cleaning.
Aivituvin 69-Inch Wooden Chicken Coop
The Aivituvin 69-Inch Wooden Chicken Coop has a slightly unique design compared with the other chicken coops on this list. This one measures 69 x 26 x 39.4 inches and can accommodate 3-5 birds depending on their sizes. The total ground activity space comes in at a whopping 9.9 square feet.
The chicken run measures an impressive 67.3 inches long, which is larger than other chicken coop designs since it includes the space under the nesting house. The run also utilizes a slanted UV proof roof panel, which makes it easier to reach inside. The chickens not only have more room to play but are also protected from the sun and from predators.
The large nesting box comes with hinged top that makes it easier to deposit and collect eggs. The 24 x 20.7-inch main housing area sports a huge hinged door with a window for ventilation. Inside the hen house is a round edge perch where the birds can roost.
When it comes to cleaning, Aivituvin made sure you’d took care of business. The doors are more accessible while the deeper pull out tray is leak-proof and easy-to-clean.
Sunnyglade Chicken Coop
When choosing among the many chicken coop ideas for small spaces, you still need to look at the most space they can offer. With the previous coop design, they stretched the run to beneath the nesting house. This chicken coop design from Sunnyglade comes with a 58-inch run, which is definitely one of the larger ones on this list. And that doesn’t include the space they get from the nesting and housing areas, and the ramp, as well.
As a homesteader, you want to be as friendly to Mother Nature as possible. Thankfully, this chicken coop is made of durable natural fir wood sourced from sustainable forests protected by the government. The wood is also stained with eco-friendly varnish that’s non-toxic and waterproof to keep your birds safe and warm.
The ramp, which comes with timber ridges to keep the birds from slipping, connects to a sliding door enter the raised housing area. Under the hen house is a removable sliding tray for easy cleaning.
The Sunnyglade 58” Deluxe Wooden Chicken Coop has a raised perch to protect the birds further from the elements. The waterproof pitched roof also allows them to have fun outside without being directly exposed to the sun or getting wet from the rain. The mesh wire cage provides enough ventilation and protects the birds from threats.
Linlux 62-Inch Large Outdoor Wooden Chicken Coop
The Linlux chicken coop is not as large as the one from Best Choice but it should make your list of chicken coop ideas for small spaces. It measures 62.4 x 20.1 inches but is only 28.2 inches high. There’s certainly not enough space for you to get inside but it’s big enough for four chickens to live comfortably.
The outdoor run area measures 34.1 x 20.1 x 20.5 inches, which should be enough for the chickens to move around. The elevated housing area connects to the outdoor run area via a ramp with timber ridges. The ridges prevent the birds from slipping back down. The ramp measures 22.8 x 6.3 inches. The run can also be opened from the top making it a lot easier to do tasks.
The coop is made of high quality natural fir wood protected with waterproof non-toxic paint. They heavy duty galvanized wire fence provides ventilation and protection from predators. The roof, meanwhile, is made of green asphalt to keep water and sunlight out. It can be opened to let your chickens get more sunlight if necessary. More importantly, you can access the housing area easily with the roof panels raised. A removable tray at the bottom of the housing areas slides off easily to lessen the hassles if cleaning up.
Lazy Buddy 41-Inch Wooden Chicken Coop
This Lazy Buddy wooden chicken coop is perfect for four to six birds depending on their size. It comes in at 65.52 x 29.25 x 40.17 inches, which puts it near the top of the most spacious chicken coops on this list.
The raised hen and nesting house provides further space for the birds to move around in the enclosed run, which is similar to other coops. The doors and entrances are also wide making it easier for the chickens to move from place to place. The large openings also make it easier to reach inside and clean up or leave them feeds and water. You can also gather the eggs by simply lifting the hinged roof of the nesting house.
Aside from the comfort brought about by the wide living space, the chickens will also not suffer from heat or cold. The chicken coop is also made of premium natural fir wood painted with non-toxic gold red varnish.
Chicken Coop Ideas for Small Spaces
Annabelle Chicken Coop
The simplest chicken coop design on this list, the Annabelle by The Happy Chicken Coop is made for 2 to 3 chickens. It includes the main housing area and a nest box. Each portion comes with a hinged door for easy access.
You’ll need plywood for the walls and floor. There’ll be lots of cutting and sawing involved so you better have some power saws. Hand saws are fine but if you want your job to be faster and easier, you should invest on power saws, especially if you plan on doing woodworks for a living. The Powermatic PM1000 1-3/4 HP Table Saw is one such tool for serious woodworkers that would make your chicken coop dreams a reality.
Aside from the plywood, you’ll also need angle brackets, door hinges, roofing felt, hardware cloth for the window, galvanized wood screws, door latch, and paint. The Annabelle chicken coop will cost you $150 or somewhere within that range.
Tiny Cottage Coop
How about a cute miniature cottage for your poultry? A member of Backyard Chickens shared a chicken coop plan for a little cottage that can house two to three birds. The floor measures just 4 x 4 feet, which should give enough space for up to three chickens to move around. The main house stands on platform legs made from cedar giving the chickens additional 16 square feet of covered space.
The cottage coop is made of three detachable parts – the base, house and roof. It is designed this way to make it easy to uninstall for cleaning and transport. This requires long screws or latches to keep the parts together. If you use nails, you’ll have a pretty difficult time detaching them. The author also suggested, turning one wall into a door using hinges instead of just having a hatch.
And to make your life even easier, invest on a drill driver. A cordless drill such as the DeWalt 20V MAX 1/2” Li-Ion Compact Drill/Driver Kit will go a long way. Aside from helping you screw and unscrew the chicken coop parts together, it is also useful in house repairs and other DIY projects you can think of.
Urban Chicken Coop
If you’re more of the minimalist type, you should be looking at chicken coop ideas for small spaces such as this one from The Tangled Nest. The Urban Chicken Coop Plan is a raised coop that measures 6 x 3 feet. That’s enough space for up to four chickens.
Like most chicken coops, this one is raised to help air circulate around it. Raised coops will also fare better against rats and flood. The chickens can also rest under the main house shaded from the sun.
The coop is enclosed by a hog wire fence. Hog wire is a better option that the usual chicken wire since it’s more durable, especially against predators. The enclosure is hog wire from top to bottom for better ventilation. It’s also more pleasing to the eyes.
The author mentioned leaving the feeder and waterer inside the coop so he doesn’t have to move it inside when it gets dark. He also prefers hanging the feeders to keep the food away from the litter and the pooping chickens. The feeder is also propped by a brick to keep it from swinging and making a mess.
The Harris Farms Hanging Poultry Feeder is similar to what the author used in his coop. It is made of heavy-duty galvanized steel. The feeder, which is designed to minimize waste, can feed 15 to 30 chickens. The sharp edges are rolled to prevent any untoward accidents while the carry handle doubles as a hanger so you can keep it suspended inside the coop. The height of the 15-pound feeder can be adjusted thanks to the spring loaded clips.
Palace Chicken Coop
From the name alone, you’ll know you’re getting something a little more sophisticated. The palace chicken coop by Steamy Kitchen combines functionality and style. Understandably, it’s a little more complicated to build.
The chicken coop plan requires you to build a structure that is “aesthetically appealing,” which is a no-brainer. It should also be easy to clean and maintain, which is truly possible if you can stand inside. This is why the whole structure measures 12 x 6 feet.
Of course all chicken coop ideas for small spaces need to be sturdy. If you live in a place where typhoons or floods are common, you want your coop to be strong enough to handle such natural disasters. You also want your chickens to be comfortable so aside from having enough space for them to move freely, you need to provide proper ventilation and air movement. This chicken coop design has room for 5 to 7 chickens.
Unlike in most of the chicken coop plans in this list, there is one roof that covers the main house and chicken run. As you can see in the photo, the wire mesh stretches up to the roof and the entrance is large enough for you to get inside.
The floor is also different. They raised the foundation using concrete and gravel. This is mainly to prevent flooding. They then added weed prevention cloth to, you know, prevent weed from growing, and topped it off with sand to complete the floor. All these raised the floor by about six inches.
The author mostly worked alone on his DIY chicken coop project. He suggests using as many clamps and braces as possible to help keep things straight, particularly the frame. Fortunately, Rockler is having a sale on some of their clamps including this set of Rockler Universal Fence Clamps with Clamp-It® Square.
Steady Kitchen also spent a little more time and energy making his chicken coop look pretty. For most finishing touches, a finish nailer such as the Porter-Cable 16 Gauge 2-1/2-inch Finish Nailer Kit should do the trick.
You can find tons of chicken coop ideas for small spaces on the internet. If you know someone who raises chickens, you can ask for advice on how you can design your own. Raising backyard chickens is definitely a worthwhile adventure thanks to its many benefits. Check out Gentleman Pirate Club to know more about how to raise chickens in the homestead.