I decided to start with a single tanalised post in the ground and then built a frame for the floor out of 100x50mm rough sawn timber and bolted it to the post. Then I attached a sheet of plywood. When I tried standing on it, it wasn’t taking my weight as it was pivoting on the bolts, so I attached some legs to help support it.
I built each of the 4 sides on a flat surface from a plan I’d drawn, using 50x50mm battens in the corners to enable screwing the four sides together. I used the same battens to attach a couple of plywood shelves which finally resulted in a multi-level dwelling for them. I attached a few perches fanned out in a circle around the post so that they could easily make their way up and down as well as a simple ladder. I added a few little hinged doors in positions where I hoped the chooks would lay their eggs.
In one side of the coop I put a large door, hinged at the bottom to enable easy access for cleaning. The roof is also hinged at the apex on one side and is a handy way of taking a quick look inside. All that was needed then was some dried out grass clippings for them to make a nest out of and to make it more comfortable and homely.
When we first got the chooks they were still quite small and we were a bit worried about letting them roam freely in the yard until they got a bit bigger in case a cat decided to have one for dinner. So we started them off in an old ginea pig run. Then we made a little connecting tunnel with some plastic mesh to join the two together.
It was an exciting moment when we finally introduced the chooks to their new home. Amazingly, they made their way straight to the top floor to check out the view, which also brought them up to eye level for a face to face meeting.
They were still quite young at this point so it would be a while before any eggs would be laid.