Chicken coops come in all shapes and sizes. The idea is to provide secure shelter for the chickens so that they can be warm and comfortable, delivering the largest bounty of eggs that they possibly can. An improper structure simply means an improper environment for the chickens to fulfill their purpose.
But there is some confusion and misconception about why many chicken coops are designed the way they are. For instance, a simple Google search about why chicken coops have two doors will lead to more jokes than actual answers.
Still, there is a lot to know about chicken coops. Why do they really have two doors? What are the advantages of having chicken coops? This is the guide that will let you know everything there is to know about chicken coops.
Why Do They Have Two Doors?
Though chicken coops can come in a lot of different shapes and sizes depending on the number of chickens involved, they typically come with two doors. While this might seem random, there is a reason behind it.
The main reason that chicken coops have two doors is quite simple. There is one door that acts as an entrance for the chickens to move in and out of their shelter. They will understand which door is meant for this purpose and know to flock there.
The purpose of the second door is so that there is access to the eggs. Chicken coops are generally not big enough to accommodate human beings. Because of this, there needs to be access to the eggs for the owner, which is the purpose of the second door.
Easier access to the eggs also prevents scaring the chickens. Think about how scary it has to be for a chicken to see a human being trying to shove their way into their small domain.
There is also another reason that there are two doors that come standard on chicken coops. There is the access door where the chickens can exit and spend time in the wide-open space of the yard. This is the main access door.
The second door can then be fitted for the back of the chicken coop, leading into a more secure, secluded area of the yard with wire fencing. These are essentially playpens where chickens can hang out in the sun while offering the protection of the wire fencing.
Still, those aren’t the only intended uses of doors on a chicken coop, but that is generally why you will see them.
Why the Need for Chicken Coops?
Chicken coops have been compared to dog houses in the quality of shelter that they offer and their construction. While the similarities are certainly there, there are distinct differences given that dogs typically will live in the house with their owners. Chickens, in most cases, will not.
So, that presents us with the real question of why chicken coops are a good idea. They offer many distinct advantages to the property owner.
The biggest reason and advantage of having a chicken coop is that it provides a safe place for the birds to rest. Predators of chickens can come in all shapes and sizes and they need to have safe haven from those predators. This is especially true given that some of the chicken’s natural predators can be nocturnal animals.
Even if you live in an area that is thinly populated with natural predators, never assume that your yard is safe without a coop. Raccoons, foxes, and other natural predators will find out that the chickens are there, and they will take the chicken and run off.
Although chicken coops are great for keeping the elements off of the chickens, they are more about offering actual protection. For chicken owners who have had their hens taken from them before, they can attest to the need for safety and protection for the chickens.
Protecting the Eggs
Pretty much the entire reason for owning chickens in the first place is their production of eggs. Chickens will produce a lot of eggs, great for consistent use or for selling them at local markets. Eggs straight from the hens also have that natural taste that so many people crave. The products that line the shelves may not have that same flavor, making the authentic article more desirable.
Chicken coops will also protect and shelter the eggs from predators and the elements as well. Those eggs need a secure, warm space to safely grow and the chicken coop offers just that to both the chicken and the egg.
Protection From the Weather
Keep in mind that this is not a universal truth for chicken coops. The most inexpensively built coops won’t have any kind of insulation and will have temperatures that rise and fall with the temperatures outside.
There are mechanical chicken coops that not only offer shelter from rain and wind but will keep the chickens and their eggs safe and warm during the coldest of winter months. When they can rest comfortably, this allows the hens to produce their eggs in optimal temperatures. This will allow for better quality eggs than you may get from the ones that have to endure the cold, too.
Chicken coops are great at keeping the chickens and their eggs warm and sheltered from the elements. But did you know that they are great for protecting against disease? Birds have their own diseases too and the avian flu is a real threat to birds across the globe.
All it takes is for one of the chickens to get sick for it to spread throughout the rest of the group, thinning down the numbers in rapid succession. Illness isn’t just a problem for the chickens; the eggs are just as susceptible.
Having a chicken coop keeps the birds feeling healthy year round and allows for the eggs to do the same as well.
You Can Get Creative
If you plan on building a chicken coop on your own, there is room for creativity to be had. Buying a pre-made chicken coop can leave you at the creative mercy of how it was constructed. But if you build your own, you can do it with several purposes in mind.
Creating different nesting beds is easy and they can be made from repurposed items around the house or yard. Heck, you can even repurpose old furniture into housing for the birds. The same goes for scrap wood that you may have lying around. If you have a shed that may need tearing down, you can repurpose it into a more luxurious coop.
The point is that you can turn the coop into anything that you want it to be. It can house chickens and be a dog house as well if you trust your dogs around the chickens. Provide enough space to simply walk through and collect the eggs, too.
Whatever you want it to be, a custom chicken coop can be just that. Do-it-yourself types can put together a luxurious-looking chicken coop in just a couple of days and leave the chickens feeling happy, warm, and protected like no other coop could offer.