Building Chicken Coops For Dummies
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The style of chicken coop you build depends on many factors, including the size of your flock and the space limitations of your property. Chicken coops come in many shapes and sizes, but most fall under one of these popular categories:

  • A-frame: Generally among the smallest coops, the A-frame uses a minimum of materials and a space-saving design to house a flock of just a few birds. A compact shelter is attached to a protected run in a long, triangular structure. (A “hoop” coop follows the same basic plan but with an arched shape instead.)

  • Tractor: A tractor coop is unique in that it’s meant to be moved from one location to another. Most often built with wheels or on skids, a tractor is pulled to areas where the chickens work the soil in the attached, open-floor run.

  • All-in-one: An all-in-one coop features a small shelter for a modest-sized flock and an incorporated run under a single roof, with one or both large enough for human entry, yet it’s small enough to be relocated easily.

  • Walk-in: Often a repurposed toolshed or playhouse, a walk-in coop is large enough to accommodate humans inside the shelter. The walk-in’s size allows for bigger flocks and often provides storage for chicken feed and equipment. Many are built with an adjacent run.

About This Article

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About the book authors:

Todd Brock is a television writer and producer whose work includes PBS's Growing a Greener World, DIY Network's Fresh From the Garden, and HGTV's Ground Breakers. He is the coauthor of Building Chicken Coops For Dummies. Dave Zook owns Horizon Structures, which makes custom chicken coops. Rob Ludlow is the owner of, a top source on raising chickens, and the coauthor of Raising Chickens For Dummies. Rob and his family raise a small flock in their backyard.

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