My room mate Adam and I decided we wanted to raise egg hens, so we got 3 Ameraucanas: Louise, Thelma II, and Thunderbird. They are healthy quickly-growing chicks, and the cardboard box we brought them home in was not enough space for them, so we set out to convert an old wood shed in our yard into a single-(chicken)-family housing unit.
One word about DIY chicken cooping, and especially about converting an existing structure: reconsider. Designing a coop from scratch would be a project by itself. Making that coop fit into a non-square, non-level woodshed is just plain difficult. Especially when the masochism doesn’t stop at site selection, but spills over into materials.
Being a couple of modern sorts, we wanted to be as green as was reasonably convenient, which meant recycling. We had a bunch of scrap lumber lying around the yard, so we decided we could piece together the coop using as much of that as possible. This, and the glaring lack of a power saw, made the design process more complicated and the build more awkward and cumbersome.
Long story short, unless you are a seasoned DIY pro (neither of us has any real experience with carpentry), or, like us, you are in it for a bit of adventure, take to the interwebs and find some plans, then build from scratch.
So we got our plans laid out, bought our materials, and started cutting.
And then the build:
We built a door and a ramp, and then chicken-wired the whole thing, put in wood shavings and fitted a heat lamp, and now the girls have a home!