by Daisy Luther, The Organic Prepper:
Do you have one of those old A-shaped swingsets rusting in your backyard? If you do, then you have the basis for an awesome swingset chicken coop! (And if you don’t, watch Craigslist – there are frequently people offering them for free to whoever comes to pick them up.) Creativity is key when you go DIY for your coop.
When we moved recently we had to leave our wonderful chicken coop behind, since it was attached to the barn. While I drooled over some of the beautiful chicken Taj Mahals that are available, I’m on a pretty tight budget so it was important to use items that I could acquire either cheap or free. Luckily, the house we moved to had some pretty interesting stuff in a shed and an old rusty swingset in the woods.
I don’t have a lot of construction skills but the guy who put up my fence does, and luckily, he was on board with my wacky, freebie-scrounging ideas.
For the price of some labor, some hardware, some chicken wire, and a fancy-dancy hanging chicken waterer, I got a snazzy new coop that keeps my chickens safe and sound. (Some of the tips for predator-proofing came from this guide.)
Here’s what we used:
- A swingset with the swings removed
- 2 pieces of corrugated metal on the top 3/4 plus a strip of it over the top to help weather proof
- Some sheets of plywood for the bottom back of the coop
- A piece of chain link fencing for the bottom in order to keep out predators
- Some old pieces of fence posts for the bottom of the coop to attach the chicken wire and chain link to
- Some lumber for the door
- Chicken wire (It was cheaper from Amazon than from my local store)
- A double-hinged latch
- A chicken waterer
If you’re making a scrounged chicken coop, be creative and see what you components you can find for cheap or free. Because most of the items used were found, this isn’t as much a how-to as it is something to inspire you. Here are some photos so you can see how my coop was assembled.
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