Chickens have full-colour vision, just like humans do.
Housing your Chickens
Choosing a suitable house for your chickens depends on how many you plan on keeping.
In general housing for your hens must:
be free of draughts but offer adequate ventilation
have a dark area for hens to nest and lay
have perches to allow hens to roost
offer protection from predators
Depending on where you plan on keeping your hens, whether in your back garden or on an allotment, there are a variety of shelters to choose from.
Convert a Shed to a Coop
Converting an existing shed will save money, needs only a few adjustments and is great if you plan on keeping more than 12 hens (based on a 6′ x 4′ shed). All that is required are some perches and nest boxes.
Chickens naturally perch at night so it is essential you provide perches. Perches should be around 60cm from the floor and be easily removed for cleaning or to replace. It is important to keep perches clean in order to keep the hens feet in good condition.
Traditional purpose built hen coop
Purpose built chicken coops come in a variety of sizes with optional runs attached with built in nest boxes and perches. These look great and tend to be well built, solid structures but can often be quite pricey ranging from £200 upwards.
Eglu’s are great if you want to keep between 2 – 4 medium size chickens or up to 5 bantams, and only have a small garden. They are waterproof, look great, easy to maintain, fox-proof and come with an optional run (also fox-proof). You can even invest in the starter kit which comes complete with the Eglu, a run, hens, and all the sundries like feeders and feed.
Chickens communicate with more than 24 vocalisations, each with a distinct meaning, including warning their friends about different types of predators or letting their mothers know whether they’re comfortable.
About Clucks & Chooks
This site has been designed to offer tips, advice and a guide to keeping hens. When I started out on the daunting task of preparing for life as a hen keeper (for eggs and as pets) I struggled to find information on the web and often found myself submitting questions on hen keeping to numerous forums. I am in no way an expert but I want to offer nuggets of advice which I have picked up along the way on areas which I have experienced and had to deal with. Hopefully you'll find this of some use.
With the recent recession affecting a lot of people, self-sufficiency is becoming more of a popular thing and keeping chickens can offer a valuable source of food and nutrition whether its from the eggs they produce or the chicken themselves.