My husband is lazy. But the good kind of lazy 🙂 He sees hard work and then tries to do as little of it as possible by finding the most efficient way. When we decided to get chickens, it had to be easy to maintain them. Thus, the Lazy Man’s Chicken Coop was born. The brain child of a very efficient [and lazy] man. 🙂
Chicken Coop Location
The number one thing that makes our chicken coop low maintenance is the proximity of the chicken coop to our house. It needed to be as close as possible- so we would actually take care of them. Once you walk out our back door- it’s all down hill from there. So the further away: the more cardio we get and the less we would actually do it. 🙂 Just keeping it real here.
We put the Lazy Man Chicken Coop on a steep part of our yard. [Well, more steep than the rest of the yard.] Right up against the railing for the stairs that run along our house. Exactly 14 steps [I counted] from our back door, under the overhang. That’s right. We can run out in our bare feet, in our bathrobes, to take care of the chickens. Glorious!
Standing in one spot you can:
- Collect Eggs
- Open & Close the Chicken’s Door
That’s what make’s this Chicken Coop amazingly low maintenance and lazy. It’s Awesome!
Lazy Man’s Chicken Coop Features
Here is a closer look at each individual feature of amazingness.
The chicken door is wood and slides down into the frame to secure it. The door handle hooks onto the top screw when the door is opened and a lower screw when closed.
Here is a better look at the door handle for letting the chickens in and out.
We can see inside the chicken coop, but the best part is that the house window and the coop window line up. I can look out of the house window and see directly into the coop. I don’t even have to walk outside to see that I forgot to let the chickens out or make sure the door is closed at night!
The nesting boxes come right over to the railing. Super easy to access.
Simply lift the lid.
The latch allows for one handed egg collection.
We have a yellow 5 gallon bucket that feeds down to a row of red chicken nipples. We do have to keep a lid on it to keep the mosquitoes out. Since our chickens are free range, they don’t drink from the waterer as much. They seem to prefer puddles.
The chicken feeder is made from 4 inch green PVC pipe.
The cap comes off to pour the feed in.
It falls down into this tray. Which is the bottom of a 5 gallon bucket wired to the pipe.
The pipe holds at least a weeks worth of feed for our 11 chickens.
Feed Level Indicator-
If that wasn’t easy enough, we also added a feed level indicator. Since we don’t have to feed them that often we tend to forget. 🙂 The handsome lazy man took some fishing line, bobber and a weight [old drawer knob] to make the feed indicator. He tied the weight to the end of the line and it rests on the feed. He then ran the line out a tiny hole he drilled in the side. As the chickens eat the feed, the weight goes down further in the pipe and the red & white bobber gets higher. So when the bobber is all the way up – the chickens are on their last day of feed. It’s nice to just be able to look out the window and see if they need feed. The only thing is, you have to remember to pull the weight back OUT before refilling the pipe. 🙂
Platform- [The Ultimate Lazy Feature]
The platform was added after many broken eggs. The 3 year would collect the eggs and then jump down with the bucket, smashing everything. So now there is a little stand perfect for him to reach into the nesting boxes and collect eggs [safely]. Nothing is lazier than having someone else get the eggs for you! 😉
The blue tub is water/animal proof and holds about three or four, 50# bags of feed (depending on how hard you try). [I got it at a yard sale, full of Christmas lights, for $10. SCORE!]
We made several different types of roosts. The “natural roosts” made from tree limbs are the less desirable ones. The ones made with 2x4s are the prime roosts. Also the roost by the window is the most coveted spot. That is where the rooster and his favorite ladies sit.
The ramp has limbs screwed onto the board to give the chickens traction.
There are two doors/windows on each end of the Chicken Coop. It allows for good air flow and easy access for cleaning out the coop. In the winter, we partially close the end on the wind side to reduce direct wind on the chickens. We leave the other window open to give them good ventilation.
We also have an access door on the bottom to get to the feeder and waterer.
We used welded hardware mesh wire for the windows and the enclosed run area under the chicken coop. We had read that chicken wire was only good for keeping chickens in not predators out. 🙂 From the ground, we bent the wire mesh and extended it out 6-8 inches. Then buried it. That way, in case a predator started to dig down, they would run into the wire mesh a few inches down and give up.
To date, we haven’t had any predator issues….. We keep waiting for it to happen, but the predators seem more interested in our trash [and compost] than our chickens.
Loving Our Chicken Coop
We’ve been using the chicken coop for about a year and a half now. It has been working really well and the chickens seem to like it too. Funny, we still find ourselves trying to find an even lazier [more efficient] way to care for the chickens. If we come up with anything else we will be sure to let you know. 🙂 The more low maintenance we can make the chicken coop, the more we can enjoy our chickens. And the saved time is nice to spend on our other homesteading projects…. or Netflix. 😉