Wednesday, August 18, 2010

The Coop?

I promised myself that even if only for me, I would start to journal my chicken experiences ...maybe nobody beyond my dear friend will find them entertaining? If that’s the case, Patricia this is for you!

Over the course of this summer, my flock has grown to four. When I first started my backyard chicken experience, I got one beautiful chicken named Dolly along with a small coop.

With winter approaching (yes, it's only August, but I swear I can feel winter already in Montana), I must come up with something better for my beautiful ladies. I have checked Craigs List and looked at other local options, but I guess I'm cheep because as much as I completely adore and am obsessed with my chickens it's all just so very expensive!

Therefore, I am building a chicken coop.

At first building a chicken coop seemed impossible, then $1200 for a coop seemed even more impossible. So, building a coop was then again possible. I ordered plans for this coop online from

I thought it would be the perfect plan for my chickens and me because it’s made from pallets so we’d be recycling and it would be inexpensive! My ladies are free range in our almost-an-acre backyard so I didn’t have to look at plans that had an attached run. (Good, one less thing to build!)

After I got the plans and printed them, I realized there were sure a lot of pages of directions. I read the directions and I don’t really understand what a jig or cross member support is?

But, I am going to try to build a chicken coop.

I asked my husband to bring home pallets. His business is in an industrial area in town so there are always stray pallets in the allies. He got home the other night with his catering van loaded with pallets. They are heavy and I have a couple of splinters from helping unload them.

I looked at the plans again with my seven-year-old son. Either he has a lot of faith in his mother or he understands these plans, as he assures me that we can do it.

So, we are building a chicken coop.

I’m giving myself a month.

I’m..or shall I say...we’re going to start to take apart the pallets tonight.


  1. What a hoot reading your blog on the pallets. I also tried to take them apart and gave up. JEEZ. I ended up using and eight foot pallet and nailing wood between the openings for the floor. That is funny that you sawed them up. I didn't think of that!

  2. They are something else to try to get apart. I had my husband bring home a ton of pallets and only ended up using a couple after I discovered the cedar planks at the hardware store. We have lots of firewood now...however, I still need to get some of the apart! It's going to be so much easier tearing them apart without trying to save the wood. So much for my recycling efforts!

  3. My hubby and I used an electric saw with a 6 inch blade that went back and forth really fast. Wish I knew the name of it. We cut the end nails and I used my elbow grease (read: a hammer and a crow bar) to finagle the middle nails out. I did break all 15 pallets down though. I bought more just in case some wood broke in the process (which it did!) so, the pallet breaking down was a success. Tell me, is that the hardest part to this? ;)