Building a chicken coop in the tropics

There are a few things we had to make to get ready for our future chickens.

Fence: Our fence would be about 2m high and connect to the roof to stop any possums climbing in the coop at night and eat all our chickens.(2.5 cm mesh woven in a honeycomb is the most secure)

Chicken Door: We needed to build a chicken sized door 30 cm wide *35 cm high – don’t forget to have a latch to close at night and to also make a ramp


Roosts: Roosts should be flat 5cm*10cm with rounded edges – (count 20 cm per chicken) – 60 cm above the floor, 45 cm from the rearest parallell and spacing them 45 cm apart


Outside bamboo roost


Inside roosts for the hens to sleep at night














Nests / Nest boxes:

Nest Nest construction

Size for Loghorn type chickens: 30 cm wide* 35 high * 30 deep (Size for heavier breeds: 35*35*30) – count one nest per 4 chickens. Build a perch just below the entrance – 10 cm sill along the bottom edge of each nest. Place nests on the ground until the chickens get used to them! Then move the nests 45 cm/50 cm off the ground. Place nests on the darkest wall of the coop and build a 45 degree sloped roof on top of the nests (avoid perching)


Water: 1 chicken drinks 1 or 2 cups a day sometimes up to 4 cups in really hot weather. Serve the water at 10 to 13 degrees celcius (50F) and keep it in the shade. Best placed over a droppings pit ( Wooden frame – staple strong wire mesh to oneside and set the box , wire side up on a bed of sand) to avoid chickens mixing their water and their droppings:  – place the waterer on top (chickens have to hop up to drink)

Homemade waterer: We used the bottom of a 5 gallon water bottle and pierced the bottom of a 2.5 gal bottle – where we drilled 2 holes opposite each other and 188 mm from the open end

2.5 gallon tank in a 5 gallon tank cut at the bottom

2.5 gallon tank in a 5 gallon tank cut at the bottom


Drilled hole in 2.5 gal. bottle













Feeder: If possible, hang from chains (under covered area. Always rake and push old feed to one side and empty / scrub the through once a week – Have enough feeders to feed 1/3 of the flock at the same time

Chicken Feeder 1

Homemade Chicken Feeder2 things remain to be done: We will be adding lino as floor cover for our coop to facilitate cleaning :)

And we will be making some dropping boards to collect the chicken manure…. And then we are ready to welcome our CHICKENS!