We haven’t totally escaped the storms of 2013 – the recent strong winds destroyed our two Doodle Coops. We managed to cobble the pieces left into one workable coop, though it needed a few screws to keep it together. It’s nowhere near large enough for our large birds, but it’ll do as a broody coop or hospital coop.
The answer? Well, I personally like plastic coops – less trouble with red mite, easier to clean, less sticking in winter when wooden coops can swell. The goose houses and field shelters we have from Green Frog Design are excellent – well made, solid and very easy to clean. I also like their chicken arks, but the big problem is they have no run option for their coops. Part of our promise to ourselves is to try and get the odd day off every now and again, and the option to be able to come back after sundown and not worry about the birds would be lovely. To that end we decided to invest in an Eglu Cube, with an extended run. The run will hardly ever be used – it’s merely an option for when we want to be back late. At the moment it’s probably large enough for four birds, using the square yard per bird equation. We could actually do with another two extension pieces, but we’ll see how this goes for now before investing any more in it. I have to say, having built it, it’s nice and solid, and well thought through. It’s not as easy to clean as a Green Frog ark would be, as they use flat plastic sheeting, but it’s certainly a lot easier to move (as you can see) and very self-contained. It’s the only coop on the market, mass-produced, that has the anti-dig mesh skirt around the run. Believe me, we looked at so many options before deciding on this purchase, I’m not one to jump in to buying something. Let’s hope the chickens like it as much!