Today, I want to talk about the 3 biggest mistakes people make when they're building their coops...
1. It's too hard to get the eggs from the nest box.
2. It's impossible to move, what should be, a mobile coop.
3. It's too difficult to clean the coop often enough.
1. When you design your coop, just keep in mind that it has to be simple for you to gather up the eggs quickly. If at all possible, you need to be able to get to the eggs without having to go inside the coop. Whatever you do, don't make it mind-bogglingly difficult to get to the eggs. Simpler and faster is better.
2. I've seen several of these lately:
Large coops that were built to be mobile, but they seem to have slowly and painfully grown roots. Some of my friends build their coops a little bit too heavy to be moved by hand. Of course, they always tell me they can easily hook up a truck or tractor to move it whenever they want.
Unfortunately, over time, 'whenever' becomes never.
And so their coop sits in one spot.
Instead, either plan your mobile coop better - so you can move it by yourself or with 1 other person - OR - design a stationary coop.
3. A very important coop factor is cleanliness. You've heard that cleanliness is next to God-liness? Well no where is this more truthful than with your coop. A good guideline is a 1-2 time per week scraping of the coop. AND a quarterly complete cleaning.
P.S. A couple other additional mistakes I see would be these...
4. Underestimating a chickens ability to fly - especially if you are trying to keep chickens out of a garden OR out of someone else's yard.
5. Not providing enough shade, water, and air flow (ventilation) when it's really hot outside.