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A chicken coop in a high fenced backyard, with mesh walls and two chickens inside, a planter box on the roof and a ramp leading up to a raised nest area

Overview

You can have fresh eggs on tap by building your own chicken coop. It'll make a great home for your chooks and they'll reward you with breakfast. You can also put a mini-garden on top to grow some herbs, and we'll show you how.

Steps

1Cut your timber

To make this project easier we've had our timber pre-cut at Bunnings, here's the cutting list.

Door frame

70mm x 35mm treated pine:

  • 860mm x 2
  • 930mm x 2

Front door

70mm x 35mm treated pine:

  • 780mm x 2
  • 815mm x 3
  • 345mm noggins x 2

Side frames

70mm x 35mm treated pine:

  • 930mm x 8
  • 1200mm x 4

2Timber for roosting box supports and base frame

2 sides

70mm x 35mm treated pine:

  • 800mm x 4
  • 430mm x 6

Back frame

70mm x 35mm treated pine:

  • 430mm x 3
  • 860mm x 2

3Timber for the roosting box

Front frame

70mm x 35mm treated pine:

  • 860mm x 2
  •  520mm x 1
  • 825mm x 2

Back frame

70mm x 35mm treated pine:

  • 860mm x 2
  • 790mm x 1
  • 920mm x 2
  • 520mm x 1

Door side

70mm x 35mm treated pine:

  • 800mm x 1
  • 805mm x 1
  • 835mm (mitred edge) x 1
  • 940mm (mitred edge) x 1

Door

70mm x 35mm treated pine:

  • 640mm x 2
  • 645mm x 2

Side without door

70mm x 35mm treated pine:

  • 800mm x 1
  • 805mm x 1
  • 940mm (mitred edge) x 1
  • 835mm (mitred edge) x 1
  • 860mm (mitred edge) x 1

Base

70mm x 35mm treated pine:

  • 800mm x 2
  • 930mm x 2

Roof

70mm x 35mm treated pine:

  • 1060mm studs x 4
  • 1070mm (two sides mitred) x 2

Batten material

 70mm x 35mm treated pine:

  • 1070mm x 1

Floor

70mm x 19mm treated pine decking boards:

  • Cut to size to fit the base

Ramp/nesting base

  • 1000mm x 260mm ply x 1

4Timber for nesting box

Base frame

70mm x 35mm treated pine:

  • 370mm x 2
  • 930mm x 3

Back wall

70mm x 35mm treated pine:

  • 860mm x 2
  • 370mm x 3

Side walls

70mm x 35mm treated pine:

  • 360mm x 2
  • 380mm (mitred edge) x 2
  • 370mm (mitred edge) x 2
  • 430mm (mitred edge) x 2

Roof

70mm x 35mm treated pine:

  • 860mm x 1
  • 345mm x 2
  • 245mm battens x 2
  • 860mm x 2

Garden

70mm x 35mm treated pine:

  • 1000mm x 2
  • 1200mm x 2

1200mm x 1000mm form ply base x 1

Battens

70mm x 35mm treated pine:

  • 1465mm x 2
  • 500mm x 2
  • 430mm x 2
  • 565mm x 2

Stops batten timber

50mm x 25mm treated pine:

  • 1480mm x 2

Palings sides

150mm x 12mm treated pine palings:

  • 750mm x 14
  • 1120mm x 10 

Back

150mm x 12mm treated pine palings:

  • 1000mm x 12

Front

150mm x 12mm treated pine palings:

  • 520mm x 3
  • 1000mm x 3

5Assemble the outdoor area

The chicken coop is made up of an outdoor area, a roosting box, a roosting box support, a nesting box, and a garden above the outdoor area. We're going to make the outdoor area first. To do this lay out the frame. Take two 1200mm pieces, these make the top and bottom of one side. Place two 930mm lengths at each end. The other two are studs, placed an equal distance apart. Screw the timber together using 75mm bugle screws. Repeat this process for the other side frame.

6Make the side supports

For this step you're making three frames, including the two side supports, which are the same. Take the four 800m pieces of timber, lay them out and screw together with the 75mm bugle screws. The 430mm lengths are the studs. Place them an equal distance apart and screw them in with the 75mm bugle screws. 

7Make the back support

Take the two pieces of 860mm timber and place two of the 430mm pieces at each end to make a rectangle. Screw them together with some 75mm bugle screws. Place the other 430mm piece of timber in the middle and fix it with bugle screws. 

8Make the roosting box, door side

Lay out the timber for the coop door side. The 940mm timber is for the front, the 835mm and 805mm are the studs and the 800mm is the back. This frame has a sloped roof, so the largest timber is for the front upright, smallest is at the back. Screw them together using 75mm bugle screws or the nail gun.

9Make the roosting box, non-door side

Repeat the process as for the door side, but attach an 860mm stud in the centre for support. The 940mm timber is for the front and the 800mm the back. This frame also has a sloped roof so the largest timber is for the front upright, smallest is at the back.

10Make the base of the roosting box

Lay out the two 800mm sides. Attach a 930mm piece of timber in the centre and two at each end. Screw them into place using 75mm bugle screws. To support the flooring, secure two 930mm studs, 70mm from both ends.

A wooden frame being assembled on a workbench by a Bunnings team member with a nail gun as part of a chicken coop

11Make the roosting box wall connect to nesting box

Lay out the top and bottom 860mm pieces of timber and the two side 920mm pieces and screw together using 75mm bugle screws. Install a 520mm stud in the centre of the top of the roosting box wall. Screw it into place. Then attach the 790mm door head. This will create an opening to the nesting box.

A wooden frame being assembled on a workbench by a Bunnings team member with a nail gun as part of a chicken coop

12Make the nesting box side walls

The nesting box has a sloped roof. Assemble the frame using the two 360mm pieces of timber, the two 380mm pieces with mitred edges, the two 370mm pieces with mitred edges and the two 430mm pieces with mitred edges. Screw together using 75mm bugle screws. Repeat the process for the other side wall.

A wooden frame for a chicken coop being nailed together by a Bunnings team member with a nail gun

13Make the nesting box base

Lay out the two 370mm pieces of timber and two 930mm pieces. Screw in the sides and two studs at each end. Fix a third 930mm stud 70mm from one end. This will support the front of the nesting box.

A wooden frame for a chicken coop being nailed together by a Bunnings team member with a nail gun

14Make the back of the nesting box

Lay out the two 860mm pieces of timber and the two 370mm pieces of timber for the nesting box. The two long pieces are the top and bottom. The 370mm pieces of timber are the uprights at each end and a support in the centre. Screw the nesting box together.

The back of the nesting box being attached to the rest of the chicken coop's wooden framework

15Assemble the roosting box supports

Assemble the roost box supports or base. This is to support the roosting box, which will sit on this. Use the nail gun to attach the side frames to the outside of the back frame.

Supports for the roosting box being nailed together by a Bunnings team member with a nail gun

16Attach the outdoor area

Use the nail gun to attach the side frames of the outdoor area to the side frames of the roosting box supports. Once the sides are secure, attach the front. You'll be making and attaching the door later.

17Attach the base of the roosting box to the roosting box support

Before attaching the base of the roosting box, fix off some extra studs to support the flooring. Secure two 930mm studs at 70mm from both ends. Then use the nail gun to attach the roosting box base to the support. 

The roosting box base being attached to the supports below by a Bunnings team member with a nail gun

18Attach the walls for the roosting coop

The sides of the roosting coop need to slope to allow for run-off. Attach the door side first with the nail gun. Fix it to whichever side works best for easy access and to suit the position. Attach the roosting box wall that connects to the nesting box. Fix it off using the nail gun. Then fix off the other side.

Two sides of a wooden chicken coop frame being nailed together by a Bunnings team member with a nail gun

19Assemble the walls to the entrance to the roosting coop

Take the two 820mm pieces of timber for the side and two pieces of 550mm timber for the top and bottom. Lay them out and then fix them together with the nail gun.

A wooden frame being assembled on a workbench by a Bunnings team member with a nail gun as part of a chicken coop

20Attach the entrance to the roosting coop

Use the nail gun to attach the entrance to the roosting coop. Be sure to leave enough room for the ramp to the outdoor area so that the chickens can enter the roosting box.

The entrance to the roosting coop being attacked to the wooden frame by a Bunnings team member

21Measure and mark the flooring for the roosting box

Measure and mark the decking boards for the flooring in the roosting box. Ours measured three pieces at 725mm near the ramp and the other six were 610mm for the entrance frame.

A length of timber being measured and marked for later cutting with a pencil and tape measure

22Cut and attach the flooring

Use the drop saw to cut the flooring to size. Fix them onto the floor using the nail gun.

A mitre saw being used to cut lengths of timber to size

23Attach the nesting box

Attach the base of the nesting box with the nail gun. Attach one side and then another side with the nail gun. Then attach the back frame of the nesting box with the nail gun.

Part of a wooden frame for a chicken coop being nailed into place by a Bunnings team member with a nail gun

24Attach the flooring to the roosting box

Use the nail gun to attach the pine decking to the floor of the roofing box. Use a piece of the decking, turned on its side as a spacer between the decking.

Wooden slats being nailed into place as a raised floor for a chicken coop with a nail gun, using a piece of scrap timber as a base

25Make the doors for the nesting box

You need to make two doors for the coop. One is attached to the outdoor area, the other is fitted to the roosting box. Ours measured 780mm for the top and bottom, the three pieces of 815mm timber are for the side and to attach the studs to. The two 345mm pieces of timber are for the studs. Lay out the timber for the frame. Fix off using the nailing gun.

A timber frame for a chicken coop being constructed using a nail gun

26Measure and mark the noggins for the hinges

Measure and mark the two noggins for the hinges. We placed ours 100mm up from the top and bottom on one side of the frame. Fix off the two noggins with the nail gun.

A timber plank being nailed to the side of a chicken coop by a Bunnings team member with a nail gun

27Wrap chicken wire around the door

Once the door frame is complete, wrap chicken wire around it, so that it sits on the outside of the frame. Fix off with the staple gun. Hammer in any staples that are sitting proud. Use tin snips to cut any excess wire. Make sure the wire is tucked around the frame and stapled securely.

Wire mesh being stapled down to a wooden frame as part of a chicken coop wall with a stapler

28Attach strap hinge fittings to the noggins

Once the wire is in place, attach strap hinge fittings to the noggins. Screw in using 50mm timber screws. Then fix the door by the hinges to the outdoor area of the coop with the 50mm timber screws. A handy tip when fixing the door is to prop the door into place using some timber off cuts.

A hinge being screwed into place on a wooden frame as part of a chicken coop hatch

29Attach the pad bolt

Use 50mm screws to attach the pad bolt to the door.

A slide lock being screwed into place on the door of a chicken coop by a Bunnings team member with a power drill

30Measure and cut the timber for the roosting box door frame.

You need to make the door so that it's a suitable size for the frame. Ours measured 720mm x 600mm. Lay the timber out and secure it with the nail gun.

A length of timber being measured and marked for later cutting with a pencil and tape measure

31Install a door head

Measure and mark 615mm from the base of the roosting box, and cut a stud above the head to suit.

The latch for a simple slide lock being fitted to the outside of the chicken coop

32Measure and cut the cladding

Measure, mark and cut the weatherboards to clad the door.

The side panels of a planter box being nailed into place on the roof of a chicken coop

33Attach the hinges

Attach the hinges to the door, making sure you leave a 20mm gap so that the door opens and closes. 

A hinge being screwed into place on a wooden frame as part of a chicken coop hatch

34Fix the stops

Measure and cut the batten timber for the stops. Cut them to fit the size of the coop. Attach them with the nail gun on the sides at the front and back of the coop and to the nesting box. The weatherboard cladding fits between these. The stops give a nice finish to the coop.

The ends of a roof being nailed into place by a Bunnings team member with a nail gun

35Cut the cladding to size

Measure, mark and cut the cladding. Our boards measured 750mm.

A circular saw being used to cut a plank of timber to size

36Attach the cladding

Attach the cladding to the outside of the side of the coop. Start at the base of the roosting box and continue up to the top. Use the set square to help measure a 20mm overlap for the boards to keep the coop water proof. Also, use a spirit level to make sure the boards are straight before securing with the fixing gun. To accommodate for the sloping roof, cut the top paling to size and attach with the fixing gun. Repeat this for the other side. Cut the palings to size and clad the nest box. Use any offcuts for the base of the nest box. Secure with the nail gun.

Panels of timber being nailed to a wooden wall frame for a chicken coop

37Cover the coop with chicken wire

Wrap the chicken wire around the outdoor area. Pull it tightly, tuck it in and staple it into place. Cut any excess wire with the tin snips. To prevent foxes, cats or any other predators from getting into the coop, wrap chicken wire underneath the coop as well.
Wire mesh being stapled down to a wooden ramp for a chicken coop

38Install the ramp

Build the ramp for the chickens out of ply, ours measured 260mm x 1000mm. Then staple chicken wire onto it for grip, making sure that it wraps around the ramp. Secure the ramp to the coop with the nail gun.

The ramp up to a raised level of a chicken coop being nailed down by a Bunnings team member with a nail gun

39Assemble the frame for the roof

Take the two 1070mm mitred pieces of timber, these are for the sides of the roof. The four 1060mm pieces are for the studs. Fix two studs at each end. One of the end studs sits on its side, the others are flat.  These are important as fixing points for the mini orb roof.

A frame for a chicken coop assembled out of timber

40Fix the frame onto the roof

Fix the frame onto the roof with the nail gun. Make sure the frame has an even amount of overhang at each end.

A roof frame being lowered onto a chicken coop by a Bunnings team member

41Measure and mark the mini orb

Once the frame is fixed, measure its inside measurements. Transfer these to the mini orb. Use the grinder to cut the mini orb. Use appropriate safety equipment when using the grinder.

Corrugated iron being measured and marked for cutting with a pencil and tape measure

42Secure the mini orb

Place the mini orb into place onto the studs on the roof. 

Corrugated iron being laid out over a roof frame by a Bunnings team member

43Fix the mini orb in place

Cut the batten timber to measure so that it fits into the front and back of the coop. Place the battens on top of the mini orb and secure them with the 50mm screws and the nail gun. You will repeat this process for the roof of the nesting box.

A corrugated iron roof being fitted to a chicken coop by a Bunnings team member, complete with leaf catcher

44Make the lid for the nesting box

Layout the frame for the nesting box lid with the two pieces of 960mm timber and two pieces of 200mm timber. Fix the smaller timber inside the longer pieces of timber with the nail gun.

Loose hay being added to a raised area of a chicken coop via the access hatch, while a chicken inside looks on

45Attach the lid to the nesting box

Once the frame is completed. Place it on the nesting box. Measure and mark for the hinges. Attach these 100mm in from each end. Fix into place using 30mm screws. Then attach the lid to the nesting box. If you want to completely waterproof the nesting box, attach a rubber strip between the lid and the roosting box.

A wooden access hatch being built into the side of a chicken coop by a Bunnings team member

46Make the frame for the rooftop garden

 Cut the timber for the rooftop garden to fit above the outdoor area. Ours measured two pieces at 1005mm and two pieces at 1130mm. We ripped one piece of timber removing 25mm so the timber width measured 115mm. 

An empty planter box positioned on the roof of a chicken coop, lined across the bottom with black plastic

47Install the garden

To create fall and allow for drainage in the coop garden, fix an offcut of roofing batten or bead to one side of the coop garden. Attach it to the inside. Once the bead is in place, slide in the form ply base. Attach the final side of the garden bed.

A homemade chicken coop containing a number of chickens, with a planter box on the roof

48Job done

You can paint or stain your chicken coop but we've left ours raw. Now all you need to do is put some straw in the nesting box and fill the garden bed with soil and flowers. Put the chickens in their coop and before you know it you'll be enjoying fresh eggs for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

A chicken coop in a high fenced backyard, with mesh walls and two chickens inside, a planter box on the roof and a ramp leading up to a raised nest area

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Health & Safety

Asbestos, lead-based paints and copper chromium arsenic (CCA) treated timber are health hazards you need to look out for when renovating older homes. These substances can easily be disturbed when renovating and exposure to them can cause a range of life-threatening diseases and conditions including cancer. For information on the dangers of asbestos, lead-based paint and CCA treated timber and tips for dealing with these materials contact your local council's Environmental Health Officer or visit our Health & Safety page.

When following our advice in our D.I.Y. videos, make sure you use all equipment, including PPE, safely by following the manufacturer’s instructions. Check that the equipment is suitable for the task and that PPE fits properly. If you are unsure, hire an expert to do the job or talk to a Bunnings Team Member.