Practical Coop Design

I was recently asked where to find a plastic or steel coop in Ontario.  The Eglu is very popular, but is not available for delivery here, and since I had mentioned that wood is almost impossible to clean properly, the wooden coop designs available online were not ideal. 

My solution is one that has been very popular lately on professional egg farms: plastic covered plywood.  Many farmers who are building or retooling their barns use this product to create a waterproof, disinfectable surface for the inside of the barn.  A couple of places to find this stuff in Ontario (I found them on a quick search, and don’t recommend any of these companies….they can just act a starting point for interested people.) are , and

This is what the inside of a barn looks like with the plastic plywood for walls

I would use the plastic coated plywood on any surface that is exposed to the hens….ie the inside of the coop, inside of the nest boxes, etc….any surface that you would like to be able to clean and disinfect well.  The exterior of he coop can be anything that fits your style and decor….backyard coops can be as elaborate and decorative as you want them to be!!

This material is not cheap, and it is heavy, which will mean you need to make sure you build the coop sturdily, but it makes for a great finished product.  The other advantage of something like this, as opposed to a product like the Eglu is that you can design it to the number of hens you want to house, the shape of your space, etc.

Other recycled plastic products are also available for construction, but some of them are less than ideal, since they are designed to mimic real wood, and have some of the problems of real wood.  They are not porous like wood, and as such are MUCH more cleanable, but my feeling is that if you are going to make the investment, you should get the best you can, and that would be the smoothest material you can find.

Recycled plastic boards are not as good, since they are not smooth, and are therefore harder to clean....SHINY = EASY TO CLEAN!!

I hope this helps, and welcome any comments or questions.

Mike the Chicken Vet


One response to “Practical Coop Design

  1. Thanks so much. This really helps.

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