Backyard Chickens and Creative Coops

There are so many reasons to keep backyard chickens, which is why so many people are jumping on the backyard chicken train! From the country to the suburbs to tiny city yards, folks are building creative coops for their feathered friends.

Why keep backyard chickens? Chickens do a lot of great stuff: eat yard waste and vegetable scraps; fertilize the soil; control garden weeds and bugs; and of course, produce fresh eggs.

Homeowners use chickens to weed their yards by placing the chickens in what is known as a "chicken tractor". A chicken tractor is a movable enclosure that is typically made from a frame and chicken wire. The chickens can graze freely inside the chicken tractor. If you need to clear a weeded area, just move the chicken tractor to the weeded area, and let the chickens feast!

kusine/Flickr Creative Commons

These are some backyard beauties in a super cute lime green chicken coop with an attached chicken run. Chickens love to eat yard scraps and weeds. They seem to be enjoying their lunch!

jessicareeder/Flickr Creative Commons

I'm loving this portable A-frame chicken tractor. It's a clever design because it includes a shaded place for the chickens to roost, as well as an open area for grazing. Notice the difference between the area next to the tractor that the chickens grazed previously, and the tall grass where they are currently feeding.

Baugher Webmaster Services/Flickr Creative Commons

Here's a really basic chicken run and coop for backyard chickens. Like many backyard coops with attached chicken runs, this one has a hatch door which the birds can enter and exit at will. It's not fancy, but it works.

Blind Robert/Flickr Creative Commons

A woman tends a nice big chicken tractor, made of sheet aluminum, accompanied by another of her animal friends -- a free range goat.

La.Catholique/Flickr Creative Commons

This is a quite a nice looking modern chicken coop, built by a carpenter in Seattle. It coordinates with the contemporary architecture of the neighborhood where it is located.

Jessica Cramer@ Designers Sweet Spot/

Here's another very cute A-frame chicken tractor with a built-in roosting area. These backyard chickens demonstrate that natural weed control comes with fresh eggs!

Old World Garden Farms/

This is the Cadillac of chicken coops. Check out the roof work! How many chicken coops have you seen with asphalt shingle roofing? With so much room to roost and roam, these must be happy chickies!


+Tip: Beyond Chickens: Poultry to Keep at Home

+Tip: Raising Hens at Home

+Tip: Raising Goats in the City

Updated November 21, 2018.

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