A few weeks ago at a party I met a terribly interesting couple who built a geodesic dome chicken coop to house their chickens. What I was curious to know was did the chicken coop smell? Every other chicken coop I had been near really smelled bad. Simon and Kathleen invited me to check out their coop in person, which I did the next day. And guess what? The coop simply did not smell, at all. Seems like the deciding factor is having enough room for the chickens to move around. Click on photos for a larger view.
Simon has even created a live webstream for his chicken coop which can be accessed at http://nakedchicksontheinternet.com, so you can see these happy chickens for yourself.
Regarding maintenance, every once in a while Simon puts in a new bale of hay. Within a day or so the chickens have so pecked at the hay that they’ve managed to spread it out all over the floor of the dome. Simon puts plastic easter eggs in the coop where he wants the chickens to get the hint and lay eggs. As I recall he gets around a dozen a day.
Simon and Kathleen have other birds living in their chicken coop as well, though they pretty much stick to the heights:
The chickens have been known to fly up to some of these perches. Did you know that chickens can fly? News to me. Here is my friend C with some of chickens by their roosts.
And here is the entrance to the geodesic dome, a simple plastic storage shed.
Simon is a self-described geek with a fun side business of selling science toys that he invents. His home website is http://birdfarm.org/. He has posted some descriptions of the materials needed to build a coop like this in his aviary plans. One of the things that really surprised me about the construction is that although it looks like it is barely strung together, the dome is incredibly stable and strong. When I pushed and pulled on it it didn’t budge a bit.
On a side note, Simon and Kathleen have also built what they call their “Ewok Village” on their property. A rope bridge helps you get there:
Can you imagine having a treehouse like this in your backyard? Kid heaven.
Thanks Simon and Kathleen for the terrific tour!