Full information, current pricing etc. see: Lenham 12 Chicken House from Foresham Cottage Arks
With a floor space of 13 sq ft (1.21 M2) and 3 roosting bars, they suggest 12 medium hens or 6 to 8 large fowl which seems right.
Design & Security
Apart from the construction and material quality, the attractive design makes it a very popular choice for back garden chicken keepers with larger numbers of hens. The robust construction and locking systems gives total security to the birds at night if Mr Fox comes to call.
As there is no integrated run, you will need to have the coop in a secure run unless you’re lucky enough to live in an area without foxes which is unlikely nowadays. If the fox breaks through the fencing, then they will be safe at night though in the house.
It’s an appealing design that will grace any garden. As an optional extra the Lenham hen house can be mounted on Victorian-style cast iron wheels, making it easier to move and giving it a unique look.
The use of 3 roosting bars at two heights makes efficient use of the space although only one bar is above the nest box height. The top bar can be positioned to the centre or either side as preferred
The Lenham chicken coop comes with 3 nest boxes accessible from outside the coop.
One thing that can be a problem is the nest boxes are on the same level as the lower roosting bars. This means the birds have a tendency to spend the night in the nest box. Hens produce much of their droppings at night as they digest their food so the nest box can get filthy, which dirties the eggs.
You can close off the nest box at night with a shutter but then you need to remember to open it again in the morning. Still, after a couple of weeks they’re usually trained to the perch and don’t bother sleeping in the nest boxes even if it’s left open.
Adequate draft-free ventilation is provided by a number or air vents.
Cleaning The Coop
There’s great access to the interior with the removable sides which makes cleaning a lot easier than many other coops. One feature I would like to have seen is a removable droppings board which some modern coops incorporate.
Still some old newspaper and shavings will make the job fairly easy or I suppose you could even build a droppings board from plywood.
The roosting bars are removable which makes thorough cleaning easier and coping with a red mite infestation if it happens.
The nest boxes can be removed which really helps access for cleaning.
The quality is first class and, properly cared for, this will last many years. Some minor gripes about the nest box and cleaning aside, an ideal coop for urban or cottage gardens where the owner wants more hens than the famous ark will house.
It isn’t a cheap coop, running around £550 at time of writing, but it is very good value for money being both practical, long-lasting and attractive. More information, video etc. can be found on their web page.
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