Design is a funny word. Some people think design means how it looks. But of course, if you dig deeper, it's really how it works.
-- Steve Jobs
Table of Contents
- Formex Snap Lock Chicken Coop -- Ultimate Safety, Security, Tested To Destruction, And Sooo Easy To Clean
- What wood is best for chicken coops?
- Easy Maintenance
- How Do I Clean the Nesting Boxes?
- What do you line a snap lock chicken coop with?
- The snap lock chicken coop kit is elevated
- Effortless Assembly
- Safe and Secure
- What is the best chicken coop to buy?
Formex Snap Lock Chicken Coop -- Ultimate Safety, Security, Tested To Destruction, And Sooo Easy To Clean
Design is a funny word. Some people think design means how it looks. But of course, if you dig deeper, it's really how it works. -- Steve Jobs
What to look for when deciding on the best chicken coop kits? It's important to you because it's going to make the difference between a great investment that will last your chickens a lifetime and money sunk down a deep hole. There is a huge choice of products on the market so we broke it down into the basics:
- Easy to assemble
- At Least One Nest Box
- Easy to Clean
- Removable tray
- Good Ventilation
- No wire
- Comes In Kit Form
Having done much research I finally decided on the Formex Snap Lock Chicken coop. This chicken coop comes in two different sizes, and the one I will be talking about today is the smaller chicken coop which costs about $518, not cheap but guaranteed to last you a lifetime.
This particular snap lock chicken coop occupies 42 x 39 x 29 inches of space, making it pretty compact. It would fit in a small backyard, especially if you are planning to free-range your flock, if not, you need to factor in the size of your enclosure or run. Ideally, this can hold up to 2 to 3 large breed hens like Rhode Island Reds and about 4 to 6 Bantams.
Let us get into the details as to why this could be the best chicken coop kit for your girls.
What wood is best for chicken coops?
The plastic used by the manufacturer comes with multiple advantages. One that truly stands out is that it does not harbor pathogenic bacteria that can harm your hens. With regular wooden coops, you can't do a thorough clean-up since the wood is quite hard to disinfect.
Another problem with wooden coops is the possibility of mite infestation. Plastic will not attract any mites that can harm your flock, keeping them safe and secure.
The Formex Snap Lock Chicken coop is easy to maintain. It's accessible from the roof and has a clean-out door on the side. This allows you to breeze through the coop in minutes for a quick clean up.
How Do I Clean the Nesting Boxes?
You also have easy access to the nesting boxes through a top hutch for easy egg collection and cleaning.
What do you line a snap lock chicken coop with?
The best material to line a chicken coop provides a secure foundation for chickens' legs and feet, a soft landing for eggs, a way to gather droppings quickly and the ability to easily clean your birds' housing. The materials you chose to line your removable tray with don't have to be expensive, for example, you may run a business from home that creates enough shredded paper to do the job or you might know a tree surgeon who's more then happy to produce you with free wood shavings. There is a list of about 7 that are widely used:
Straw and Hay
A sweet, earthy smell and springy texture.
Pine shavings dry fast, are inexpensive and don't break down quickly, making them an ideal bedding material. The mild pine scent is inviting too.
There's much debate as to the strong aromatic nature of cedar shavings and their effects on chickens' delicate respiratory systems, and it seems the jury is still out. To play it safe, I recommend avoiding the use of cedar shavings with very young chicks confined to a brooder, only use with mature chickens and plenty of ventilation.
While expensive initially, compared to the alternatives listed here, sand as removable bedding in the chicken coop need only be replaced once or twice a year if diligently cleaned and contained.
Sand dries very quickly and can be turned over with a rake to employ the deep-litter method or scooped with a cat litter scooper when used in small coops. Sand is the flooring material of choice for outdoor runs that are exposed to the elements frequently: It doesn't break down, it dries fast and it doubles as a great material for dust baths. Your chickens will love it, as mine do. Be sure to use builder's sand (found at home-improvement stores), as sandbox sand is too fine and tends to clump.
A viable chicken snap lock chicken coop bedding option, but, as materials go, they have a few disadvantages. Clippings tend to retain moisture and break down quickly. They also dry, shrink and smell. If you opt for grass clippings in the chicken coop, be sure they come from a yard that hasn't been sprayed with pesticides, fungicides, herbicides or other chemicals.
An option only if the leaves are finely shredded so they dry quickly and are easily removable. Whole leaves take a long time to break down and are susceptible to harboring moisture, sticking together and matting. Wet leaves make a slippery surface that could lead to splayed legs or bumblefoot, especially in younger, growing birds.
Materials such as shredded newspaper or shredded office paper, are options. While they are free, use them with caution. Ink can be toxic to chickens, and office paper is heavily processed and treated. Glossy paper---the kind found in magazines and fliers---also contains a large amount of ink and can create a matted and/or slippery surface.
The snap lock chicken coop kit is elevated
One thing customers rave about this particular brand is how easy it is to assemble. While it is true that you don't need an A+ in woodshop to assemble a coop kit, the Formex Snap-Lock coop need less effort! You don't need any tools to put the coop together, as the name says, you just need to snap and lock the parts together.
Safe and Secure
What is the best chicken coop to buy?
Due to the good quality of the plastic, your hens are completely safe within the confines of the coop. It comes with a heavy-duty plastic base that prevents predators from digging under and reaching your hens. It also comes with latches on all the access points which you can easily lock at night.
The coop does not come with any additional accessories or freebies but what the manufacturer offers is a 10-year guarantee!
Now, there have been many questions regarding ventilation and the very material used for the coop. Since the material is plastic, there may be some warping in the material due to extreme weather conditions. It doesn't seem to go well with hot conditions, and drastic temperature shifts. But customers have commended the coop for holding up during winter.
At first glance, you would think that the coop would be poorly ventilated, but there are actually air vents around the coop that allow the hot air to escape and cool air to circulate. Keeping your birds comfortable even on warm days.
The only issue that we see with this particular coop is the lack of a run. But this will be a non-issue if you let your birds free range during the day, or build your own enclosure for a minimal cost. You may also find small runs to buy along with this particular model.
Purchasing the Formex Snap-Lock coop comes with it's own sets of pros and cons, albeit the advantages monumentally outweighs the disadvantages. For less than $600 you are not only buying your birds a part-time living space, you are getting them a lifetime home.