The Crew and the Coop.

I thought I would take this time and dedicate a post to the beginning of the Kuntry Klucker Crew. I will also combine this post with the construction of their coop. I have received many comments on Facebook and other social media sites inquiring about our blueprints or plans that we used build their digs. To tell you the truth, we had no plans or blue prints. We also did not use a kit, we simply researched on what they needed, got the supplies and built what we could.

But first the crew. I mentioned in another post that the girls arrived via the mail in a small box. I am not kidding, they really did arrive in a small box, it was the cutest things I ever saw. I have never ordered chicks before, so this was a new one for me. I have ordered live plants via the mail that were delivered to my door, but never chicks. Below is a pic of their transportation digs.


It was a cold morning when they arrived. I could not wait to get the contents of the peeping box unpacked and transfered into their warm brooder.

After bring them inside I took them out of the box one by one, showed them their food and water then set them down softly into their brooder. Immediatly they began to eat, drink, and warm themselves under the heat lamp. They scratched, peeped, and took in their surroundings, and thus our journey began.

My brooder was origionally a large , grey, rubber made tote, which did not last long. As they grew, so did their digs. Instead of getting a new brooder I just added to it as they needed.


So as one living space got too small, I would cut hole in the box and attach on another box. By the time it was all said and done they had a network of several boxes to navigate through. It was almost like a brooder palace by the time I attached the final box.

They pretty much had a house and floor plan complete with rooms. Lets see, there was the room (box) with the food and water (kitchen), the room (box) with the heat lamp (lets call that the living room), and a room (box) for gathering (we can call that the recreation room). The brooder was quite a network of boxes. They seemed to navigate it well and had lots of fun scratching in all the shavings and running throughout their digs. The brooder days were fun, but they could not stay in there forever. So, while they were growing and discovering, we were busy building their new home in the backyard.

Our coop and pen are pretty much a very simple design. We have a penthouse coop, or a coop that is raised off the ground by about 2 feet. This keeps ground water from seeping into the coop and rodents from chewing into the coop or making a nest under it. I like this design, especially during seasons when we seem to get a lot of rain. Their pen has flooded several times and each time I am so glad they were clean and dry in their coop.

Once the coop was built, we then attached the pen.  The pen is just a simple rafter design which we attached to the coop. After we assembled all the wood forming the roof and frame, we then enclosed the whole structure with hardware cloth and galvanized metal fencing. This protects the girls from predators and also keeps them from escaping out of the pen. The roof of the pen also has metal fencing, this is to keep anything from flying or dropping into the pen. They girls are very secure in their pen. When I am not home they stay safe and dry in their pen. I will also confine them to their pen if there is an unusual amount of hawk or other arial bird of prey activity. We have had several occasions where I had to keep them in the pen to discourage a scouting hawk or two. The girls seem to take it in stride, they know they are safe in their house.

For the roof we just use a large tarp. This provides them shade and of course protection from the rain and other elements. Since the top of the pen has metal fencing, we did not need to add the extra expense of building an actually roof. The tarp does the job well. We replace it every other year or so to keep it in good condition. It does start to ware out after a few years. They are fairly cheap and very durable. This design meets both our budget and needs of the girls.

After we had the pen built and attached to the coop, it was time to paint and decorate. I chose to paint their coop and pen door a barn red. I then painted the trim white. I knew from the beginning when we decided to have chickens that I wanted an Americana theme for their home. It has been a work in progress and has morphed as the years have gone by. It took some time find the decorations and accents that I wanted for their home. After several years I finally had the complete project. I repaint the coop about ever other year. I do this to keep the wood in good condition and protected from the elements. We change out screws and wood in the pen as needed.

The design for their front door is our unique take on allowing them access to the backyard. At the bottom of the large door leading into the pen you see a small pet door. We call this the “chicken door”, this allows us to let them out of their pen without having to keep the large human size door open. I do this to discourage birds and other arial prey from flying into the pen. If there is a hawk scare the girls will run back to their pen and find safely there because the hawk cannot follow them in. Additionally, we cut out a heart window at their level to allow them to see out the door.

This was my husbands idea and by far my favorite design feature of their home. I think it is just the cutest thing to see them peering at me as I make my way to see them. When I unlock the latch to let them out, I usually get a willing head to assist me in working the lock. The door just lifts up and latches onto the large pen door to keep it open.


That is all I have for now. If you have any questions about our coop that you would like an answer to, please post in the comments. As always, thanks for following our adventures.

~The Kuntry Klucker Crew.~



Deck the Coop.


The girls and I had a little fun today as we decorated their digs today for the holidays. They were introducted to holiday decorations for the first time.

The girls get excited whenever I come to the coop carrying something. They assume I am brining a yummy treat for them to devour. I entere the backyard with my hands full of decorations to deck out their coop with. The flock was a bit mystified with these new and strange treats. One by one they approached, pecked at the bows and finally decided that they did not taste as good as they looked. Anyhow, after a few nasty looks from the gang, they realized that I was up to something else fun. Thus, the onlookers began to assemble.

This is the first year that I decorated their coop with lights. I usually put a wreath on their door and a stocking for Santa to fill with treats. This year I dedide to pimp up the coop decorations with some exterior illumination. Who doen’t love a adorable chicken coop decorated with a bit of holiday flair.

The flock reaction to the light strand when it lit up was quite entertaining. I stretched the lights out on the ground, working to keep the light strand tangle free as I decked to coop. While I momentairly stepped away to plug in the lights, the flock issued a serious of inspections. When I plugged the strand in, they were startled by the sudden illumination. This is their first experience with Christmas lights so we will see how they take to them.


Roy as always is not impressed. Even a good spring coop cleaning is something that he actively protests with a serenade of crowing. He is not a fan of having his digs messed with. Consequently he is not a fan of decoration day. Afterwords, he inspected and decided that the lights were not a threat, thus acceptable. His expression in the pic is just precious, he is a character like none other. The girls however are cool with the festive decor like any women would be.


The coop is decked out and ready for Santa. Last year Santa brought them a bag of knock out scratch and a package of meal worms. We will see what Santa leave for them this year. Santa has a soft spot for chickens.

The Girls want to wish everyone a Merry Kluck-mas and an Egg-celent New Year!!

As always, thanks for reading. Till next time, keep on crowing.

Roy (Buff Orpington Rooster) standing in front of the snowman guarding the coop.

~ The Kuntry Klucker Crew ~

A Kuntry Klucker Christmas

snow 2014

Hey there again, the girls and I have a winter’s tale to share.

Last year we had the most snow that I have ever seen here in these hills in about 10 or so years. We were battered with two ice storms then several snow storms all within a span of a few weeks. When it was all said and done, we had an accumulation of 12 inches of snow on the ground. Now most people know that farm animals are all weather, not much seems to bother them. Well for my pampered poultry, this was not the case. You see, I found out that my girls hate snow. They are scared to death of it. The white lava might as well be an enemy that needs immediate extermination. I make sure the they are protected from predators in both their coop and pen. But snow, I can do nothing about. So, after a few days of being cooped up (quite literally), I decided to try to get them out of their coop and pen for some fresh air. The result was as funny as can be.

higher ground

First, after I plowed my way to the coop, I had to convince the girls that the snow was not going to kill them. Upon getting to the coop I found this, Miss Betsy trying to get as far away from the nemesis white stuff as possible. She would not even put her pampered pedies on the pen floor, which was dry except for the parts near the edges where the snow had drifted in.

Next, I had to lure them out with their favorite treat. Scratch! Chicken scratch is a treat from the gods, they love this stuff. They practically fall over each other when I come out the the coop with a cup full of their choice eats.

tasting the snow

Miss Bossy was our brave taker, she cautiously approached her favorite treat laying in the dreaded white stuff. As the others watched carefully to make sure that it was not going to kill her. Eventually they too ever so cautiously started to approach.

no further

After some time the rest of the gang got the idea that the white stuff was not a complete threat. The power of the scratch was just too strong.  The girls started coming out one by one. They are still not too sure about the stuff, so for a while they pecked at it and scratched at it, finally deeming it safe to take the plunge.

deep snow

The sole brave taker again was Miss Bossy who took the plunge, wading in snow that covered her legs. If you have ever seen a chicken attempt to walk in deep snow, it is quite a funny sight. So while the girls are taking the snow in stride, Roy on the other hand is thoroughly convinced that he needs to somehow exterminate the white stuff. Since he is terrified of the white stuff, he decided that a decent growing was in order.

brave roy

For the first day, this was as brave as Roy got. He stood in the door way and restlessly crowed at the white stuff. After, he finally decided that his efforts were to no avail, finally accepting defeat. He stayed in the pen the rest of the day sulking. After all tomorrow is a new day, right? Well…

More snow fell the following night, the girls decided they had enough of the white stuff and refused to come out of the pen. So I decided to plow paths for them to walk on in the backyard. Apparently they do not like the feel of the snow on their feet. Come to think about it, I don’t think I would like it either. So with my snow shovel in hand, I cleared several paths for the girls to walk on. I had no idea at the time, this turned out to be the funniest thing ever.

You see, once I cleaned them a few paths, they would only go as far as the path would take them. In other words, when the path ends the chickens stopped. On the heels of that, I plowed them a maze in the backyard. It was the funniest thing ever, I still regret not getting a video of the girls working the backyard maze. However, I did snap a few pics that day, below are pics of the girls trying to figure out how to navigate the maze in the backyard.

I will have to say they failed miserably. They could not understand why they could not get back to the coop once they got far into the maze. They would take a path and get stuck because it lead nowhere. Since they refused to walk in the snow, the flock botted necked at a dead end. After a while to help them out, I put a trail of scratch on the paths that lead back to the coop. The flock readily accepted the offer. It event was an educational experiment in testing the my flockss ability to learn, remember, and problem solve.

We will see what the rest of the winter brings. If we get more snow I will be prepared again to plow them a maze to solve.  When presented with fresh snow some people build snowmen, others conduct experiments on the mental capacities of a flock of backyard chickens. However, we could not resist the urge to build a snowman.

snowman 2015

Thanks for reading. We wish everyone an Merry Kluckmas and an Egg-celent New Year.

Till next time, keep on crowing.



~ The Kuntry Klucker Crew ~

Welcome to the Coop.

Love window

Hi, well I guess I should introduce myself and give you a bit of info on the purpose of this blog. My name is Noelle, I am a backyard chicken keeper. I started my journey about 5 years ago when I wanted some chickens to help me on my hobby farm. Most people when they think of chickens, think of eggs. Well, that is definitely a plus of having your own hens in your backyard. However, I was thinking of them more of composers and garden associates.


Chickens make the best compost (poop) in their coop all winter long, which I then spread on my gardens in early spring. The plants love their coop shavings and in return give me a nice yield. But, even better, chickens make great exterminators, they eat just about anything that flies, craws, or hops in the backyard. I don’t have to use all the dangerous pesticides that I normally would because I have my feathered exterminators to do that for me. Most of all, they are my best friends in the backyard. I cannot work in the garden with out one of my girls looking for any grubs that I might have uncovered. They are great friends to have when I work in the garden. Additionally, they are attractive yard ornaments as they go about their days work of eating bugs, tilling, and clucking with glee when they find something delicious.

In this blog, I plan to share with you the joy of keeping chickens. When I tell people that I have chickens as pets, I get lots of different responses. Some think I am crazy to keep chickens as pets. Chickens are mostly viewed as live stock, void of all compassion and emotion. I am here to say put that myth to bed. I sometimes get response of curiosity. When people think about chickens the image of poor sad looking things in cages come to mind. They do not think of chickens as being attractive or even fun. I too will dispel the myth that chickens cannot be fun loving pets. But before I go to far I should probably introduce the flock and explain the name behind my blog.

Our coop is called The Kuntry Klucker. I chose this spelling because I thought it was fun and different. I like to be original and this name just fit. We live in the country and of course there is lots of “klucking” going on. So nope, I did not misspell the name of my blog, the spelling was intentional.

The gang consists of 12 hens and 1 Rooster named Roy. Roy is a character, he loves figs, spaghetti, and corn. I am the only one who can pick him up. Everyone else he deems as an enemy that must be exterminated. This even includes my own family members. He has mellowed out some as the years have passed, but he has never attacked anyone. He perfer to crow at them and pretend that he is a fearsome bird.

He is really the sweetest rooster I have ever known. I am not sure what I would do without him. I love to wake up in the morning and listen to him greet the dawn. He runs like clock work, an alarm clock that never goes out of power or relies on batteries. I never knew the joy of roosters till I had him. He is the king of the backyard.

Now for the girls. I have a dozen hens which I affectionally call “my girls”. We have…

Miss Bossie (The alpha hen) I will get to more of her later

Miss Katie (The forever broody mama) more on her later too

Miss Sweet Pea (The prize personality hen) more on her later too

Miss Little bit

Miss Little Pea

Miss Lady

Miss Betsy

Miss Piggy (The hungriest Hen) she is always eating

Miss Liberty

Miss Lady Bug

Miss Tennessee

Miss Lucy Goosie

Now most people ask me how I tell them all apart. Well, I have a little secret. I dress my hens up, that is right, they all wear the latest in Hen Fashions. I do this because it protects their back from the rooster but has the added side effect of a name tag.

Yep, that is right my girls wear dresses!! They love their outfits and protest when I take them off for washing. They each have their own individual personalities, I try to match the outfit to it. For example, here is Miss Sweet Pea, she is the smallest of all the hens, and the sweetest. However, she is also a flight risk. You see, she is so light that if we get a big gust of wind it is not uncommon for her to ride the wind over my 6 foot wood privacy fence. I have to make sure she stays in the pen on really windy days or days when we have severe weather, because she will ride the wind. So her outfit always has butterflies because she is a free spirit.

Pea in the garden

Now Miss Katie, she is my perpetual momma hen. She loves sitting on egg and hatching babies. She has hatched two clutches for me. She is the best momma and has earned her name as the Momma Hen. She is blind in one eye, has been since hatch, but that does not stop her.

Then we have Miss Bossie, she is the alpha hen. This means she is at the top of the pecking order directly under Roy. I am sure you have head the term “pecking order”. Chickens are very social animals and have a rigid social structure. Every individual knows their place within the hierarchy. Members in a flock compete for their position and must hang on to it. Miss Bossie has made the climbe to the top of the hen ranks. She is also my bad girl, in a funny sense. She is my escape artist, my “hen-didi”. If there is a breach in the coop security, she will find it. But she is also my helper, I use her to make their coop safer by securing up escape routs. For that reason, she has skulls on her outfit. There is one outlaw in every barnyard, she is ours.


I have many more chicken adventures to share, I will stop here. It has occurred to me that it is snack time. I am running a bit late, Roy is letting me know with his constant calling (crowing) for treats. Speaking of treats, that is a subject of much entertainment, chickens love treats. I will post about that next time.

Till next time take care, and keep on crowing. The girls and I will be back soon!!

The Kuntry Klucker Crew