23 March 2011

Review: Art of the Chicken Coop by Chris Gleason

The Book:

Chickens need a coop, and what better way to show your love than building one?  In The Art of the Chicken Coop, seven unique coops are presented with detailed building instructions, along with an additional gallery for more inspiration for your ideal coop.  With additional information from other chicken owners, the lessons to creating a place for your chickens starts here.



The Yarn:

When I saw this book sitting in the NetGalley listings, I knew I had to scoop it up.  I dream about having chickens one day, and the idea of being able to construct my own coop seems daunting.  Gleason's book helps to show anyone how to create sturdy coops from materials people may already have or can acquire easily.  Chris Gleason is a known DIY author on woodworking who deals with recycled materials, but the materials lists presented for each coop are clearly able to be gleaned from any large store you can buy construction materials.  Bright, colorful, step-by-step photos along the way assist in making sure that the instructions can be followed as much visually as in print.

I liked the additional information such as how to build chicken runs (attached to the coops or not) or how to resize the coops based on a standard 2sf (square feet) per additional bird.   Little informational bits such as chicken breeds and recipes are scattered throughout the book.   At the end are three profiles of "chicken keepers", who outline why they keep chickens and how.  All three are based in Salt Lake City, Utah, which while showing that even urban backyard areas can support raising chickens, they don't quite give as diverse a look at urban poultry keeping as I would like to see.

The Art of the Chicken Coop is not as expansive a collection of construction plans as probably exists in other titles on the market.  However the vivid photographs, construction techniques and focus on reused materials make this good for those looking for a budget-conscious DIY book.

The Ink:

Title:  The Art of the Chicken Coop
Author:  Chris Gleason
Publisher: Fox Chapel Publishing
Date: June 2011
Read: NetGalley ebook