And all of them are open for visitors this weekend if you want to take a peek!
It’s not a springtime Parade of Homes. It’s the third-annual 2012 Take a Peak Chicken Coop Tour.
This weekend, about 20 coops from Black Forest to Manitou Springs to downtown Colorado Springs will be open for viewing.
Anyone interested in raising chickens is invited to take the free, self-guided tour and learn how to start your own coop.
The tour was the idea of “chickenman” John Conner.
“A couple ladies I worked with got interested in keeping chickens and came over and saw my coop,” John said. “Then they said they’d like to see more.”
So he arranged for a dozen or so folks with chickens to allow folks to see their coops. That was 2010.
And that was with mininal advertising.
This year John’s not sure what to expect. He hopes people will learn how easy it is to raise chickens.
“They are pets that give you breakfast,” John said with a laugh.
He started raising them about five years ago and now has five birds. He said they are quiet and no more work than a big dog.
“You have to clean up after them and feed them,” he said. “But they don’t go outside and start barking. They may cluck, but you won’t hear them.”
John created a CoopTourDirectory_2012_draft_2 for tour. It’s 22 pages of photos and tips about raising chickens.
I was intrigued at elaborate coops some build.
John’s coop, at his Shooks Run neighborhood home, is solar-powered with panels on the roof.
Another fellow made his coop out of “cob.”
“Basically, it’s mud and straw,” John said. “And tree limbs and things.”
Then there’s a coop in Black Forest on wheels.
Coops on the tour range from basic plywood to elaborate structures disguised as small cottages or playhouses.
There are a few rules for tour-goers. Don’t bring pets. Don’t scare the chickens. And some coops will only be open for limited times during the weekend.
John also provides information on Colorado Springs codes. For example, residents can have 10 chickens but no roosters in the city. And chicken coop poop must be picked up every few days and kept in a sealed container.
A pet that gives you breakfast, huh? My dog won’t even get me the morning paper!