"CASA DE POLLO" -- Beautiful & Functional Dream Chicken Coop with atttached Run
Welcome to my chicken coop: "Casa De Pollo"!
This is a very beautiful and very functional chicken coop with attached run that my husband made for me (along with assistance from me and our teenage son) based on what I came up with for my "dream chicken coop".
Our chicken journey started in March of 2015 when the local feed stores had adorable little pullets for sale!
I just HAD to have chickens and of course needed a coop. But not just "any coop". I wanted a chicken coop that would be beautiful, not LOOK like a chicken coop, and that would survive our Colorado winters, rain, snow and wind, and also be extremely functional. I only wanted to do it once and to do it right!
We looked at prefab kits and none of the store-sold chicken coops fit my needs and didn't seem sturdy enough. Custom made large coops were very expensive and again, didn't meet all my needs and desires.
My husband said "I can make you one" -- so after much thought and shopping for the "perfect coop" which was no where to be found -- I told him that I had decided to let him make me my dream coop. Game on!
We purchased our little pullets -- put them in the brooder in the house-- and then the timeline was ON .... now we knew we needed a coop and it was time to start planning and building!
March 2015-- Planning the Coop
The very first step was to decide what I wanted which was:
* I wanted the coop to match my house
* I wanted the coop to NOT look like a chicken coop
* I wanted it to be Cute and Adorable and pleasant to look at (and not an eye-sore to the neighbors)
* I wanted it to be year-round weatherproof
* I wanted to to be predator proof
* I wanted it to be safe and functional
Our house is white and grey with a slate colored roof. So that is what we decided to do for the coop.
Style wise we wanted it to match the house in terms of colors (light grey with white trim and matching roof) and siding. I also wanted it to look like a play house or cottage.
I wanted it to be a full size walk-in coop with an "entry way" big enough for storing feed and supplies with a "screen door" to the part that the chickens were in.
I wanted to have the ability to collect eggs from inside (important on those snowy & inclement weather days).
I wanted a sturdy attached covered run that was big enough for an adult to walk around in -- and full size doors.
I wanted the run door in the run to be big enough to get a standard wheel barrow through the door also.
I wanted WINDOWS! Let the light in! Good ventilation!
Also: An automatic chicken coop door.
Hardware cloth above and below ground, and no way for predators (not even mice) to get in.
Window boxes for flowers (for looks).
Also wanted a "cleaning door" just for cleaning out the chicken part of the inside of the coop, that opened to the run, for ease in cleaning.
2 nesting boxes inside and an inside roost with a poop board beneath.
I drew up a sketch for my husband... and thus we began....
April 2015-- Choosing the site for the coop!
So.... we picked a spot on the north side of our yard... about 25' from the house. Easy to get to and run a hose or electrical cord if needed, but far enough away. It gets sun in the morning / afternoons but also has trees to the west and east that provide some shade at varying times of the day. It's the perfect mix of sunshine and shade, and a lovely spot for the coop to sit.
Visible from my back yard or back porch yet not visible from the street when you look at the house from the front. The coop structure also does not deter our view from our back windows. We placed it on the north east side of the yard. We chose the site carefully, keeping in mind that our neighbors would be able to see the structure. I didn't want a coop that would be an eyesore and didn't want passersby to see it and even realize that it was a chicken coop. The site selected was perfect!
April 2015 -- Ground Breaking!
So...the site that we chose for the coop was not level. That part of the yard slopes from west to east and from south to north, draining water out of the yard and away from our house. We needed level ground for building our dream coop ... and thus the digging began!
My husband mapped out the spot, marked it with string and posts and began digging (manually).
We then paid a local guy $50 to dig out the base with his tractor... That did most of the hard dirt moving, and my husband and son dug the rest out by hand. Lots of hard work. Thank goodness for the guy with the tractor!
We then ordered 13 tons of roadbase mix and had that delivered. We chose the roadbase mix because it would not move once wet. Topsoil wasn't structurally sound enough. It was a little more expensive but worth every penny. We needed the site to be solid and level and withstand rain, snow, ice, freezes and more. A good solid foundation. My son and husband carted the roadbase mix from a giant pile in our driveway, down to the coop site, load by load, using a trailer behind our lawn tractor, and shovels. Again, lots of hard work and manual labor! Just the cost of doing the site groundwork, in preparation for building the coop exceeded what my husband originally thought he could build a whole coop for. LOL It was just the start...
(01/15/2016 Please note: I will add pics and plans and update this thread... bear with me, this thread is a work in progress! Thanks! -Holly)
Edited by hollyanne0 - 1/15/16 at 11:44am