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Colorado high plains chicken duplex

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
After starting out with six pullets in a small coop, we quickly ran out of room when we decided we needed more and wanted to raise meat birds. At the current time, we have a dozen egg layers, two "temporary" turkeys, and raise between 30-50 Cornish Crosses for meat each year. We sell the eggs we do not use, but use all the broilers, and then some.

The main goals for building this new coop were 1) to increase capacity for egg layers and 2) to make a multipurpose area for meat birds (50+ per year), as a breeding pen, or as a nursery for raising replacements. It was important that we could get in and clean easily without bending over, that the runs were easy to clean, and that the coop would close up at night to prevent potential predator problems.

We started with a 10'x10' shed we built ourselves on a concrete slab. Windows were installed for ventilation and will be covered with hardware cloth in the spring for predator protection. There are also upper vents for air circulation. The runs are built with dog kennel panels; each side has individual access but there is also a door between the runs. There are hanging feeders outside and metal water cans.

The interior modifications started with a chicken wire barrier to make two distinct areas. There are framed panels of chicken wire separating the two sides all the way up to the midline of the roof. We have vertical lift doors on pulleys for run access on both sides. On the egg later side there was the addition of bucket style nesting boxes, removable linoleum, a triple nesting bar and hanging feeders and waterers. We did not put roosting bars or nesting boxes on the meat bird side because they would develop breast sores if they tried to roost too much. There is a concrete step for the meat birds to get in and out.

We did add a solar panel kit and it provides enough power to supplement light in the winter or for late afternoon visits to the coop. There is a solar motion sensor light near the front door. In the deep of winter we've noticed that the hanging waterers are not much help so we rotate waterers outside and keep one inside each side. They do freeze sometimes but the coop stays fairly warm. Deep straw bedding has worked well for the dozen egg layers and we use wood shavings for the broilers. One benefit of the duplex is that it seems to be working well for the integration of the replacement pullets into the flock.

In the future, it would be nice to have wired electric--the solar panel can't handle heat lamps or anything that uses too much wattage. We also need shade (hence the blue tarps) and a wind barrier, but that isn't anything new to us out here on the plains. Finally, a nipple watering and automatic feeding system would be handy.

Here is our building diagram and photos:






Edited by rockin5t - 1/15/16 at 2:26pm
post #2 of 6

You have a GREAT  COOP....     ???  do your eves provide additional ventilation, or just those on the gable ends? 

post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 
No, the eves do not provide ventilation. The four vents and chicken doors seem to work well even when it's too cold for them to go in the run.
post #4 of 6

Nice, I love a split coop!

Mine has been invaluable.

 

Have you had it thru a summer yet?

I agree you'll probably need more ventilation, especially in summer....depending on your climate.

Great article on VENTILATION, one of THE MOST IMPORTANT aspects of coop design.

Fantastic treatise to help decide how much SPACE your chickens need.

 

Chicken math is not just 'addition'...but also should include Division, Multiplication and especially Subtraction!!!

 

Quoting centrarchid:

"Make every effort to understand your chicken's biology and the environment that supports it."

Reply

Great article on VENTILATION, one of THE MOST IMPORTANT aspects of coop design.

Fantastic treatise to help decide how much SPACE your chickens need.

 

Chicken math is not just 'addition'...but also should include Division, Multiplication and especially Subtraction!!!

 

Quoting centrarchid:

"Make every effort to understand your chicken's biology and the environment that supports it."

Reply
post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 
Thanks! Right now half is a breeding pen and the other is for the egg layers. I'm using an empty honeybee super box as a nesting box in the transition side and I think they like it.

We opened it in September which was in the 90s for a while. We are thinking about making "screened" front doors to use in summer that will be just inside the big doors.

What do you do with your split coop?
post #6 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by rockin5t View Post

Thanks! Right now half is a breeding pen and the other is for the egg layers. I'm using an empty honeybee super box as a nesting box in the transition side and I think they like it.

We opened it in September which was in the 90s for a while. We are thinking about making "screened" front doors to use in summer that will be just inside the big doors.

What do you do with your split coop?

Mine is just a 4' x 6' section of main coop created with a temporary chicken wire wall,

has a people door, pop door to separate run, 6' roost w/poop board and a built in bin feeder.

 

Have used it for overwintering a rogue cockerel until butcher, growing out new chicks, broody hen last winter, segregating a few layers to pinpoint who was laying a certain egg.

Great article on VENTILATION, one of THE MOST IMPORTANT aspects of coop design.

Fantastic treatise to help decide how much SPACE your chickens need.

 

Chicken math is not just 'addition'...but also should include Division, Multiplication and especially Subtraction!!!

 

Quoting centrarchid:

"Make every effort to understand your chicken's biology and the environment that supports it."

Reply

Great article on VENTILATION, one of THE MOST IMPORTANT aspects of coop design.

Fantastic treatise to help decide how much SPACE your chickens need.

 

Chicken math is not just 'addition'...but also should include Division, Multiplication and especially Subtraction!!!

 

Quoting centrarchid:

"Make every effort to understand your chicken's biology and the environment that supports it."

Reply
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