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"Small?" Chicken coop and run questions.

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

Ok, so this boils down to one thing. I have no self control, HAHA! My boss wanted to go to "Chick Days" at our local Orschlen's to get chickens for his daughters and I thought, "Why the heck not, I'll get a couple too!" I had previously raised ~20 quail but lost them during a storm a couple years back when their hutch blew away. I could hear some of the mails in the field near my house for a while after that, but I'm assuming the local wildlife finally got them all :( 

 

Enough about that. Here's my schpill. I am considering making a 4'x4' raised coop for these two chickies to live in once they get older and probably around a 6'x12' run area plus the area under the coop which brings the grand total to 10'x12'. I am in a residential area with neighbors to my side and rear so I am limited to using my fenced in back yard. My concerns are, will this size of coop/run be good enough to keep the smell down if not eliminate it altogether? I know that chickens are poop factories, but if I can keep the neighbors from smelling it and complaining that will be one less thing to worry about. (Even though one neighbor has about 4 hound dogs that yowl incessantly that I let slide. Because they're dogs, that's what they do.)

 

Also, how many chickens would I be able to keep in this area comfortably while minimizing funky fresh poo smell? I am thinking about getting some bantam chickens eventually once this first group "expires" for lack of a better term.

 

Here are my new Orpington babies. :D

 

post #2 of 6

Like you, I am very concerned about keeping neighbors unaffected by smells, noise, etc. I don't want to rock the neighborhood boat lol.

 

My opinion is that two chickens in a run/coop that size won't smell very much, if at all. Especially if you use some sort of litter method for the run and clean the coop out regularly.

 

Once the chickens destroy the grass in my run, I am going to lay out pine shavings. I will also have pine shavings inside the coop as well. Once those need to be emptied out of the coop, I will toss them into the run for decomposition.

 

I will also be using a poop-board in the coop, so I can clean it out daily and keep the smell down even more. I know a lot of people (including myself in the past) use an ammonia neutralizer as well called Sweet PDZ in their coops and runs. They sell it in powder and granular forms and you just toss it with your bedding or sprinkle it around your run and it eliminates the odors from the poo. I am planning to use it on top of my poop board (much like the concept of kitty litter) and scoop the poop out of the PDZ.

 

Hope this helps! Good luck and :welcome 

 

P.S. Cuuute chicks!


Edited by ChickityChina - 3/11/16 at 8:55am
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post #3 of 6
As long as you keep up with the daily maintenance, you shouldn't have odors other than dry litter and feathers. Cecal poops will be quite stinky, but proper litter should take care of them quickly...before the odor can reach your neighbor's noses. If you do notice an odor, it means that you've left it too long in between cleanings or your management strategy may need tweaking.
post #4 of 6
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChickityChina View Post
 

 

Once the chickens destroy the grass in my run, I am going to lay out pine shavings. I will also have pine shavings inside the coop as well. Once those need to be emptied out of the coop, I will toss them into the run for decomposition.

 

Do the pine shavings from inside the coop not smell too terribly bad if you just stick them in the run?

post #5 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by That0neGuy124 View Post
 

Do the pine shavings from inside the coop not smell too terribly bad if you just stick them in the run?

 

Not if you rake the run every couple days and let the pine shavings fluff out. The poop will fall through to the dirt and decompose and doesn't smell.

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post #6 of 6
Thread Starter 
Ok. So I gathered all my supplies for my coop ($200+!). 4x4 ft is a lot bigger than what I thought, but I say, "what the heck! Might as well!" I will difinitely have room for more chickies. It's still cheaper than the ones you get at orschlen's or tractor supply and is WAY bigger. So I'm not upset about the price.



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