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coop height?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

  I'm starting to prep a site for our new coop. I've been looking at a ton of designs and I've noticed that a lot of the coops out there seem pretty tall. Other than potentially adding taller roosts, is there a reason for it? I was planning to make the coop itself about 5'x5'x 3' tall and set off the ground by 2'. We're going to have 4 chicks to go into it when it's done and I want them to be as happy and comfy as possible.

 

My plan is to modify this design http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/littlefeats-the-feather-factory-chicken-coop 

post #2 of 9

Many people just like a walk-in coop - that's the main reason for building taller.  One of our three coops is built very similarly to the style you're planning to build, and it's much easier for me to clean/manage the walk-ins, especially in the winter (we're in Indiana) or in crappy weather.  If rain is pouring down, I can add food, water, or scrape dropping boards from the comfort of being inside a walk-in coop.  For the non-walk-in, I'm kind of sticking my head/shoulders inside to tend to it.

 

That's really the only reason I prefer my walk-ins.  My smaller coop is fine - and was easier to build.  Here's our simple, smaller coop: 

 

 

Caretaker of a lovely mixed flock including: australorp, plymouth rocks, wyandotte, d'uccles, silkies, EEs, andalusian, and a few seramas, plus a golden retriever, great dane, and three cats.  I always swore that I wouldn't succumb to chicken math.  I lied.
 

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Caretaker of a lovely mixed flock including: australorp, plymouth rocks, wyandotte, d'uccles, silkies, EEs, andalusian, and a few seramas, plus a golden retriever, great dane, and three cats.  I always swore that I wouldn't succumb to chicken math.  I lied.
 

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post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 

That looks great! That is a good point about cleaning the coop itself, maybe I'll add another foot of height if I can find the boards for it

post #4 of 9
Ours is 7 foot tall and is built strong like a shed (insulated too). The only reason for its height is the ease of cleaning. We had a 4 1/2 ft triangular prism shaped coop in the beginning and it was a pain to clean, especially in the brutal Montana winters.

We have gone from a flock of 5, to a flock of 12 and the taller coop allows for an extended roosting bar too. Our younger birds love to be up high.
post #5 of 9

You know, use your first coop as a learning experience.  I've built a few small coops that I sold on Craigslist - my skills are fairly basic, and so they've been no works of art (but were sound, and cute-ish).  So if your smaller coop doesn't work out for you, then you can always build bigger in a year or two and sell your original (there are always people looking for coops).  

 

I'm no spring chicken, so I like convenience.  If I was 20 years younger then I'd probably pay no attention to the difference.  I was just giving you some pros/cons.

Caretaker of a lovely mixed flock including: australorp, plymouth rocks, wyandotte, d'uccles, silkies, EEs, andalusian, and a few seramas, plus a golden retriever, great dane, and three cats.  I always swore that I wouldn't succumb to chicken math.  I lied.
 

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Caretaker of a lovely mixed flock including: australorp, plymouth rocks, wyandotte, d'uccles, silkies, EEs, andalusian, and a few seramas, plus a golden retriever, great dane, and three cats.  I always swore that I wouldn't succumb to chicken math.  I lied.
 

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post #6 of 9
Our coops and run are both walk-ins, so nice for getting in out of the bad weather when checking on the hens, collecting eggs, feeding or cleaning. If you have the space and means, I recommend it.

We started out with a small, prefab coop/run. We really didn't use it, only to put the chicks out for a few hours on a sunny day, crawling on hands and knees through poopy grass to catch a wayward chick wasn't fun!
Edited by ChickenMammX4 - 5/14/16 at 9:26am
2 Buff Orpingtons, 4 Black Sex Links,. 1 Golden Retriever, 1 "old man" cat and 2 Betta.
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2 Buff Orpingtons, 4 Black Sex Links,. 1 Golden Retriever, 1 "old man" cat and 2 Betta.
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post #7 of 9

I agree with what the other posters have said. I had a 4x4 coop the first time for just a few hens, and it served it's purpose, but boy was it PITA to clean!  My current coop and run are walk-in ( I also have a lot more chicks now) and it really make life easier to clean or replenish food, water with out stooping over.

Best luck and post some pics when your done!!!!

post #8 of 9

Ease of maintenance and better ventilation, winter and summer.

 

Here's my theory on the 'stack up' aspect to coop design:

Bottom of pop door is best about 8" above floor, so bedding doesn't get dragged out of coop.

Nice to have bottom of nests about 18" above bedding to allow use of that floor space under them(doesn't count if your nests are mounted on outside of coop).

Roosts are best about 12" higher than nests so birds won't roost(sleep) in nests and poop in them, if you use poop boards under roosts it will also 'stretch' your floor space.

Upper venting works best as high as possible above roosts so no strong drafts hit roosts in winter...and hot/moist air and ammonia can rise and exit coop.

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."

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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."

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post #9 of 9

I built my coop to the exact dimensions you state: 5'x5'x3' tall, it's about 3 feet off the ground. 

 

I really like that it has 3' clearance underneath.  It allows me to go under there to adjust feeders, dust bath, etc.

 

I DO NOT LIKE that it is 3' tall.  I should have made it at least 4' tall and probably 5' tall at least.  It's cramped, hard to get inside to do anything, and the roosts are in direct line with the ventilation (drafts). 

 

Anyway good luck.  Plan a lot ahead of time for everything, which it sounds like you're already looking ahead so thats great. 

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