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First Night in Coop - Page 2

post #11 of 12
Thread Starter 
Well, we spaced the walls/trim & the roof so that there's about an inch or so on all sides for ventilation. Plus, then there's overhang of the roof and front (over the run) and the back, as well as the opening on the top, where the tin cap goes over the roofing pieces. We've already discussed that if we needed to add a fan at some point, we could do it. The inside is simple, just access to the nesting boxes & then a large roosting ladder, which will give them plenty of space.

I'm fortunate that my fiancé is a welder, his father is a machinist & a good family friend is a union tradesman. So, between the 3 of them, they've put together a fantastic coop/run. I pitched my vision & they made it happen. I helped out where/when I could but I also didn't want there to be too many cooks in the kitchen. 😆

post #12 of 12
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by Ridgerunner View Post

Can you see to read a newspaper in there? If so, you have enough light. Leaving some openings under the overhang can let in a lot of light. They do need enough light to see to go to bed, but especially if it is only for sleeping and laying, there is no reason for it to be really bright. A coop being really bright can lead to behavioral problems, all the way from feather picking to cannibalism. The coop being a little darker seems to calm them down more. You may need a window but even a gable vent can let in a lot of light. I’m not a fan of ridge vents in areas where snow can build up, but your roof looks steep enough that snow should not build up.

I always have the problem of the chicks sleeping under the door when I move mine into the elevated grow-out coop and I let them in the run, even if they have been locked in the coop for over a week. When I move them into one of my coops on the ground I never have that problem. I think until they start to roost they like to sleep someplace really low. By the way, my brooder raised chicks normally start to roost at 10 to 12 weeks. I’ve had some start at 5 weeks, some start later than 12, but 10 to 12 is a good average.

What I suggest is that you go out there after dark and lock them inside the coop section. After they have settled down for the night about all you have to do is pick them up if it is pretty dark. If you have light out there it can be a bit more exciting. I have had some groups put themselves to bed in the coop after only doing this once, but what is more normal is that it takes about a week before they catch on. I have had some take three weeks. There is very little that is consistent about chickens and their behavior.

I'm in the St Louis region and while it's possible for us to get a lot of snow, it hasn't happened in quite some time, ha. Plus, like you mentioned, with the pitch of the roof, we shouldn't have any issues with snow building up. And the run is slightly slanted so it should run of that as well.

I'll probably put a little solar light in there.
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