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Value in chicken coop height?

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

I am about to begin construction of my coop (my 6 chicks will arrive the week of June 13th!) and I am looking at different designs and such, trying to weigh out cost, size, materials, etc.  So, I am wondering how important it is to have a coop with a run that is human accessible vs the shorter run designs that I have seen.  I keep looking at the coop pages on BYC and it seems like a pretty good mix of tall and shorter.

Just thought I would open up a thread to discuss pros and cons of different coop design options. Thanks!

post #2 of 8

My run is a walk in.  I definitely wanted to be able to stand up in there to save my back smile  My coop, however, is not.  It is small and raised with a large clean out door (again, easy on the back).

Owned by two old dogs (yellow lab and a big, red, fuzzy mutt) and four chickens (Buff Orpington, Barred Rock, and two Easter Eggers)
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Owned by two old dogs (yellow lab and a big, red, fuzzy mutt) and four chickens (Buff Orpington, Barred Rock, and two Easter Eggers)
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post #3 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by VerdaMaeFarms 

I am about to begin construction of my coop (my 6 chicks will arrive the week of June 13th!) and I am looking at different designs and such, trying to weigh out cost, size, materials, etc.  So, I am wondering how important it is to have a coop with a run that is human accessible vs the shorter run designs that I have seen.


Well, if you are going to have 6 chickens you prolly ought to have a MINIMUM run size of at least 6x10 or 4x15.  Six feet is on the borderline of too wide to have convenient hinged-top access; four feet is fairly well within the realm of having it be reasonable that way. But, if you are going to go with the minimum-size run, then I'd say you kind of have your choice.

If OTOH you want to make your run any bigger than that -- to give them more-ample space, to reduce future sanitation problems, or to allow room for more possible chickens in the future -- then it will almost right away get too big to be really feasible for hinged-top access, and you'd almost HAVE to go to walk-in height.

Note that hinged-top designs (where the run is only 3' tall or so) really don't save you THAT much money. They force you to put a good strong wire top on and it really is safer if it's also fairly small mesh (whereas walk-in size runs can be topless, or net-topped, or 2x4-wire-topped), and all they save you is a *little* money on shorter posts plus the cost of 3' x total-length-of-run-fence fencing material. THey also make it quite a lot harder to add sand or gravel to the run if you ever want to someday.

I'm not against them, as such, and I think that in some circumstances they make very good sense. I'm just trying to outline what I see as the sometimes-not-obvious pros and cons.

Note that there are really THREE (not just two) types of run options -- rectangular wood-framed short (3-4' high) run with hinged top or side panels to allow access, or rectangular wood-framed walk-in height run, or hoop-style walk-in height run (cattle panels are more durable but pvc-with-wire-over-it is also an option)

Good luck, have fun,

Pat

post #4 of 8

I originally designed my coop and run 6ft hight but decided I was going to save my back the trouble and went with 8 ft high. Good thinking on my part because when I come to visit with my girls i can just hang out inside without having to crouch. here are some pics.
http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/uploads/92957_inside_chicken_coop_early_stages.jpg
http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/uploads/92957_chicken_coop_side_view.jpg
http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/uploads/92957_chicken_coop_completed.jpg

Husband to an amazing wife, 9 year old son, 1 year old Baby boy. New additions include 2 Buff Orpingtons, 2 Americana's, 1 Brown Leghorn, 4 White/Grey Leghorns, 4 Rhode Island Reds
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Husband to an amazing wife, 9 year old son, 1 year old Baby boy. New additions include 2 Buff Orpingtons, 2 Americana's, 1 Brown Leghorn, 4 White/Grey Leghorns, 4 Rhode Island Reds
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post #5 of 8

Our coop/run is 5 ft tall.  I am only 5'2", so it's kind of nice for me.  The original plan was only 4' high, I figure I didn't want to kill my neck.  We didn't go higher than 5 ft because I don't want the neighbors to see our coop, and also the cost would jump and we were going to run into excess/waste material.  Our coop is only 4x8, we only have 3 chickens.  If I could go bigger, I would.  We based our design on how tall we are and what our budget was.

Good luck.

http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/uploads/90568_img_0594.jpg

http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/uploads/90568_img_0602.jpg

Meet the Chickettes!
1 RIR (Brittney), 1 BO (Eleanor), 1 BR (Jeanette)

SAHM to 3 daughters, 8, 6, and 4 years old, and one cat.
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Meet the Chickettes!
1 RIR (Brittney), 1 BO (Eleanor), 1 BR (Jeanette)

SAHM to 3 daughters, 8, 6, and 4 years old, and one cat.
Reply
post #6 of 8

Mine is high enough off the ground that I don't have to squat to clean.  I can rake out the shavings right into the wheelbarrow without reaching or stooping.  wink  I have a walk-in run and a reach-in coop (I can climb in if i NEED to...) I (we) also built it high enough up so that the space under the coop is used to store feed, grit, oyster shell, D.E., shavings, etc.

Due to unforseen circumstances, I'm out of the chicken business.  :(
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Due to unforseen circumstances, I'm out of the chicken business.  :(
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post #7 of 8

I just built a new coop this year.

I would say human height is best. My old coop was way to low and it was a gong show sickbyc every time you needed to get in there to clean it out. It was also ground level so there was lots of bending.


My new coop has a full sized man door. My only concern about this coop is the heat rising to the top. It gets very wintery here. I left the old coop in case i have to move them in there for the winter. For now it make a great place to store feed and supplies.



So yeah human size it for ease of human access. or construct in such a way that reduces bending. (my first mistake)

7 hens. 4 cats. 1 dumb dog
my current project
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7 hens. 4 cats. 1 dumb dog
my current project
poultry websites rated and reviewed
Submit your poultry site
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post #8 of 8
I have a dog run I am going to use..I really like your coop deign. We are abandoning our coop that I built 3 yr ago due to a chicken tick problem, hence the dog run. Do you have plans for your coop? I need to use as little wood as possible and will probably use milk crates for nest boxes, but love your access doors and roosting system.
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