We received 30 chickens from Murray McMurray Hatchery on 3/7/15
I had build a nice brooder and we were all ready... thought 8 weeks was plenty of time to build the coop right?
Well it snowed right after the chicks arrived so I lost maybe 2 weeks & was down to 6!
Needless to day one lesson I learned was build the coop first.
I read this many times but I was smarter than that... HA! Listen to me - build the coop first
The below took me about 10 - 12 weeks, mostly alone with some assistance from my Daughter, Son & Wife.
I had NEVER built anything like this before... so I think it turned out pretty good.
Enjoy! I know I did!!
Helper for at least a few minutes... was colder than it looked but we only had 8 weeks to build!
I don't know if you noticed the post hole digger my daughter had in the above photo?
Well our land is full of rocks so below is PLAN B.
Walls going up... slow task with just one doing all the work!
Now for the roof
Windows... at this point my wife is thinking I've gone a bit overboard :|
Chicken door phase I (this one didn't last long)....
People door... except we need some steps!
My helper did come back to help insulate... we live in WI so it gets pretty cold.
There she is applying the primer coat on the interior walls.
Installed a "poop board" however later put in a "poop hammock" which works much better!!
We are at 10 weeks in the basement & my wife has had enough... it is Mother's Day & the girls are in their new home.
Although the outside isn't done...
10 hole nest box added, I don't have a photo but under that far window I added a "poop hammock"
I used pine closet bars & a tarp, it pulls right out & can be easily dumped in the compost pile.
Way better than cleaning out the poop board by hand each day!
Starting the run as working sun up to sun down!
18 feet wide by 28 feet long, will be screened in with hardware cloth.
People door for the run... hardware cloth installed.
Upgrade number one (of many) Pullet-Shut Automatic Chicken Door - worth it's weight in gold!
A little paint, steps & completed run minus the roof (later upgrade)
Metal roof (I wish I had made the coop roof metal as well oh well)
Brrrr first snow fall of the season, glad I got the plastic up on the run!
It is winter & I've let them rest... we are getting maybe 4 eggs a day with 27 girls.
We were getting 2 dozen a day in the summer... so I added lights on 1/24/16
The run is covered in plastic with vents in the roof and a bit on each top side.
Keeps the wind & snow out. Also on sunny days it acts like a greenhouse and is much warmer in the run than outside.
I've tried several water ideas however this is the best set up.
Just an upside down 5 gallon bucket with a lid & 2-4 1/2 hols drilled into the sides.
Love the heater! No worries about frozen water.
28 more girls on the way!! Time to expand!!
This is the water set up I had.... a fountain pump circulated the water through the pipes & the birds could drink from the horizontal water nipples. It was a pain to keep the water fresh & the nipples leaked. Also the hens liked to lay eggs behind the barrel (or on top). I have since removed this... the idea sounded good, but the simple system shown earlier is much better & less headaches!
Just added a temporary segregation unit to the run for our new arrivals.
This way they can get to know each other in safety for a few weeks.
A few screws & cutting some zip ties & it comes out easily.