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Das Huhnen Haus In The Texas Hill Country

By chickimoma, Jan 15, 2012 | Updated: Jan 16, 2012 | | |
  1. chickimoma
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    Too Many Chickens! When I went from 2 to 22 hens, I needed a bigger coop.
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    This is Jess, who built my coop over Christmas break. He is a wonderful 6th grade English teacher but he has other hidden talents!

    We bought the "Shiloh" coup design from My Pet Chicken. It is 6 x 10, adequate for about 22 chickens, and it has exterior access nesting boxes (on the back side). We have brutally hot summers here in Boerne and tin roofing is a typical Hill Country style to keep homes, sheds cooler. So, instead of shingles, we used tin roofing, which is what is on my 1886 stone German farm house and barn. I picked colors to match the decorative Victorian trim on my house: maroon, light turquoise, and white. We put 1/2" hardware cloth on the people door and windows to keep critters out and a removable glass panel on the people door. You can't see it very well in the above picture, but there is a motion detector lamp by the people door.

    Here is an interior shot of the nesting boxes. The building plan had the nesting boxes flush on the floor. Jess added a drop-down ledge to keep eggs and nesting material from spilling out.
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    No, the blue and lavender eggs aren't real but the others are! I put the fake ones in the nesting boxes to give my hens a hint. Here is the ledge in the drop-down position.
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    We added FRP (glasbord) on the interior for easy clean-up and insulated to keep the coop cooler. I had a Pullet Shut automatic chicken door in my old coop that we reinstalled in the new coop.
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    We put in an interior light is on a timer to adjust "daylight" hours in the winter.

    I don't know why this picture rotated. I'm trying to figure out how to change it back. Just tilt your head to the left.
    This is the exterior access to the nesting boxes.
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    We stuffed some rubber foam padding between the coop wall and the nesting box lid to keep water from trickling into the nesting boxes.

    One of my favorite additions to the plan is the clean out slot. I can just hose out all the debris onto compost.
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    Here is Chloe, my little poodley mix dog. Hello, who is in here???
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    Nothing is too good for my hens! I thought about adding a ceiling fan but then visualized them flying up and getting their heads chopped off or maybe roosting on the blades and getting an unintentional Merry-Go-Round ride!

    Here are two of my beautiful girls. Penny Penedesenca and Miracle the Exchequer Leghorn.
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    These 2 jump up on my shoulders and into my lap. They just started laying. Miracle has a little white egg and Penny lays a very dark brown one. Each of my hens is a different breed. No roosters since I'm in the middle of Boerne on a 1/2 acer double lot. I keep my neighbors happy with free eggs. I've been on the Boerne Historical Home Tour and the Native Plant Society of Texas, Boerne Tour of Yards. My biggest challenge has been how to keep a chicken-free zone for landscaping. I tell people that chickens are members of the Flat Earth Society. If they see a mound of mulch, they want to level it! It is such a joy to show people how easy and rewarding it is to keep backyard chickens. My new coop is a delightful addition to my property.

    My thanks to all the great information and inspiration I got from others who posted their coops and advice on BYC.

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Comments

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  1. riverpilot69
    The only thing I would have done differently is I would have installed the Pullet Shut door to open to the outside. I have one and it seems kind of flimsy on the lower corner away from the hinge side. A predator can push it in, but would have a harder time pulling the bottom of the door out. I used a piece of flat metal and ran it diagonally from lower left, to upper right. It made the door more rigid and have had no problems. Very nice coop. Great job.
  2. AmyLM
    I'm also in Texas... maybe looking for someone to do some work like this for us down the road. Know anyone near Dallas?
  3. wava1vaughn
    Hi from Ga. good job
  4. parkerpeeps7
    Love your coop!!
  5. chickimoma
    Desirai,
    Going with the basic plan but using all new better-best materials (like treated lumber, spring loaded aluminum windows etc.), I think Jess estimated material cost at about $700 - 750. With all the add-ons, like the FRP for the interior (we did use a cheaper laminant for the walls and just put FRP on the floor), motion detector lamp, wiring, insulation, electrical fixtures, steps, costs were closer to $1,000, not including labor. I already had the Pullet Shut door (see chickendoors.com) which is $180 but it is worth it. For about $80 more you can get the Pullet Shut door with a solar panel and light sensor so you could go without wiring your coop or messing with the timer mechanism. You can use a lot of recyled material to keep costs down, as other people descirbe in building their coops, like an old door, used windows,etc. I don't have access to that kind of stuff so I did it "city girl" style with all new stuff. Jess is going to build himself a coop and start a flock now that he sees what is needed, but he has access to reclaimed materials and will figure out how to build one (not the Shiloh plan) just using his imagination and stuff he can find. Cost $0. .Helps if you have a "handy" man about the place. I'm solo and a disaster with a hammer and saw.
  6. Desirai
    those pictures are great!! Do you mind sharing how much it cost to build?
  7. chickimoma
    Tania, you are too funny. Just looked closer at your avatar. What a clever, darling kitten. It has strategically placed itself for maximum finger manipulations! I'm going to try to get some dots (umlate??) going on but I'm not sure how to change the tag. Still learning.
    Thanks,
    Cynthia
    Cynthia
  8. confusedbanti
    The Coops looks great ! Love it. well done :)
    The ü ö ä you can buy from me I sell the dots ¨¨¨ on Craigslist (just kidding) You have to change the format on Microsoft for German and Swiss.
  9. chickimoma
    Thanks for the spelling correction, confusedbanti. How do it get the 2 dots over the u? Glad I didn't make a sign yet.
    Desirai, I thought I submitted my text with pictures. I'll try again.
  10. Desirai
    Do you have any pictures? I was thinking of buying a coop plan from MyPetChicken also.

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