Shipping Crate Coop
Our coop started out like this:
First, we modified it by putting an extended roof on it to help to make it look better when we add the front and back run. The overhang will help to connect them together while still making the roof lines look nice. The coop itself has a black composition roof and the runs will have a corrugated metal roof. (We live in Washington state so these girls need a dry place while outside!) The roof built this way will also allow for plenty of venting. We cut venting out of the top of the original box and added 1/4" hardware wire to keep out any little critters.
I hopped on Craiglist again and found a $10 door and 3 matching, charming, leaded glass windows for $8 each! I used the 1/4" Hardware wire in the windows too. Here is what the front looks like so far: (The boards below the roof line are temporary. The girls were ready to get outside!)
Here is the back side:
I need to take more photos of the inside but here is one. We really like how the inside turned out. It is very functional and easy to clean. We got alot of ideas from BYC on poop trays, roosts, nests, venting, easy cleaning, etc.!
We are in the process of painting the exterior now and have painted the body "monarail silver" (a $5 screw up from Sherwin-Williams). We plan on painting the trim a dark espresso brown color. I played around with the picture on paint and this is what we came up with so far. We are undecided if we are going to go with a white or brown painted run. We are leaning towards brown.
Well, at the end of the day we DID decide on brown and we love it!! Here it is:
And the back side:
**UPDATE** September 25, 2011
The photo below shows the framing for the hinged roof. This will help with cleaning the back run. The center, grey painted supports lift out so you can move freely around the run without hitting your head.
Still working on getting the rest of the hardware wire put in around the run.
We ended up taking out the "human side" of the coop so our spoiled girls could have more room inside.
***How we got our 10 sweet girls***
Our girls came from several places. Our first batch of chicks came from Issaquah Grange. They get their spring chick supply from Privett Hatchery. We decided on 2 Speckled Sussex, 3 Easter Eggers and 1 Buff Orpington. We then picked up 2 more chicks (Black Australorps) from a local breeder. After several weeks we discovered we had 2 roosters and possibly 3, which we are not allowed to keep in our city, so we decided to go ahead and purchase 3 more chicks (1 Barred Rock and 2 Red Star Sex-Links) to replace them. We did end up with 3 roo's total (1 Speckled Sussex (Carlos), 1 Easter Egger (Emelio) and the Barred Rock (Stella). We found them all forever homes as pets and they now have their own flocks of girls! So we ended up with 8 girls with our biggest, sweetest baby, Cora (our Buff Orpington) at the bottom of the pecking order and always by herself on the roost. So....I found another Buff Orpington the same age to adopt. It turned out however that this potential new Buff Orpington had a best buddy already, an Easter Egger that had been attacked two separate times by the same dog. Poor girl had an injured eye, damaged wing and broken toes. I couldn't leave them, the lady was selling her flock to move out to Canada so, I bought the BO and the EE was free!!
So, here are our 10 girls.
Baby Cora (March 2011)
She is a hugger. Yes, when you bend down and call her, she runs to you and positions herself between your legs and as you bend your head down, she stretches her neck up to rub her face on your neck and face and then she tucks her head under your hair or into your neck and she hugs you! It is very sweet. She will stay there forever if you let her.
Baby Esther (March 2011)
Esther is our funny, sassy girl. This is my husband's favorite as he says she is the chicken version of me. Haha. She only layed a few eggs and then she stopped and we have no idea why. She is quite a little pip. She is the bold one that was the first to fly up on the high fence (giving me a heart attack because of the dog on the other side) and the first to forget who is the boss and try to fight you to keep her spot in the pecking order. She never wins btw. lol She is the one we have to keep an eye on because she will be the first to peck you in the face. She is our little turd, and we love her to death.
Cora and Esther having a chat. (Summer 2011)
Mabel means business when it comes to foraging, this girl does not mess around. We believe she is also top of the pecking order. She doesn't like to be picked up and is appalled when you do as if to say "how dare you pick me up, how embarrasing!" LOL
Sweet Hazel is Esther's side kick. She is often at Esther's side trying to show she can be just as tough as Esther, but fails terribly as she is too sweet.
Charlotte (4 weeks)
Charlotte started out as our little runt girl however she quickly caught up with the rest. She is very much a lady and does not like to share her nest box as she likes to sit and take her time. If one of the other ladies try to peek at her in "her nest", she will trill and let them know to watch out!
Charlotte and Hazel
Lucy (4 weeks)
Miss Lucy. Our sweet, shy Lucy. She is kind of the baby of the group and a bit of a loner. She was sick with sour crop and I nursed her back to health. I even slept with her on the couch to make sure she was getting enough fluids as she would only drink from a dropper. She is completly healthy now!
Little Lola girl. I love this photo because she is so ugly, she is cute in it! Lola is very much about being independent. She bussels around without a care as to what the others are doing. She is a beautiful girl now with the cutest fluffy butt of the bunch. I think she looks like she has a little petty skirt on when she bends over. hehe
Alice is a good girl. She has really warmed up to us more and she knows when she hears that back door open, her human family is out to bring treats!! (Well...that is what she hopes each time.) She is the 1st to run fast from across the yard to see if we have a treat for her. This girl has quite an appetite.