Having moved from London to Gloucestershire, UK in March 2011 the one thing my wife wanted was some chickens. We originally planned to buy a coop once we'd brought a house but we ended up taking on a single unwanted Belgium Bantam from a mother at our local school and then decided to buy some company for her which came in the form of a Columbian Blacktail and a Bovine Brown. We had been given a coop but i had been inspired by this site (https://www.backyardchickens.com/web/viewblog.php?id=26484) so set about building our own coop within a run. I've never owned poultry before or built anything like this.
I started and ended with a LOT of doodle plans, it was like the deranged ramblings of a drunk man obsessed...
The planned site was to utilise an odd shaped space in the garden.
Child labour was fully exploited for the build.
A solid base for the frame which will hopefully double up as predator protection.
Power tools were borrowed from a friend (cheers Jim!), 95mm x 45mm wood for the framework was pressure treated.
The four sides frameworks treated with stain & assembled (screw & glue):
A very satisfying days work with my father produced this.
I've never made a door before.
The irregular shape of the run produced this shonky piece of woodwork for the roof.
The bitumen corrugated roof sections required more support than i'd expected.
Mowgli is coping well with his feathered friends, but is yet to be totally trusted alone with them!
0.5" mesh added all round & 9mm WBP ply used for the coop, all ply panels installed with coach bolts and wingnuts enabling complete disassembly for a thorough clean when required.
This shows the plunge cuts for the poo flap, barn doors & entrance / exits doors (cuts in other panels made for ventilation, side access &nest box access).
Inside coop showing coop roof & perch supports, ventilation holes & side access.
The nest box with angled roof to prevent birds socialising on top.
The inside main panel for the coop, showing entry / exit doors with remote opening (string), the barn doors for added daytime ventilation (4" perch at double doors height), wide poo flap for a mass clearout of the deep litterwhen needed, ladder to the coop, dustbath in a flower pot, food & water.
Almost finished (we plan to swap the stones for wood chips & the gap above the door is to be filled with a custom piece of stained glass).
Filling with dust extraced wood shavings for deep litter.
Nest box flap down showing the 3 nest boxes. Also visible is the string for opening the coop from outside.
Lilly, one of three lucky birds.
Too many of these though - and Lillys gonna roast!
Milly (prefers to sleep and lay her eggs on the floor):
Molly (to her left is the step up to the nest box for little people):
Since i posted this thread: https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=604298&p=1 i've now added two of these for extra ventilation in the ceiling to reduce moisture and smell.
Final touches still being added...
... this stained glass piece is set in above the door and was made by my Dad specially for our coop!
We may add some additional perch walkways to food treat tables to utilise the height and keep them on their toes!
Things i'd do differently:
- Plan the coop itself better prior to build (i spent ages thinking out the framework and should have spent longer doing the coop).
- Knock a few inches off the height.
- Not swear as much.
- One of the entrance doors is blocked by the 3rd nestbox (i may go down to 2 nestbox to address this).
- Measure more frequently before cutting timber!
- Budget, budget, budget!!!!
- V E N T I L A T I O N +++!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!