Mimi's Coop!

By DMH, Jul 27, 2017 | |
  1. DMH
    Recently retired, I decided to raise some chickens in my back yard. I have 5 grandchildren at present and thought this would all be a good learning experience. The main part of the coop I purchased used from a local farmer. I designed the run around the coop and included a tree in the center. No paper or pens to map it out, I just decided to dig some holes and cement in some 4x4x6’s. Measuring and bolting sawed off pallets to the post. Just decided on size as I went along. I built a gate out of pallets and placed it next to coop for easy access to the door of the coop. Total run ended up 10ft x 16ft. Worried about predators because the coop and run are located at the edge of the woods, I dug 10 inches deep at the base of the run and ran 1 inch hard wire from 10 inches deep up the outside of the pallets. Then added cinder blocks over the hard wire in the ground and around the base of the pallets to keep anything from digging under. I then ran 2 inch wire over the 1 inch wire, pallets, post and over the top of the run to keep predators from diving in. The gate was also enclosed in wire. I ran a hard cover over the back side of coop slanted down over the run to keep a dry area at all times for food. Added my 6 chickens at 12 weeks old. At 16 weeks, a predator attacked 2 of them. One didn’t make it. I believe a raccoon or weasel reached in somehow and grabbed them. Now my run has a 1/2 inch hard wire covering everything! Predator red blinking lights added, motion sensor light added, and wind chimes on the gate. I ran lights to the inside of the coop for the longer days of winter and attached hard locks to the doors of the coop. I have planted mint, grape vines and nadina around the run. There are all kinds of toys in the run including a mirror, swing, xylophone and roost bolted to the tree in the center of the coop. They have tree stumps and a great big dirt bath area to play in. There is a nice area under the coop for hiding out. They do free range 3-4 hrs during the day. So since I am recently retired and the coop is at the end of our acre I sure would love to have that automatic door. It’s not to bad going out to let them in and out now because it is summer, but not sure how I will love doing it in the winter.

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