MoonShadows Farm Chicken Coop and Run
Our coop is 10' x 8' with 6' 6" walls and a gabled roof. It was framed using standard dimensional lumber and sheathed with rough cut eastern yellow pine boards of varying widths. The floor joists are constructed of 2 x 6's, rest on cinder block piers and are covered with OSB and plywood with Black Jack 57 as a protected covering. The roof is plywood with asphalt shingles over felt paper. It has 5 shed windows covered with hardware cloth screens, an automatic chicken door, a human door, a bump out nesting area with 4 nesting boxes, 2 rows of roosts over galvanized pans filled with Sweet PDZ, gable vents, and room for a future enclosed storage area for food and supplies and a brooder/hospital area. The run is 10 x 16 and constructed of pressure treated dimensional lumber and covered with 1 x 2 and 2 x 4 welded wire on the top, sides and in an apron about 2 feet around the perimeter. We have 13 hens and 1 rooster.
The coop is about 50 feet behind our house on what used to be a hill going down to the back field. Last year we brought in about 25 dump trucks of fill to extend the yard by about another 18 feet, and it is on this "extension" that we decided to put the coop. As you can see, the area is still slightly slopped towards the field, so each pier is a different height. We decided to use concrete blocks placed on gravel for footings.
The base is built of 2x6s and pressure treated wood "plates" in each corner to rest on the concrete blocks.
Joists are hung using joist holders for extra strength.
. The floor is 5/8 OSB. (We thought that would be sufficient, and it is just for chickens, but with joists on 24" centers,
there was a lot of give to the floor for us humans. I later added another 1/2" of plywood to the floor.)
Front - Chicken Entrance North Side - Human Entrance
Back - Nesting Box SideSouth Side - The roosts will be along this side
Roof Trusses - Front and North Side
Plywood Roof Felt Paper to protect roof
Trimmed out roof edges for soffits and fascia boards
2x8s around floor perimeter with 2x4s between 2x8s and outside sheathing - To contain Deep Liter
Black Jack 57 Rubberized coating 1 x 2 Welded Wire around coop base
Sheathing is 1" rough cut Eastern Yellow Pine Front Windows & Ador1 Door installed.
Framed out windows and Ador1 Door Side window framed & Human Door Installed
North Side Back with open nesting box are
Roosts, Poop Board & Ramp (minus cleats) Temporary Run
Side Walls of Permanent Run (PT 2 x 4's resting on 4 x 6's)
Finally! The roof Vent holes in each gable
The completed run
The nesting boxes in progress and completed
Inside view An interested customer!
Just in time (the 2 smaller ones) The "Boss" approves
A little paint and some decorations
The Finished Product!
1. We plan to replace the slate on blocks stoop in front of the human door with a porch that will extend that whole side of the coop and wrap around the back under the bump out nesting boxes. I think this will give the coop a more finished look and will be better in sloppy weather.
2. This fall, we plan to put in 4 - 8' x 4' raised vegetable garden beds at the end of the run. If all goes according to plan, we will extend the run with tunnels around the raised gardens so they can benefit from the chickens "working" the gardens. I got this idea from a Mother Earth article.
Chickens in the Garden: Eggs, Meat, Chicken Manure Fertilizer and More
What we would have done differently / What we would do next time:
1. We built the run out of pressure treated wood so it would withstand the elements for many years. Later on I found out that the saw mill we bought the Eastern Yellow Pine from to build the coop had Tamarac wood. I purchased 12 - 8' lengths to build our raised vegetable gardens. I wish I had thought earlier and purchased this wood for the run. Tamarac is a hard wood that will outlast cedar and even black walnut when it comes to the elements.