My First Coop: Circ Du Poulet

By CharMac76, Jul 20, 2014 | Updated: Sep 13, 2015 | | |
  1. CharMac76
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    So here it is, finally complete, well...mostly. Having zero building skills I can't guarantee that anything is square or level in this structure. It is pretty sturdy though, so that has to count for something.There are so many things I would have done differently on this project, beginning with not buying so many baby chicks in the first place. Four was the magic number, but somehow I came home with 9! Chicken math at its finest. Now I have 8 hens (one was a cockerel), who should start laying any day now. I'm soo excited because a couple of them are starting to sing that special laying song, and their combs are starting to develop. I originally thought it would be so easy to just go out and purchase a coop with attached run large enough for 8 girls - WRONG! Either the prices were ridiculous, or there were too many things that I would need to do or add to make it perfect. So I scoured the coop section of this website, YouTube, books, you name it! I pulled out a notepad and began drawing a rough sketch of what I wanted. There were many cutting errors along the way which changed certain aspects of my design, but here it is!

    These are my original plans plus some modifications I made (due to cutting errors).
    - The roof actually slopes the opposite direction.
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    - I did not place the 2x4 in the bottom middle as pictured. I should have added a small door there to make cleaning out the rear easier. Lesson learned!
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    - This side actually has a clean out door. Don't ask! I think I just got saw happy or something.[​IMG]
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    - This side has nesting boxes vice a clean out door. Oh well...
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    - Original top view.
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    - The front does look like this...except switch the pop door with the maintenance door.[​IMG]
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    - This is the framing basically complete. I should have leveled the ground before starting, but at the time I was still planning to add wheels and make it movable. What a joke! The thing weighs a ton. The structure itself is 8' wide, 12' long and 6' high. The coop portion is 8' wide, 5' deep and 4' high to have some room under for the girls. Most of the wood was from the scrap wood pile at HomeDepot, and 70% off.
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    First set of plywood boards in.
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    Back and first windows in. My neighbor loaned me his circular saw and jigsaw (I think that's what its called). [​IMG]
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    Side cleaning door. This was not in my original plan, but I became saw happy.
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    Nesting boxes, without the lid.
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    Lid on! Plus my Lab mix is checking out the girls!
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    Primer coat on. Notice the roofing panels on in the wrong direction. Oops! This has caused some leaking problems, so I will have to fix this when I can afford new panels. The panels shown were free from a friend who replaced the ones on their patio.
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    Siding, made of free fence panels.
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    Siding with a different type of fence panels. Also free.
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    Painting in progress. It was supposed to be more peachy, but turned out a burnt orange.
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    I placed an anti-tunneling skirt around the perimeter. I'll decorate it with pavers and planters later.
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    Front view inside the run. I used poultry wire on the roof, but I'm having a problem with some critters getting in that way, so hardware cloth will go under the wire this weekend.
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    Linoleum down before the nesting boxes were installed. I got a huge piece of it for $20 at Lowes.
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    Homemade pop door. Hey, it works!
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    Roosting bars made out of 2x4's and some stair risers.
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    -This is the inside with the nesting box area uncovered.
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    Eggs! Dottie has been laying double yolked eggs this whole time. I'm not sure who the second layer is.[​IMG]
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    I've upgraded the waterer so that I can fill it from the outside.

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    My next upgrade will be to the feeding system. I give credit to SSL Dad on YouTube for giving me the idea for the feeder. I'm also going to expand the run later the summer since I have more chickens.

    Here it is! The feeder did not quite turn out how I wanted it too. I need to make a couple of changes to the openings to make it more "user friendly." The chickens are still using it, but I think they would use it more if the openings were larger on the side facing into to coop. We shall see! My run extension is next, and I better hurry up because the rainy season is almost here.

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Comments

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  1. terribob
    Looks like you did a really good job...great pictures of the coop...well done
  2. zarafa121
  3. CharMac76
    Thank you! The 2x4's should be pressure treated, but aren't not. I know that's probably going to bite me in the butt at some point. :)
  4. Chipper Chicken
    Nice fodder system, very clever use of a mini green house. Your ladies are going to love that as well! Nice! Are the 2x4's at the bottom contacting the ground pressure treated?
  5. CharMac76
    I have 8 hens, but using the 2 sq foot per bird rule, I could fit approximately 20 hens inside. There are two doors, plus the Pop Door, and I'm happy with the number of doors. They are not in the places I had originally planned, but all are functional. I wanted to be able to reach all parts of the coop without climbing into it, and with it being 5' deep, one in the front and one on the side is perfect. The ventilation is actually very good, but it also doesn't get too hot or cold here. I do not have any lights just yet, but I plan to add one eventually, along with an automatic door. The siding was just for looks.
  6. newbyintown
    I also meant to ask If you left the wood inside the coop unpainted and why the extra siding? Was that for insulation?
  7. newbyintown
    I really like this. It is similar to what we will build. Some questions, though. How many chickens to do have? I want to get 12 to 15. We have an old dog pen, 12 x 25. Will put hardware cloth on floor and "roof", fencing all around with hardware cloth 3 ft. up sides of fence. We will call this "the yard". The coop will be inside here, and I was thinking of making it 6 ft. tall, 4 ft. wide, and 8 ft. long. And have it 3 ft. off the ground so chicks can have a covered access to coop and also to hang food and water under there for when it rains. There are lots of trees for shade. I am rethinking the height, though. Might make a hinged top. And also decided to add nesting boxes outside of coop like yours. You seem to have a lot of doors. Are you happy with that many? Is your ventilation enough? Do you have lights and fans? And thanks for telling where you got your materials.
  8. Mountain Peeps
    Awesome! Love how spacy it is!
  9. Texas Chick
    If I were a chicken, I wouldn't mind living there. I like that you put windows in it.
  10. chickencrazy999
    Looks real nice and tidy

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