First off, let me say THANK YOU to everyone here who has pictures, plans, and tips for coops. I've spent countless hours pouring over all these the last few weeks in an effort to get everything we need in our new coop.
After deciding to start small with only 4 chicks in late March, we've suddenly found ourselves with 4 girls about to start laying (the original 4), 5 laying hens, and a rooster. (Chicken Math!!) They live in the coop that was already built and ready to go. We also have 13 4 week old chicks living on the back porch and rapidly outgrowing their brooder. We knew we were going to have to build a second coop, and fast! My husband is very handy and knowledgeable about these things - thank God! We decided to construct a 10 x 10 covered area. This would cover the new coop - to be 8 x 4 - and part of the new run. Hubby cut and erected 4 sturdy cedar poles and began constructing the roof. I found a great design for a raised 8 x 4 coop and made a few changes, so we were ready to go.
Then I discovered Lavender Orps. And Chocolate Orps. And Cuckoo Orps. We now have 10 more chicks on the way, so our planned 8 x 4 coop is going to be a bit small. After rethinking the issue, we decided to enclose the entire 10 x 10 area to make a larger hen house. The run will be an additional 10 x 10, a small portion of which will be covered. My dear husband has been a trooper and a great sport through this. We are almost finished enclosing the outside walls. Once finished, we will add the finishing touches inside - roosts, nesting boxes, etc., and PAINT! We wanted to reuse or recycle as many materials as possible, and DH promises me this reused tin will look fabulous once it's washed and painted. Fingers crossed!
This is the front of the coop. The storm door, tin, and windows were salvaged from DH's old house that burned a few years ago. Note the wide overhangs on either side.
This side faces what will be the new run. There is about a 4' overhang that will extend over the run, offering extra shade and cover from bad weather. There are identical windows on each side to allow for lots of ventilation and fresh air. We will be replacing the window screens with hardware cloth.
For now we've decided to leave the rafters open. Come winter we will add insulation and close this area in.
Facing the back wall. A poop board will be placed where the 2 x 4 runs with 2 roosts above that. We are also going to add a door at the level of the poop board so I can easily clean from outside as needed.
My wonderful hubby waving as he finishes installing the second window. I love that man!!
And finally, what neighborhood would be complete without curious neighbors?! For anyone who followed the "Complainer" thread recently, the black hen front and center is Gertrude. As usual, she's surrounded by her "Groupies."
As the title says, this is a work in progress. I'll post more pics as we complete each step. We will be using nipple waterers in both the run and the hen house. We also plan to add a PVC feeder system. I will post more pictures as we complete these steps.
And PAINT - we're going to PAINT!! Color suggestions anyone?
UPDATE - SUNDAY 8/3/14
Worked all afternoon trying to finish up, but didn't quite make it. We got the small doors leading to the run built and installed, put up the poop board, built and installed a hinged door that will allow me to easily clean the poop board from outside, and got most of the siding up. The only things remaining are a few small openings around rafters that need to be covered and two small pieces of siding left to go up. That means that my growing chickies will have to wait another week before moving into their new hen house. At least that will give me time to cover the poop board with vinyl, do some painting, and put up the feeders and nipple watering system. Maybe DH will be able to sneak home one evening to help finish up with the other things. (Have I mentioned that I Love that man?!)
It's too dark for pictures tonight. I'll catch them up ASAP.
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