Welcome to my BYC page! I'm Amy and I live in San Diego with my S.O., 2 tween girls (ack!), 4 dogs, 5 cats, 3 rats, 2 rabbits, 3 horses, 1 orphaned baby mouse that we're hand raising, and 13 chickens. As of 9/23/11, my coop is almost done and my teenagers are ready to move into their own digs. Here's how I got here:
My coop is framed! This was a big day - I'd never done any carpentry like this before. I took a woodworking class about 10 years ago - that's as much experience as I've had. It's 8'X10' with 2X4's spaced 16" apart, framed for two crank windows, an attic vent, a run door and a front door. What you can't see: flooring is 3/4" plywood on joists attached to skids on gravel. And everything's squared and level!
And now my coop has siding (or at least some of it) - yep, that's me, holding my trusty circular saw. It's a Ryobi with a laser line - love that thing.
Here is my roost area. I've got it raised and the dropping area completely enclosed. I want to put sand in the coop but thinking I might put shavings in the dropping area because I like the smell. I've got the roosts on a frame that's hinged to the wall. I've got a hook set up so that I can hook the roost frame up while I clean out underneath.
I put the roosts all on the same level because everyone always wants the top roost - this hopefully will cut down on the arguing LOL.
Here's the coop in July, 2011. That green color is the same color as the siding on our house (our house has white trim). I've got crank windows for the cutouts on the sides (freebies on CL - sadly had to pay for the rest of the wood on my own).
And here are pix of the flock from a couple weeks ago.
Rocky (the wonder rooster), Professor and Ripley:
Sparkle, the surprise Splash Silkie:
Here's the coop as of the end of the day, Sept. 27.
September 28, 2011: Move In Day! I did the felt the day before (2 layers because the pitch is pretty low) and the shingles are finally up - it took all day! The coop doesn't have all the finishing touches on it:
I'm particularly fond of the flapping shingles - they even overlap the back! I also need to get the trim around the windows, but it's tight enough for chickens - and they sure need to come out. The coop is pretty well vented - it's just hard to see in this photo. There's an attic vent built into the run side of the coop. And that window is a crank window and there's a matching one directly across so both can be opened for cross ventilation.
One issue that I didn't anticipate: the laser-like focus of my dog Mollie on the chickens inside. I will be building a fence to keep her away from the henhouse. One issue that I did anticipate was that they'd have trouble getting up to their roosts - especially the silkies, which I hadn't intended to get but were so darned cute. Here's a photo showing the ladder I put in to make sure everyone could get up where they needed to go:
What you can't see is another ladder I placed underneath the roosts so that if any of the chickens accidently fall in, they can get back out! This is where the nesting boxes will go:
It's across from the roosts (probably pretty clear from the photos) but since the chickens won't be laying for another couple of months, I've got a little time - which is great, because I have to build a fence for the dog, then a run for the chickens currently inside the coop!
And speaking of the chickens inside the coop, here's their first foray into their new digs:
Surprise of surprises - it was the littlest chicken, Truffle (the black silkie) who was the bravest and boldest - she was the first one out of the coop! Of course I messed up on that shot - I was so excited that I moved and the photo is all blurry. Suffice to say that Rocky the Wonder Rooster was among the last out - he was hiding in the back of the cage behind all the girls...
Everyone is out! As of today (10/3) that kennel is still in the coop for their reassurance. I had wanted to put sand in the coop and the run, however, comparing the cost of buying sand and having it delivered vs. a package of shavings, I had to go with the shavings ... for now. Wish I lived close to a beach or lake...
And here are the suddenly much happier chickens, checking out their new digs. They've been flying around, chest bumping, chasing each other - the pecking order is being established!
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