Heading out to get logs for the coop. First pack a trail. It helps to stay upright.
Find some nice trees
Pack side trails to the trees. The key is to keep all your log skiding trails downhill and as straight as possible. I have learned it is well worth your time to wait over night so they are hard. If the weather is over -10 C don't even bother trying to skid logs with a skidoo.
I have a Lewis winch that attaches to my chainsaw to move the logs to the sled and trail. Winch slowly and don't get them in a bind.
2 logs ready for their ride.
Waiting for warmer weather
We made poured walls for the foundation. The foundation forms were made of reclaimed insulated rim joist. The inside forms are a permanent part of the coop. They will help insulate the foundation walls as concrete has zilch R value. They are attached to the foundation by bolts place through them at intervals and into the foundation. Once the foundation hardens they won't go anywhere.
We poured concrete into the foundation and then kept dumping in rocks. Living on the Canadian shield we have more rocks then soil. If you need some rocks come visit and I will give you all you want
Inside the foundation is 12'x12'. Once the foundation is finished. I measure all the logs butts and tips for the average butt and tip. This makes log selection easy and keeps you out of trouble. It also helps to know exactly what sizes of logs you have remaining. I highly recommend "the Log Construction manual" if you are interested in building with natural logs. I have used his methods and formulas for all my buildings and they work beautiful. His book is far and superior to any other log building book out there and I have many of them.
My log blueprint is the piece of plywood, doesn't matter if it lays out in the weather.
Walls going up. I use skid poles and a winch to get logs up on the wall.
Scribing the next log. Logs alternate from butt to tip. This photo is actually from the house as I didn't have any of scribing the chicken house. I use an auto levelling scribe. Started out with a Lee Valley scribe and very quickly realized I was getting no where fast. Most scribes are not auto levelling and must constantly be adjusted and fiddled with. A hug time loss and frustration. I highly recommend an auto levelling scribe for log building it will pay for itself with one building. Also make sure it uses markers or high pressure pens.
This is what a corner looks like form the inside. You can see that the logs are not tight. This is called under/over scribing. The corner notches are scribed smaller then the long grooves. As the logs shrink and settle the long grooves end up tight. All scribes are saddle notches, round notches do not stay tight as the logs shrink.
Cutting a long groove
Once I get up higher I don't take the time and hassle of taking the logs down off the wall for cutting. Just be careful running that saw.
Almost to joist level
Fitting joist. Sawed one edge of logs flat with chainsaw and notched into walls with square notches.
Attic floor is more of the reclaimed insulated rim joist.
12/12 pitch roof and a dormer so there will be storage and possibly a small mommy get away in the winter for my long suffering wife.
Side and back view. Windows have 1/2" hardware cloth and over that steel panels with a hex cut out shape. We have predators from bears to weasels and eagles, not to mention lots of free roaming dogs. Roofing will be finished in spring after I haul it in on the winter road. Notice the settle spaces over the windows and doors. With log construction I figure for 1/2" of settling per foot. 1/4" for log shrinkage and 1/4 for settling. The window and door cut outs have a 2x2 notched into the ends with the frames screwed to them. Nothing can be attached directly to the logs that would hamper shrinkage. As the walls shrink and settle they slide down the notched in 2x2 without causing the walls to hang up.
Front view of coop
Trap nest build:
Basic idea for these nests came from the trap nest forum on backyard chickens as well as a few other ideas from other web sites. I modified it to suit my purposes. Thanks to all who posted pictures of trap nests on the forum and posted a wealth of trap nest info.
Inside diametre 12"x12"x 20" long, this is a smaller unit for the small chicken coop. Coop above actually has a 5 nest unit.
Cutting out fronts and doors
Fronts 12.75" wide, 13" high
Door openings 8.75" wide x 9" high
Seat belt webbing for hinges, cheap and readily available.
Doors cut out, bottom piece is 1/4" plywood top 1/2 cut out from front.
Top piece 5.5" high x 8.5" wide
Bottom 1/4" piece, 3.5" high x 10.5" wide
Frame around door is 2" wide, if I make more nests I will make side frames wider so only one chicken at a time can enter door
I have had a few times when chickens pushed in together. I believe a narrower door would eliminate this.
Used 1/2" staples to hold it together.
Used hammer to pound staples in deeper
On 1/4" bottom door panel peen them flush as they stick out on opposite side
Small screw 4" down from top of door for lower panel to rest on when nest is "set"
Door stapled to nest box
Simple turnbuckles on bottom to hold door in place. 2x2 attached to front bottom flush with front of doors.
Doors flip up for cleaning. On the other trap nests I made I added a 1x2 on floor of the nest to make a 12x12" nesting area. I did not add it to these but can add later if necessary.
Nest in open but not set position. A simple screw for the door to rest on works fine.
In the coop there is a roost attached to the front for the birds to stand on before entering the nest boxes
It was suggested that I add maps showing where we live.
We live in Poplar Hill First Nation, NW Ontario.
Accessible by air in the summer, or boat if you don't mind rapids, portaging and a very hard days work. Skidoo in the winter and in February and March winter road.
Closest "roaded" town is Red Lake, Ontario. 1/2 hour plane flight south, 3-5 hours via winter road, or 6+ hours via skidoo or boat.
Up close google picture of Poplar
Poplar from the air
Winter road across the lakes and bush
Keeping water thawed
Pipe feeders, no waste, making a larger one with a central barrel and multiple legs when get parts
Chicken door, Outside have an eye with rope attached to raise and lower from inside.