3 hens, coop info needed.

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by littlechick1005, Jan 28, 2013.

  1. littlechick1005

    littlechick1005 Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 28, 2012
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    I started out with 10 beautiful hens, gave 4 to a friend, now im down to 6. I clean their pen out weekly but the dust is simply too much to handle for the other farm animals, im hearing coughing and seeing runny noses from the goats..I didnt realize chickens created such a dust mess! They are lovely hens and im very attatched to them but 3 more are leaving today so I can try and get the dust under control, im hoping less hens will help this. My birds are kept indoor in a horse stall of their very own and have been their since they were 4 months of age. They will be a year in April.
    This Spring id like to build them a very small chicken coop in which they will have an outdoor pen attatched. Three hens is my maximum #, I have no plans to ever get more than 3 so id like it to be an easy to manage coop that is preditor safe. Do you recommend I have one built? or would it be just as easy and cost effective to purchase a prefab coop?
    I would love to see some of your small coops to get an idea of what might be a good size, safe, cost effective and easy to manage coop.

    Please share your thoughts! and photos if you have them :) ...thank you.
     
  2. AVintageLife

    AVintageLife Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You didn't mention what you use for their bedding but I have an 8X8 coop with five pullets and two cockerals. I started with wood shavings only, found them to be very dusty. Here on BYC, another member posted her success in keeping down the dust by using Lucerne Gold #1. It's forage feed for horses, a blend of timothy, oat, alfalfa, molasses-free. I tried it and it works great. Now I use a combination of the wood shavings and the Lucerne Gold and there is so much less dust than before, plus it smells so nice and the hens love it in their nesting boxes. Also easier to compost than all wood shavings, which take so long to break down.
     
  3. littlechick1005

    littlechick1005 Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 28, 2012
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    Yes I use pine wood shavings, same with the horses and such...Good info! I never would have thought of it, I think we fed that at one time to our old horse lol...Id love to give it a try...my nose is burning and im still hacking up brown dust and its been several hours since I dusted their stall down...yuck. I imagine its the same cost as a bag of pine shavings? I dont remember :/ ..its def worth looking into! Thank you.
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2013
  4. chfite

    chfite Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Moving the coop outdoors where the dust would not be a problem.

    Chris
     
  5. AVintageLife

    AVintageLife Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I switched to the Lucerne because the dust was killing my sinuses. Unfortunately, the Lucerne does cost more than the wood shavings. I think it was $11-12/bag (at Agway). I have a poop board under the roost so the coop floor/litter stays pretty clean and as I mentioned before, when I clean it all out in the spring it'll compost better than just wood shavings.
     
  6. noahsmom

    noahsmom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If it were me and I never planned going over 3 hens then I would just buy a prefab coop and a run connected to it already.
    Just remember the run needs to be at the very least 30 sq ft since each bird in a run needs to have 10 sq ft per bird. Then any safety things I had to do like hardware cloth sides, or make a apron for the bottom then I would do. Try your local craigslist to, I've seen small coops & runs on my own. If not their are plenty of small coop/run ideas on here and you could build your own, its really up to you and how personal you want to make everything.

    Good Luck!
     

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