A few questions from a newbie

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Pequena Bandada, Jun 30, 2010.

  1. Pequena Bandada

    Pequena Bandada Small Flock

    Jun 13, 2010
    Our coop is mostly finished, but I still have a few questions about basic things. Thanks in advance for your expertise and answers!

    1. How far from the floor of the coop should we put roosts for standard breeds? The coop is only about 4 feet tall.

    2. Do I need a metal feeder and waterer inside the coop as well as a set outside? Our local chicken supply place told me water and feed outside only, but it seems like I'm hearing the opposite here.

    3. Does a coop need windows? We have three inch ventilation channels on all sides of the coop where the roof meets the walls that let in a fair amount of light. But should we also need a few small windows?

  2. can't get enough chicken

    can't get enough chicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 30, 2010
    this is from a website!!

    Strategy # 5. - Light Source:

    If you want a good source of light and warmth for your chickens during the cold months of the year and a solid source of ventilation during the hot months, then be sure to install the chicken coop windows facing the southside where they will receive direct sunlight throughout the day.

    On another note, if your goal is to raise chickens that will produce great eggs all year round, then you should look into an electrical source of light. You should be able to easily install an electrical light at the height of the chicken coop's ceiling which will help keep your chickens warm and help them lay better chicken eggs throughout the year. One ceiling light should be enough for a small scale chicken coop, for larger chicken coops though, try to install one electrical ceiling light per every 30 - 40 feet.

    This website has a few helpful things so check it out! http://ezinearticles.com/?How-to-Bu...lements-on-Building-a-Chicken-House&id=477219
  3. TK421

    TK421 Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 24, 2010
    Central TX
    1. Your roosts should be higher than your nestboxes, but not directly above them. Other than that, it should be at least 12-16" below the ceiling of the coop.

    2. The debate about food and water inside vs outside is still ongoing. You could find thousands of posts to support whichever version you want. I know because I just finished reading hundreds of them. The only theme is that water is critical. If it freezes often where you are, consider keeping water inside so it doesn't freeze. Personally, I keep both outside because I have a small elevated coop (4x3) and I don't want either to spill and make a mes inside the coop.

    3. You don't have to have windows, but many people use windows to generate heat in the winter and decrease temps in the summer. My coop has 1" ventilation gaps at the top and no windows, but I live in central TX where the temps are nice year-round. Everything I read said that temperature is much less important than controlling drafty air.

    Regarding daylength, I have no desire to provide artificial/extra light to stimulate laying. They should spend their time in the run if they want sunshine. That, and I would have to run an extension cord across my yard to the coop.... Not gonna happen!
  4. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    IMO, give the chickens at least 18 inches of headroom, so there's your roost question.
    Where you feed is up to you and your own situation. Will your chickens be let out early each morning? Then they don't need feed/water inside. But if they don't get let out until 10 am, then maybe you should. Some folks have issues with wild birds coming down and eating a lot of feed, and keep them inside because of that. Feed left outside can attract rodents, but that can happen inside as well... So it's really based on your personal situation.
    Windows are GREAT!!! I hate a gloomy coop. And it's REALLY nice in the summer time, to let lots of ventilation through. Cut out an opening or two and nail hardware cloth over them. You can always screw a piece of plexiglass over the opening(s) come winter time...simple, and the chickens will enjoy the extra light in winter, the extra breeze in summer... [​IMG]
  5. montanasandy

    montanasandy Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 11, 2010
    Potomac, Montana
    I don't leave my food outside in the run. (except the snacks I take them during the day) I leave their crumbles in the coop and they go up and down during the day if they want it. I don't know where you live, but there was an article in our paper yesterday (missoula, mt) about bears getting into chicken's area's because of food left outside in the run. So, I would be careful. [​IMG]

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