We are in the process of building an 8 X 10.5 ft hoop coop to move around the yard. We currently have 5 hens and I will be getting five more as soon as I get it finished (a friend has raised them for me since the shipment came in 3 days after my youngest daughter was born - 3 kids under 4 = whew!). From what I understand I don't need quite as much sq. footage since I am going to be moving it around... am I safe to go with that assumption? We live in central NC so the weather is hot and humid in the summers, and fairly mild in the winters (but we do get some cold spells (in the teens at night, 20's or 30's during the day) and snow periodically). I am going to cover the back half with a tarp and am not sure what else I need to do for it to be their permanent home. I will have several roosting areas made from natural branches (most likely), and 2 or 3 nesting boxes made out of plastic tubs or buckets or something equally light weight. Am I OK to leave it so open in the summer? I'll have it positioned for the best protection against wind and rain. What about winter? What can or should I do different? My current coop is about 2 years old - my husband transformed an old shed and added a small run area for Valentines Day. The more research I do, the more I realize it's not designed the best in the world and I want to make sure this one is better so that I can keep my chickens as happy and healthy as possible.