Adding a second floor ?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Temp, Jul 29, 2014.

  1. Temp

    Temp In the Brooder

    Jul 20, 2014
    My chicken house is a little marginal size wise for my 12 pullets (50 sq ft). Right now it is not a problem as they are only 10 weeks old and have a outside run. My concern is this coming winter, it gets cold here often below 0 F and we are in a windy location. There are days when it is just not fit for man nor beast to be outside for long.
    As I have a tad over 6' of ceiling height I am toying with the idea of adding a second level in perhaps 1/2 of the space. This would allow me to enter the coop for feeding cleaning and such but would give the birds another 25 sq ft to spread out in on nasty days. The only down side I see is that they may treat the space as a roost since it would be higher than the roosts they are using.This would be a bad thing as it would be the equivalent of roosting on the floor and sitting in their own poop.
    Just wondering if anyone else has tried something like this and how it worked?
  2. iwiw60

    iwiw60 Crowing

    Jan 27, 2014
    Central Oregon
    Me personally? Bad idea I fear. You're going to have chicken poop everywhere! The main thing to remember with chickens is even during the most brutal of winter weather they need ventilation. Can you just imagine all 12 of them (who will be full-size by winter!) cooped up in that small of a space? The humidity in there from the warmth of them will be will be a recipe for disaster and illness.

    If having 12 birds is your magic number you should most likely be re-thinking your coop right now while the weather is good. Me? I'd be building another coop...for 12 birds it would have to be a minimum of 90 sq.ft.
  3. RJSorensen

    RJSorensen Chicken George

    I have often pondered the concept you pose here, and it is tempting for sure. But they will most likely want to roost up there and that won't do. On the topic of space per bird, the rule of thumb on BYC is 4 square feet per bird in the coop and 10 square feet in the run. So 12 x 4 = 48 square feet in the coop. If your coop is 10 x 5 or some number to equal 50 square feet, it should work. More is always better, but we have what we have.

    For more space in the coop you could see if you can or could do a window seat type addition to the floor level. Or even a chicken tunnel to another building, need not be fancy. Feed in one, roost and nest in the other, or a combination that suites your liking.

    Best to you and your birds,


    Please take the time to read this link,
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2014
  4. Temp

    Temp In the Brooder

    Jul 20, 2014
    Thanks for the input, actually my second thought was your suggestion of a second building. My coop is just over 6' wide inside and 8.5' long, I have a old pickup cap that is about 6x8 that I can use for a roof and I would build some short walls to sit it on.If I screen the rear hatch door I would be able to leave it open in all but the very worst weather. It would still be marginal as far as space but it would be cheap with the added benefit of being able to move it completely out of the way for cleaning in the spring, this would allow me to scoop up a winters worth of poop and bedding with the tractor bucket. I feel I did a good job providing ventilation in my existing house as I have a large screened operable window and a 6' x 5" screened vent at the ceiling on the opposite side.I may add a small electric fan for winter use that draws the air from near floor level. This is a common practice in dairy barns as pulling air from near floor level will remove moisture without exhausting all of the warmth.

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