Advice needed on coop location

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by saxet, Jun 2, 2010.

  1. saxet

    saxet Chirping

    140
    1
    99
    Jun 2, 2010
    TX
    Hello,
    On this nice and hot day in the mid nineties, with our usual 97% humidity, I was running coop designs through my head again. This site has already helped narrow my options down, but part of what it would end up looking like will indeed still depend on the coop location. I have options.
    Living in deep woods here in Eastern Texas, I will have to try to make sure that any coop is predator proof. Most feathered and furry things that love chicken dinners can be found and have been spotted around my place. I fear that means that the coop will have to be, for a large part, enclosed, so heat will be an issue. Summers long and hot, winters have frost, but mostly not dramatic.
    I would like to place a coop not too far from the house, so I can lock chickens up at night. I am not sure how much to seek light or rather avoid the sun and heat.
    Option # 1. direct light from the north. Obviously no sun that way. Decidious trees south, and west, half sunny on the eastern side. Run area wooded and trees would be inside the run. Most shady spot.
    Option #2. Direct sun from the south. Shaded on the north side, shaded on the west, direct sun on the east side. Run area wooded and trees would be inside the run. Sun much of the day.
    Option #3. Direct light from the north, some sun from the south, mostly shaded from the west, direct sun on the east side. Run area wooded and trees would be inside the run. Smallest run capacity.
    Option #4. Direct sun from the south, no cover at the north, direct sun from the west, shaded from the east.
    Run area wooded and trees would be inside the run.
    Option 1 and 3 have smaller run capacities, but still 15 by 20 or more. Option 2 and 4 could give access to a wooded strip between a pasture and a yard, that with some moderate fencing can turn into a 100 + ft long, 20 foot wide 'run' area. Free range will not be an option due to the other critters that own me.
    Other locations could be considered if I knew what to ideally plan for?
    Help.................
     
  2. squeakyballs

    squeakyballs Songster

    1,693
    13
    178
    Feb 7, 2009
    Tucson, AZ
    Option # 1. direct light from the north. Obviously no sun that way. Decidious trees south, and west, half sunny on the eastern side. Run area wooded and trees would be inside the run. Most shady spot.
    Option #2. Direct sun from the south. Shaded on the north side, shaded on the west, direct sun on the east side. Run area wooded and trees would be inside the run. Sun much of the day.
    Option #3. Direct light from the north, some sun from the south, mostly shaded from the west, direct sun on the east side. Run area wooded and trees would be inside the run. Smallest run capacity.
    Option #4. Direct sun from the south, no cover at the north, direct sun from the west, shaded from the east.
    Run area wooded and trees would be inside the run.
    Option 1 and 3 have smaller run capacities, but still 15 by 20 or more. Option 2 and 4 could give access to a wooded strip between a pasture and a yard, that with some moderate fencing can turn into a 100 + ft long, 20 foot wide 'run' area. Free range will not be an option due to the other critters that own me.
    Other locations could be considered if I knew what to ideally plan for?


    I think that option 1 sounds like your best bet. You are going to want LOTS of shade during the summer, I think that is more important than sunshine during the winter. I mean, it'll still be light.

    Option 2 sounds too sunny, 3 sounds too small (chickens are addicting!), and 4 sounds awful with all the sun during the afternoon.

    Option two sounds like the second most tempting, simply because of the wooded 100' run you can add in the future. I think it is the best one if you can put a shade tarp on top of a section of the coop or something like that. [​IMG]

    Don't forget to really look into how to keep predators out, not a lot of people realize that chicken wire doesn't cut it and that critters will dig.

    Anyways, good luck! I'm sure it will be awesome no matter what.
     
  3. saxet

    saxet Chirping

    140
    1
    99
    Jun 2, 2010
    TX
    [​IMG] Thank you TucsonTofu! I was actually leaning towards option 4. Glad that someone in a(n even more) unforgiving hot climate is telling me to move under the shade, not away from it.
    You are right about the fence, of course, and got me thinking about that now. [​IMG] The pasture side of what could be a huge chicken run is fenced with horse fencing, 5 foot high, 1 x 3 inch (or so) wire. I will have to add the same to the other side of the run, but half should be there, IF that would work? It would be very hard to add an apron to all the future length, since part of that fence is sporting a 'nice' thick layer of honeysuckle. If I need to add a separate fence inside that area, I am sure I would not end up with the 100 + foot that I had in mind. Due to the trees inside that area, I cannot top it either. Should I just opt for a small but very secure run? Or should I live dangrously and large, with a sturdy coop to lock them up in at night when the critters some out?
     
  4. chics in the sun

    chics in the sun Songster

    1,920
    22
    161
    Apr 1, 2010
    St.Petersburg
    Can you enclose the big run on the top? Don't forget Hawks and other predators from the sky. And I agree that the best option is the one that provides the most shade, as chickens are more tolerant of cold than of heat.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by