Are egg gathering exterior door/hatches worth doing?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by kiwiegg, Oct 21, 2010.

  1. kiwiegg

    kiwiegg Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 7, 2009
    I'm wondering as I modify the 8x8 walk in coop from "...for Dummies" if I should leave the egg door out of my design. I realize it's a convenience thing but in a very cold winter climate (like mine) and a potentially windy location (like mine is) could I run into draft issues for my girls? Is it really a lot more work walking through the door? I feel very fortunate to ask these things before I build! Thanks.
  2. edselpdx

    edselpdx Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 10, 2008
    Portland, OR
    I like being able to go get eggs without putting on my coop shoes. I wouldn't do without an egg door again.
  3. rungirl

    rungirl Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 7, 2010
    Columbus, Ohio
    I wondered the same thing when I planned my coop. I opted not to build an egg door in it. My thinking was since I need to go out there to check feed, water and general well-being anyway, what good does it do to have an egg door? If I go out there to get eggs, I want to do a quick check and make sure everything else is OK.
  4. sotelomary

    sotelomary Chillin' With My Peeps

    The egg door is very convenient for me. I would not do without it. When I have to go away, I leave plenty of feed and automatic water. All my neighbor has to do is unlock the door in the mornings and lock them back in at dusk, and gather the eggs. He is very grateful that he doesn't have to get poop in his shoes! Soon I hope to have an automatic door to make it even easier for him.

  5. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    I built them and I don't use them. I've already got my dirty shoes on when I go down there so there is no benefit in not going in ther coop. I like going in to check on food, water, and general well-being anyway. There have been a few times I was glad I went in to check. Once I had a dead hen laying on the floor. Another time and in a totally separate incident I found a black snake in the coop. Then there was the time I found a possum in the coop just before I locked them up for the night.

    You can handle it with construction techniques, but if they are not done right they can be weak spots, allowing rain, wind, or predators in.

    If you have young children that might collect the eggs and a mean rooster, it may be good to have a safer way for them to collect the eggs, but I like to look in there.
  6. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    Oh, we just like flipping latches and lifting hatches and looking for eggs, hoping to see 'em nestled in the nest box, awaiting our gathering. The pop-out nest-boxes conserve floor space, too, in smaller coops. So, if they're popped out, why not gather eggs from the outside?

    Plus, it disturbs the hens less, reduces the amount of poo on shoes, and shows off your expertise in constructing a fancier coop.

    In my case, my chickens free range, so I wouldn't be checking on chickens in the coop, anyway, until head count time each night.
  7. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    If you get REALLY cold it is probably not the greatest idea unless there's a really compelling reason (chicken-phobic children need to be able to collect eggs, or you often stop to collect eggs between house and car on your way to fancy-dress parties [​IMG])

    One option if you are undecided but don't mind the work of building it is to build it, then weatherstrip and seal it solid for the winter (collect eggs only from inside the coop), and then decide in Spring whether you want to recommisssion the exterior-access hatch or not [​IMG]

    Good luck, have fun,

  8. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    No way I would bother with them. Just a place for drafts and leaks and things to fix. No its not more work walking in the door; it's more work to build something like that, never mind maintain it. It's already extra work to build external nests and keep them sealed, in my mind. I want to go in the coop anyway, to check on things. When the weather is bad I certainly want to go in and would never use an egg door. I have a coop big enough to walk in (as you do) because I want to go in. I'd be afraid I'd just get bit by a spider or something.

    But then I've never actually built a nest box; mine are all scrounged. Work fine, and several are portable.

    If I bought a farm with a coop with external nest boxes and they didn't already leak, I'd turn them into supply cabinets.
  9. kiwiegg

    kiwiegg Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 7, 2009
    Thanks everyone - wow what great input. Just to clarify, the plans call for a panel that opens up (it's flush with exterior wall, not the boxes that jut out) and I'm leaning towards leaving it out of my plan. I also think that I'm going to scrounge up a proper exterior door for the coop, and not make the one shown. I'm going to insulate the coop so I imagine a door I make may defeat the purpose!
  10. 70monte

    70monte Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 5, 2009
    Aurora, MO
    Quote:My coop has the external egg door that is flush with the exterior door and the way its built, there are no drafts. The roosts are in front of the nest boxes so its more conveinant for me to check eggs from outside than have to duck under the roosts or take the roost boards out.


BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by