Arizona Coop Question

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by ChrystalGail, Aug 20, 2007.

  1. ChrystalGail

    ChrystalGail Songster

    Jun 13, 2007
    Casa Grande, AZ
    Okay, here it goes. I live in AZ where we have a 110*+ daytime temp and 80*+ nightime temp from about May to October. Then the winter (Nov. to April) daily average high is 75* with a low of 36*. For my coop I was going to do a fully covered (essential for our hot sun!) run with courigate metal panels on top that form a 7' high arch. I was going to build some perches off the ground for them to roost on and some nesting boxes to nest in. My question is, do they need a raised floor and completly surrounded (4 sided) building as a coop, or can I get away with 2 walled off sides with raised perches and raised nesting boxes for them to get off the "cold" ground?

    This is kinda what I'm working with...

    _________Sheet Metal Siding
    [ ]| |
    [ Metal ]|--Nest Boxes & |
    [ Shed ]| Perches |------5'Horse Fencing
    [_________]| |
    |----Door |
    4' welded wire |_____________|
    4' Welded wire fence

    The run is 14'x14' and I kinda just wanted to put the perches and nesting boxes in the corner where there wouldn't be much of a draft. Can I get away with that, or do I need to build an actual coop?

    Thanks for any advice!
  2. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    Doesn't metal get really hot in the sun?

    As for shelter. I think you could get away without a fully enclosed home for them. Mine choose to sleep outside on their house in their cage year long and do fine. They just eat lots of food when it's in the 30's, and finally decide to go inside if it is in the teens... does it get that cold there?
  3. kstaven

    kstaven Crowing

    Jan 26, 2007
    BC, Washington Border
    In the summer heat a dirt floor will keep the coop a lot cooler. Using straw or shavings in the winter will be a good insulator.

    When the temperatures drop a two sided enclosure will not give your chickens enough protection from the wind.

    Just my opimions.
  4. rufus

    rufus Crowing

    May 17, 2007
    Chrystal, we used to use corrugated tin on our chicken houses. The higher up the roof is, the cooler the shed is. We left the sides open as much as possible. You want the air to flow through it taking out the heat. We never put a floor in them, but we had chicken wire under the roosts so that preditors could not reach the hens from underneath. Use the larger wire so that the poop falls through. We could rake it out every week so that ammonia would not build up.

    If I was building a chicken coop today, I would also have a two or three inch sheet of styrofoam sandwiched between the sheet metal and plywood for the roof. That would make it a lot cooler.

    We used to irrigate the chicken yards every two weeks, but never let the water into the coop area. The coops were surrounded by three or four yards. We would close off all but one and rotate them so that we always had lots of bermuda grass for the hens.

    Also, we always made sure that there was lots of shade. We had pecan trees and mulberry trees in the chicken yards.

    Water was piped in and we had floats that made sure there was alway fresh water in a shady area.

  5. ChrystalGail

    ChrystalGail Songster

    Jun 13, 2007
    Casa Grande, AZ
    Just to be a little clearer... At the two open ends of the arched tin, I was goint to put netting or chicken wire, so there would be air flow to remove the heat. Plus the roof is goung to be about 7 feet high. The very lowest we see temps here are the low 30s at night in the winter.

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