Back to the drawing board for like the 5th time!

littlelune810

Chirping
Nov 6, 2015
106
4
58
Washington State
I think I am having too much fun in the planning process here. I keep changing my mind about which coop to build which leads to changes about which birds to get. Last week DH and I thought we had decided on The Garden Coop and getting about 4 or 5 standard sized chicks. Now after more careful consideration, thinking about the fact that we are renting, first timers with chickens, ease of use, etc etc... I think we will start smaller and build the Garden Ark chicken tractor.

http://www.thegardencoop.com/garden-ark-coop-plans.html

My hang up is that this tractor is so small. I would like to have at least 3 hens and I feel like 3 is pushing it with this coop... But then I'm wondering how many bantams I could fit in here? I know I could modify it to be bigger. Any thoughts on this? Help a newbie out!
 

Pork Pie

Flockwit
Premium Feather Member
6 Years
Jan 30, 2015
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Looking at the link, I would have thought that you could get 4-5 bantams in the coop for roosting purposes but the space outside the coop needs to be larger (assuming the run is part of the design) or ideally free range.

A shed is my personal favourite as a coop.

Ct
 

littlelune810

Chirping
Nov 6, 2015
106
4
58
Washington State
Looking at the link, I would have thought that you could get 4-5 bantams in the coop for roosting purposes but the space outside the coop needs to be larger (assuming the run is part of the design) or ideally free range.

A shed is my personal favourite as a coop.

Ct


Thanks. The run is attached. It is a tractor so I plan to move it every day so they have fresh grass and bugs to scratch at. Do you think 3 standard hens is too much? I'm thinking to make it a foot wider. The plans are for a 3w x 6d x 4h. I was thinking 4 x 6 x4.
 

littlelune810

Chirping
Nov 6, 2015
106
4
58
Washington State
The other question I have is this: I would like to let the hens out to roam the yard a bit each day. We have 4ft chain link fence, is this sufficient to keep the chickens in out yard? No neighbor dogs to worry about, I just want the chickies to stay out of the neighbors yards.
 

Folly's place

Enabler
9 Years
Sep 13, 2011
23,131
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southern Michigan
I'm not impressed at all; too small, not predator proof, and horrible to clean out. How about a child's playhouse or shed? Craigslist? Or a hoop coop with added hardware cloth. You probably don't have lots of ice and snow, but you will have predators! Think larger, walk-in convenience, and safety. Prefab coops are none of the above. Mary
 

littlelune810

Chirping
Nov 6, 2015
106
4
58
Washington State
I'm not impressed at all;  too small, not predator proof, and horrible to clean out.  How about a child's playhouse or shed?  Craigslist?  Or a hoop coop with added hardware cloth.  You probably don't have lots of ice and snow, but you will have predators!  Think larger, walk-in convenience, and safety.  Prefab coops are none of the above.  Mary

Thanks. Its not a prefab coop I will be build this. I received some free building materials so I would rather build something so I can save some money. I have never built anything before so I would like to work from plans. Can you suggest an alternate? It would need to be at least somewhat mobile for the future since we are renting. Thanks!
 

yyz0yyz0

Songster
9 Years
May 2, 2012
618
115
194
The other question I have is this: I would like to let the hens out to roam the yard a bit each day. We have 4ft chain link fence, is this sufficient to keep the chickens in out yard? No neighbor dogs to worry about, I just want the chickies to stay out of the neighbors yards.

I've only had chickens for 4 years, but from my experience 4ft fencing would not be enough to stop birds from flying over to explore the other side. I have a run made with 6ft kennel panels, I got a rooster to add to my flock and the first time I let them out to free range after getting the roo, I found him perched up on top of the 6ft tall run.
 

teria

Chirping
Apr 26, 2015
168
23
73
Salem Utah
A child's playhouse or something about that size would be ideal for four chickens. If you are going to try to keep them in with a four foot fence, though, you will want to keep a wing clipped on each chicken, and plan on them flying over from time to time. We have a 6 foot cedar fence, and our two leghorns were able to fly up and perch on it with just a little help from a playhouse we kept a bit too close to the fence. If they really want to get up on the fence, they will find a way. Still, our chickens haven't tried since then, so, maybe yours will be good about staying in the yard. If you are doing mostly chicken tractor ranging, and you are out to monitor them when they free range, you may be fine with the fence you have.
 

littlelune810

Chirping
Nov 6, 2015
106
4
58
Washington State
I've only had chickens for 4 years, but from my experience 4ft fencing would not be enough to stop birds from flying over to explore the other side.  I have a run made with 6ft kennel panels, I got a rooster to add to my flock and the first time I let them out to free range after getting the roo, I found him perched up on top of the 6ft tall run.


Thank you! That's what I thought.
 

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