Blocking space above low roosts and ventilation?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by CanadaEh, Jun 21, 2018.

  1. CanadaEh

    CanadaEh Songster

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    I would like to make the best use of the interior coop space of (only) 8x8 shed coop, and I like the design shown in this https://www.backyardchickens.com/th...air-stepping-the-roost.1065008/#post-16217710 thread - with whole wall of brooder boxes under whole wall of same level roosts *except* for brooder top acting as a poop board and scooping/scrubbing/replacing daily job associated with it. I would rather pick it up with peach fork from the top of the deep litter or mix it in depending on how it goes.

    So I am thinking if I could swap roosts and brooders placement as shown in the picture attached.

    My back wall is normal gable shed wall 6' high to the rafters. My ventilation will be primarily in the open roof eaves and tops of the windows that open on 2 other walls - i.e. at the level of proposed brooder boxes or higher.

    And my question is: would putting the roosts so low at the end of the shed - about 2' high above 1' deep litter floor and 1' from the false ceiling created by brooder boxes would create too confined/muggy/cold space (only 3' high) or would it instead help with that magical "lots of ventilation but no drafts" even in harshest winters?
     

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  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

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    Chickens generally like to sleep on the highest spot available, which would be on top of those brooders. I'd expect them to ignore those roosts.

    Yours is a lot prettier than my set-up but in function it's pretty similar. I scrape mine anywhere from about once a week to maybe once every six weeks depending on chicken density and how damp the weather is. The way I can tell when to scrape mine is the smell. If I can smell it then i waited too long. Over the years I've gotten pretty good at knowing when that will be. You may find that you really don't need to be scrubbing it every day.

    If you feel you must use a pitch fork, try lowering your brooders to the floor (they will be harder for you to access) and build a box under your roosts that you can fill with litter. I'd support the roosts from the walls on the ends and get rid of those vertical supports anyway, they will just be in your way. In an 8x8 coop you may find that the handle of that pitch fork is fairly long so you might want to saw it shorter so you're not banging it into the walls or a window.

    Main Roosts.JPG
     
  3. CanadaEh

    CanadaEh Songster

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    sorry forgot to say I would block the space above the elevated brooder boxes (rafter space) with chicken wire and may be used it for storage. the entrances to nest boxes on other walls will be at ~1' from deep litter (compared to 2' high roosts). The space above nest boxes would be chicken wired and used for storage.

    I am trying to come up with poop-proof design (as to poop to only to land onto deep litter).

    You must have lots of cross ventilation for it to dry to get away with so infrequent maintenance (but it is still sound like lot of work compared to deep litter).

    My concern was however if putting brooder boxes above the roosts would impede the ventilation around roosts.

    would also like to clarify that is some other member picture/design that I would like to adopt with said modifications.
     
  4. PetesChicks

    PetesChicks Songster

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    Poop boards under the roost is very little maintenance. I have a mixture of sand & PDZ on my poop board (about 1/2 - 3/4 inch deep) and scoop it with a kitty litter scoop once a week, it takes about 10 minutes. The PDZ deeps it dry and makes it so it doesn’t smell.
     
  5. CanadaEh

    CanadaEh Songster

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    sorry, but I have been long subscriber to Deep Litter idea promising need of cleaning only once or maximum twice a year (fluffing it up occasionally or adding to it more often does sounds nearly as bad as replacing the poopy stuff) .
     
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  6. PetesChicks

    PetesChicks Songster

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    That’s up to you, do whatever works best for you. I do both - plenty if shavings on the floor of the coop, and about once a year cleaning it out. A few times a year I’ll add more shavings to it as they break down, but it’s a dry deep litter so that is slow. I don’t have to mix it up at all, the girls do that. The purpose of the poop board is to get rid of the main source of poop in the coop, the overnight stuff. In my opinion, that helps the coop stay cleaner longer, and smell free. There is no poop smell in my coop or run.

    Also, when I do clean the shavings out of the coop, they go straight into the run. That and grass from mowing the lawn (no fertilizer or pesticides) keep my deep litter going there also.

    Good luck in whichever you decide to do!
     
  7. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

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    That should work.
     

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