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Breeder pen setup

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by BeardedChick, Jan 2, 2009.

  1. We are going to build an addition to our shedrow this Spring, and will add on 8x12 for poultry. I'd like to section it into breeder pens.

    Would 8x3 (4 pens) be an OK size or will 8x4 (3 pens) be better? I'll most likely have a few trios or quads.

  2. tim_TX

    tim_TX Songster

    Jun 4, 2008
    By pen, do you mean indoor housing or outdoor runs? The general rule of thumb is 2-4 sq feet per bird indoors and 10 outdoors. I always lean toward more space in each, about 5 sq feet per bird indoors and 15 or more outdoors. This tends to reduce the number and severity of conflicts as well as making for a more sanitary environment, the latter of which is especially important for hatching eggs. Excrement on the floor or ground invariably ends up on the eggs and can cause bacterial contamination thereby negatively impacting your hatching success.
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2009
  3. That would be the indoor space - each pen will have an outdoor run area, also. There's room for a free range area that they could rotate through as well.

    Each 8x3 breeder pen would be 6' of floor space for each bird (assuming there's a quad in the pen).
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2009
  4. tim_TX

    tim_TX Songster

    Jun 4, 2008
    You'll be fine.
  5. Will 8x3 be too narrow for comfort? I wasn't sure about getting in there to clean, collect eggs, etc.
  6. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    It'll be tight, especially for turning around while carrying anything. Too tight for you personally? Mock it up and see. Get some cardboard or plywood or whatever you can find, and mock up a 3' wide corridor and then a 4' wide corridor. This doesn't have to be in the coop, btw. Go in there and pretend you are cleaning out litter, carrying a waterer in and out, etc etc. See how it feels to you. That's what really matters anyhow [​IMG]

    Good luck, have fun,

  7. cmom

    cmom Hilltop Farm

    Nov 18, 2007
    My Coop
    I think it would be rather tight. Bigger is better.

  8. onthespot

    onthespot Deluxe Dozens

    Mar 29, 2008
    Riverside/Norco, CA
    three feet is hard to rake in. Four is way better. I have flights for lovebird flocks and some are four feet wide, and some are three feet wide. The three foot wide ones, I just hate them, but I got them for cheap so I keep using them. The birds don't mind, it's just me that hates them.
  9. Thanks - 4' or better it is.

  10. geareduplyn

    geareduplyn Songster

    Jun 2, 2008
    Salley SC
    I have some 3'X6' breeder pens with a 3'X12' outside run. They are very adequate for a trio or quartet. The only drawback that I can see is when I clean I have to back out of the pen with the manure, but I have to do the same in the 4' wide pens also.

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