Building a coop for silkies. GOT QUESTIONS ?? Please Help !!

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by kbreak, Feb 14, 2012.

  1. kbreak

    kbreak Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 1, 2011
    Columbia, MS
    About to start building a coop for my silkies. How much sq. ft per silkie? I know it should be less than a standard hen. I have never had silkies. Do I need to put a roost bar inside? I've heard people say they don't roost, they sleep huddled together. I am gonna put 2 nesting boxes attached from the outside so it doesn't take up any floor space and can get eggs from outside. I was thinking about building 3'x4' = 12sq feet. I have 8 silkies will that be big enough? I would rather have extra room so if I get any more. Was basically gonna build a box with venting around the top, a small door for them to go in and out and a large door so i can clean it out.. If anyone has pictures of something I can build cheap please feel free to give your advice. I want to be able to securely lock them up at night. This house will be placed inside a chain link dog run 10'x8'.
    I just lost 8 lavender orps from predators. I am thinking coyotes or wild dogs. So i want to build this coop secure. Will also be securing the chain link dog run. I want to have the coop secure enough that if they get into the run won't get into the coop.
     
  2. 2hot2chicken

    2hot2chicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 15, 2011
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    So your typical standard size it is recommended to have 4 sq feet per bird.
    Bantams like silkies you could be ok with smaller but I would say for happy hens to go no less than 3 sq feet per bird. even if you went as small as 2 sq ft per bird you still could not happily fit 8 silkies in your coop. If you try to confine them in to small a space they will start to have problems over time.
    Examples would be:
    1. picking at each other till the point of injury or death
    2. illness/pests from to close of confinment including resperatory or infections
    3. It will be a pain to clean because you will have to fully clean, stripping all bedding daily or the feces will build up fast and cause large amounts of amonia causing illness quickly.

    Its best to give them as much area as possible but there are many variables. It could depend a lot on if you will keep them always confined to a run or if you will be freeranging them all day. If you be religiously every morning with the sun rise letting them out and just keeping them in for safety at night after dark.
    If it was like me and they have their large run and get to free range all day most days. then you could kinda push it a lil bit. BUT I notice they still pick at each other on days I do not them out even though their run is more than 10 sq ft per bird and their coop is about 3 sq ft per bird.And on the days they get to free range I get more eggs than if they are confined.

    I have also gotten very sick and my DH was at work and forgot to let the girls out and I didn't even get out of bed until 2pm. So the girls were locked in the coop for more than half the day and they were quite ****** at me for it! They destroyed their coop kicking their shavings everywhere! Tipped over their water spilling it on the floor, and spreading their food all over as well which is hard to do out of their feeder. They also only layed me 1 egg that day since they usually lay in the late morning after they got to get out and forage around for a while.

    And to answer your other question.
    Some of my silkies will roost and some of them don't! I am building another coop right now just for my silkies and I will be adding a 2x4 about a foot or 18" off the floor for them to roost if they want to. The problem is silkies cannot fly and do not tend to jump very high either so they usually have trouble getting up onto many roosts.

    Just my 2cents hope this helps you some :)
     
  3. AUSChicken

    AUSChicken New Egg

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    Feb 14, 2012
    I built a coop for my silkies and they definitely roost. They cant fly up , so I built a ramp for them. Every day at 5.30 they walk up the ramp, and step onto a platform which is about 140mm wide. They then step on the roost which is just a piece of 70mm x 50mm rectangular pine. Its about 1m off the ground Originally they roosted on the same size roost that was only 50mm off the ground, but as they got older they moved higher up.
     

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