Building coop for bantams - Question about roost/poop shelf placement

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by slhopper, Feb 16, 2013.

  1. slhopper

    slhopper Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 15, 2013
    First, I LOVE THIS FORUM!!! Thank you all so much for sharing here!

    I am just getting back into chickens, have not had them in 8 or 9 years since I had to leave my farm. I now have a couple acres and am getting a couple goats and have an order for 10 silkies, 5 seabrights and 5 mille fleur d'uccle chicks due April 1.

    So, I am now constructing my coop. I have settled on a raised 4x8 box style, will enclose the bottom with hardware cloth and attach a run. My question is about the coop section. I love the idea of a poop shelf and using Sweet PDE and scooping it, but would you suggest installing 1 shelf/roost running across the entire 8 feet or 2 4 foot shelves, one at each end? Would the birds prefer having different areas to roost or would they all try to cram into the same one?

    I know silkies are not big on roosting, but the ones I used to have did roost, and I am hoping these will also. The placement of my poop shelves will determine the placement of my doors, either two large doors on the 8 foot side or have each 4 foot end open. Also if I put them on either end, then I could have the nesting boxes under one shelf and the silkies could pile up under the other if they choose not to roost.

    Thanks!!!!! I feel like a kid again :)

    Stephanie in Hillsboro, MO
     
  2. ScottM

    ScottM Chillin' With My Peeps

    The rule of thumb is 4 sqft per bird inside and 10 sqft outside in the run, plus one foot per bird for roosting. Though silkies are smaller. If you're getting 20 birds I'd still revisit your plans IMHO. In Montana they'll be cooped up for long periods as well due to snow.

    Good to think about doors,but also consider ventilation and cleaning.

    If you have two roost areas, they'll likely crowd around whichever side they think is better;)

    I'm also reliving from when I had chickens as a kid, and it is great! Best of luck!

    Scott
     
  3. slhopper

    slhopper Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 15, 2013
    The birds will free range most of the time in a large (over half an acre securely fenced) pen along with the goats. I have vents that I will be installing along with the doors for access and a chicken door. I am hoping my husband will fall in love with them so much that more coops will be built :)

    Also, I am buying straight run, but only intend to keep one rooster max per breed, so my total order is 20 but I expect to end up with more like a dozen or so. Thanks for the input! I was afraid of them all cramming into one end and that not being near enough roost space, think I may just go with the 8 foot one roost.

    Thanks,
    Stephanie
     
  4. slhopper

    slhopper Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 15, 2013
    Oh, and I am in Missouri! US has odd state abbreviations, MO is Missouri. Our weather is nothing like Montana, I would freeze to death myself there. [​IMG]
     

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