Chicken coop design

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by jacksonad, Jan 18, 2017.

  1. jacksonad

    jacksonad Just Hatched

    19
    1
    14
    Jan 16, 2017
    Nanaimo,B.C. Canada
    So my orpington chicks are growing rapidly and the construction has begun on the new coop. The design I have made is a 4 x 5 (including nesting boxes) coop and an attached 4 x 8 run (or 4 x 12 including under the raised coop). We are hoping to end up with 4 to 6 hens once ours are old enough to properly sex. Just wondering if this will be big enough for them. They will get some free range time outside of their run as well. Any info/advice is greatly appreciated.
     
  2. jacksonad

    jacksonad Just Hatched

    19
    1
    14
    Jan 16, 2017
    Nanaimo,B.C. Canada
    [​IMG]
     
  3. chickenweirdo1

    chickenweirdo1 Chillin' With My Peeps

    536
    50
    111
    Mar 23, 2016
    Massachusetts
    My Coop
    Seems like enough space. I personally don't like keeping my chickens in their run. Free range if possible, is always the way to go.
     
  4. yyz0yyz0

    yyz0yyz0 Chillin' With My Peeps

    611
    80
    144
    May 2, 2012
    I've seen the following numbers thrown around here on BYC:

    Coop 4sqft/bird
    Run 10sqft/bird

    My coop is 4x8 while my run is about 160sqft. So given those numbers I have coop space for 8 birds but run space for 16. There are other factors that come in to play as well, such as freeranging time, sizes and also if they are locked in the coop at night

    My run is secure so i almost never close the coop, so if the birds are feeling crowded they can just leave the coop for the run.

    I recently reduced my flock from 15 to 13, yes I know I'm way over my coop carrying capacity with those numbers. Dam chicken Math....... I'd be more comfortable with 10 in that coop. That I know of I've only had a problem once from the over crowding. As I said, they can leave the coop anytime, but when we have fresh snow they are always late to leave the coop in the morning. One winter we had a good heavy snow storm come through a few days after I had added some new pullets to the flock. They were very late leaving the coop the next morning in the fresh snow. A day later when I opened the coop to clean the poop boards, I was horrified! It looked like a scene from a horror movie, there was blood splattered everywhere. I looked over the flock and could not seen any signs of who had done the bleeding the day before. I've not had any issues that I know of since that one and thankfully there did not seem to be any long term affects from it.
     
  5. Dmontgomery

    Dmontgomery Chillin' With My Peeps Premium Member

    718
    288
    161
    Apr 1, 2014
    Longville, La
    That looks like a nice design in the picture. Consider if your chickens will have to stay inside the coop for an extended time due to bad weather or other issues. Will they be too crowded? 4x5 then minus the nesting box sounds small. But that's just my opinion. My only Orpington experience was a rooster, and he was big.
     
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    34,551
    7,756
    596
    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    In winter it could get ugly.......unless you enclose most of the run walls for more space.

    See the link in my signature to a good article on Space.
     
  7. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    31,452
    3,536
    538
    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    [​IMG]

    Aim for 3-4 hens and you might be okay.

    You've got cold winters to consider. Roofing and enclosing some walls of the run will increase outdoor space in the winter. But, overall they'll be spending more time in the coop in the winter.

    And, Orpingtons are bigger birds. They need more space than some smaller breeds.

    Your coop is 20 square feet. Not sure how much you're using for nest boxes--say only 2 feet. Now, are you keeping food and water in there also? Subtract another 2 feet. You're down to 16 feet. Each hen, just her body size, on Orpington takes up over a foot. If you have 4 birds, say they take up at least 6 feet, just siting still. So, you're already down to just 10 square feet of "free space" in the coop---that's not very much to keep birds from getting on each other's nerves.

    I'd go bigger if at all possible.
     
    1 person likes this.
  8. jacksonad

    jacksonad Just Hatched

    19
    1
    14
    Jan 16, 2017
    Nanaimo,B.C. Canada
    Well construction has started and already gotten bigger. Went with 5 feet wide instead of 4. So will be 4x5 with 4 nesting boxes attached to the outside making 5x5 total and run 5x12. Will post photos once complete
     
  9. Mahlzeit

    Mahlzeit Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,406
    55
    216
    Jul 16, 2007
    Long Island NY
    Why would he need to enclose the run in winter?
     
  10. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    34,551
    7,756
    596
    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by