Chicken coop upgrade...help needed

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by chad3, Nov 21, 2013.

  1. chad3

    chad3 Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 5, 2013
    Central New York
    I haven't been on for the longest time I've gotten so busy with school it seems like I just haven't had the time to be out with the chickens like I used to. :(

    But any way my cop needs a some serious help first of all
    Bedding: Just concrete now leaning torward sand or wood shavings
    Roosts: Plain old 2x4s now but want something easier to clean
    Nesting boxes: The metal ones I have are rusting and falling apart if you have any plans for wooden boxes that would be helpful
    That's all I can think of at the moment but all recommendations will be helpful. Oh I almost forgot my chickens are full size egg layers not bantams
     
  2. Alaskan

    Alaskan The Frosted Flake

    I find my 2x4s very easy to clean. I use poop trays/shelves under the perches (helps oodles with clean-up). I use Sweet PDZ in the poop shelves and when I clean the PDZ I sprinkle some of it on the perches. the chickens then have to walk in the PDZ to perch and that helps to clean their feet as well as the perch. When I have poop that sticks to the perch, a strong flat piece of metal helps to quickly scrape the perch clean. A spackle knife works well.

    Any old anything can work as nest boxes. Plastic totes, 5 gallon plastic buckets, or wooden boxes all work.
     
  3. Mtn Laurel

    Mtn Laurel Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 18, 2012
    Northern Virginia
    My Coop
    If you're short on time then deep litter bedding would be perfect for you as well as for your chickens. I did sand for a while and found it more time consuming than deep litter and I didn't like it as well so I removed all the sand. What a pain!

    A good thread on deep litter > https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/643302/results-from-first-year-with-deep-litter-method

    I use pine shavings and leaves and the girls love it. I actually have to step up when I walk into the coop as there's about 6 inches of litter on the floor. I have a table with sides under the roost that has litter in it. I add more litter to that tray as poo accumulates and occasionally will toss some of the accumulation onto the coop floor and add more litter to that particular spot. The rest of it I leave alone - throw some sunflower seeds down and the girls will scratch and turn the litter themselves. Add more litter to the coop as the litter composes down.

    The Good News = No smell using deep litter - less work using deep litter - leaves used for litter can be found free - and deep litter is better for the birds according to my vet. It helps them build a resistance to bacteria that could otherwise make them ill, such as cocci.

    Roosts: I use 2 x 4's with the wide side up. Use a decent gloss paint and paint them with several coats and they'll hold up to scrapings and scrubbings and are easier to clean. I just get a can of "screwed up or returned" paint at the store as I don't care about color too much.

    Nesting Boxes: plastic kitty litter boxes work good. We used scrap lumber and nailed together 14x14 in. boxes for our first coop. Each box was about 6-8 in. tall to hold straw. Worked great.
     
  4. Primo

    Primo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 1, 2013
    Texas
    Describe how your coop is utilized. Are they in it all day with no run? Do they have a run and are in and out all day? Or do they free range and are only in the coop at night? For the first two either deep litter or sand (personally I don't like the idea of sifting sand, but that's just me) Third scenario just throw some pine shavings in there and install a poop board.

    As Alaskan mentioned, nesting boxes can be almost anything (12" x 12" plywood box, buckets, crates etc.)

    Can't help you with the roost, mine is 2x4 and have never bothered cleaning it. Just doesn't. get messy enough for me to worry about.
     

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