Chicken Crammin!

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by DENALI, Mar 2, 2008.

  1. DENALI

    DENALI Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 27, 2008
    Ok here is kind of what i am leaning towards. I am wanting to build a coop (size yet to be determined) and put two runs off of it both being about 12 feet wide by about 21 feet long. I want two seperate runs with the ability to section off the coop itself so i can have layers in one side and meat birds in the other. When i dont have meat birds ( i only plan to raise those once a year) both sides of the coop will be opened up and the layers will have access to the whole thing including both runs. Considering the size of the runs can 40 chickens be Crammed into a 10x12 coop? Or is this pushing it? I am located in Kansas so the winters can be pretty cold sometimes. I plan to only have winter hardy breeds. Let me know your thoughts!
     
  2. Katy

    Katy Flock Mistress

    I'd say you need to go larger. That not very much space per bird. You're likely to end up with pecking problems when the weather is nasty and they don't want to go out.
     
  3. bunch-a-chickens

    bunch-a-chickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    thats about three feet per bird. if u've got a run,10x12 should do, but they need to be in the run as much as possible
     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2008
  4. DENALI

    DENALI Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:They would be able to access the runs 24/7 unless there is a reason not to let them? I plan to make them covered runs so nothing in nothing out......
     
  5. Katy

    Katy Flock Mistress

    This winter mine have spent lots of time in the coop...not penned in, but the weather's been so crappy they chose not to go out. I'm in Kansas too.
     
  6. countryboy

    countryboy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 31, 2007
    i think you ought to go 10 x 16' inside and not have to worry about cramming them in , just my side of it.
     
  7. DENALI

    DENALI Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:10x16 might be a pretty good compromise considering i dont plan to start with or maintain a 40 bird flock. 40 birds would be my max at anyone time.
    Hypothetically speaking though, during the summer months when there is no cold weather to drive them in how many birds per foot of coop can you get away with? As in if i end up maintaining a 35-40 bird laying flock and want to divide out the coop and raise 20 additional meat birds for the 6-8 weeks needed during their growth cycle in summer months.
     
  8. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    What about building a second small coop for your meat birds, so that the layers will *always* have the full 10x12 or 10x16 regular coop (I'd strongly lean towards the latter size, esp. because your hens may not always want to go out in the cold winter weather).

    The thing is that meat birds are legendary for the amount of poo and stench and ammonia they produce, and it seems to me that having them in a subdivided portion of an already crowded layer coop is probably just asking for a great deal of misery and trouble.

    Since they would not be there long and it'd only be in summer it could probably be a much simpler mroe primitive shelter type of coop than your year-round layer coop would be. And if you wanted you could have the meat bird coop open into one of the two runs.

    In general, when you are planning space and size issues, bear in mind that the more you try to 'cram in' to a small space, the more management difficulties you are likely to run into -- using more litter, spending more time cleaning, having more trouble with picking and cannibalism, losing more chickens to disease, etcetera. It may be better to spend a little more building a larger coop/run in the first place than be perpetually battling crowding issues year in year out.

    Just a thought,

    Pat
     
  9. Churkenduse

    Churkenduse Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would go larger,

    but don't underestimate the predetors, my dog gets in and I thought it was secure so be careful. I never let mine run around at night. One predetor can thin out your flock in no time.


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  10. countryboy

    countryboy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 31, 2007
    Quote:10x16 might be a pretty good compromise considering i dont plan to start with or maintain a 40 bird flock. 40 birds would be my max at anyone time.
    Hypothetically speaking though, during the summer months when there is no cold weather to drive them in how many birds per foot of coop can you get away with? As in if i end up maintaining a 35-40 bird laying flock and want to divide out the coop and raise 20 additional meat birds for the 6-8 weeks needed during their growth cycle in summer months.

    minimum square foot recommended is 4 square feet per chicken, standard chickens.
    i would recommend a primitive shelter as pat suggested, for the meat birds it could always be broken down and stored till the next batch.
    with a 10' x16' coop inside measurement you would be meeting the minimum size for 40 standard layer hens.
     

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