Chicken tractor - Can I put the coop on top of the run?


6 Years
May 8, 2013
So I was aiming for a 4x8FT chicken tractor but I realized that the amount of room for the run and the coop itself isn't enough. So to match it, I was thinking of a 4x4ft coop on top of a 4x10ft run. Will that work? I'm worried that the fact nearly half the run is covered by the coop that it may negatively effect the chickens.

To put it clear of what I was thinking about doing is building a frame for the run and in the very back 4ft of the run (since the coop is 4ft long) put on extra supports and beams across it where I can put a piece of plywood (or something like that) on top of as the base, where I can put thinks such as walls on, creating the coop. The stairs would be underneath the coop. Anyway, is this a bad design?

Also, as far as chicken tractors go, how do I make it level? If I have the wheels on the back of it and I set it down the very back will be slightly higher then the front. How would I fix that?
Yes you can do it like that. They sell pre-made tractors with that design. Don't know how to level it, I've never used wheels on one. Hopefully someone else can chime in on that one.
Thanks for the reply!

I also forgot to ask, which is better for the frame, Cedar or pressure treated? Where I live a good 10ft Cedar 2x4 costs around $10, while pressure treated is about the same price as typically non-treated Hem-Fir, which is about $5 for a 10ft 2x4.

I also don't know what kind of wood is used for pressure treated.
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Pressure treated is usually pine for the cheaper amounts. Cedar is toxic to chickens. Forgot to add, with your coop covering part of your run it gives them much needed shade and shelter from the rain if they insist on being outside in bad or hot weather.
Cedar- naturally rot resistant, high priced, used for custom, natural finish ornamental work
Pressure treated-yellow pine or southern pine, chemically treated for rot resistance, low cost, used for work that's exposed to wet conditions or in contact with the ground.
Most house structural framing is done with even lower cost non-treated yellow & southern pine. You can use non-treated pine outside if you prime & paint it but you negate the savings by having to buy paint. It would be fine unpainted inside your coop, such as rafters, wall studs, door & window framing, bracing etc.
In my neck of the woods HD sells 8 ft pressure treated pine studs @ $3.57 ea and non treated pine studs @ $2.57 ea.

Only thing about the coop being on top of the run is that you will have to get inside the coop periodically, so keep easy acess in mind when you build it.

To level a tractor or anything else, put a level on it and raise the low end of the tractor by placing small blocks, shims, whatever, etc underneath it until the level bubble is between the 2 lines.
Hope this helps.
I did a little more research and Cedar probably isn't a good choice. It's not that it's bad for chickens, it's just that it's too expensive and too weak for a frame and it isn't too rot-resistant anymore because most Cedar now comes from trees that aren't too old (from 2nd generation forests) and haven't developed the wood that much to the point of it being extremely rot-resistant. Without being treated it will last about 2-3 times longer them typically wood such as Fir, which isn't enough for me. If I have to treat it to even make it last, it's not worth it.

I'm thinking about pressure treated although I'd want to paint it, which may ruin the purpose of it. So I really don't know.

Still thinking
You can certianly paint pressure treated. It will not ruin but will instead augment it's intended purpose, which is making the structure withstand the elements better & longer.
You can certianly paint pressure treated. It will not ruin but will instead augment it's intended purpose, which is making the structure withstand the elements better & longer.

True, but make sure you let it dry out real good before painting. It's usually pretty wet when first purchased...might even wait a year to paint.
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