Coop Closet -- Advice before it's too late!

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by rhetoric, May 22, 2008.

  1. rhetoric

    rhetoric Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 28, 2008
    Western New York
    I want an "entry way" into my 8X12 hen house. The main door is in the middle of the end (8ft) and I intend to wall/wire off a little square about 4X6 -- restricted access, no chickens allowed. I'm doing this for a number of reasons. Keep the feed and chicken supplies from getting poopy, etc. I plan to put a wire door to gain access to the chickens, but I'm thinking of building my nesters (about 6) so the backs of the nestors are accessible (egg collection) from entry way. This will keep us out of the coop itself for egg collection and keep us out of the weather when it's 13 below and blizzardy (happens alot, here). I also want to rig a rope pull so I can open the chicken door w/o going in.

    I like the chickens -- really -- I just want the option.

    So here's the question -- apart from the general advice about what you put in closets/entries, my design will leave a little corner section of the coop about 2x4. Is that too small a section to place my nesters? That is, by the time I put up the nestors, the birds would have about a 1 foot "isle" to get access to the nestors. Is this going to cramp their style? I know they like darker for laying and this would be the darkest corner, but I want to know if this will be enough room for them to "get in."

    Hope this is clear.
     
  2. RoostersCrow

    RoostersCrow Chillin' With My Peeps

    They would need to be kept pretty low to the floor for them to get in and out with only a foot of space to do it in. However, it could be done so they access them from the end and have the "isle" on the nest box level. (Imagine the isle as the terrace on a motel 6 type courtyard and I think you may be able to envision what I mean)
     
    Last edited: May 23, 2008
  3. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    I would be leery of creating a little 2x4 cul-de-sac where one bird could potentially corner and clean the clock of another if they get an argument going. It is certainly not a good idea for horse, cat, dog housing and while I haven't had a chicken pen with that particular design I certainly see the chickens doing enough things from time to time that'd make me want to avoid it for them either ;P

    Is there any way of redrawing the walls of your entryway to minimize that problem? For instance could you swap which directions the 4 and 6' walls go, so that you are only using 4' (not 6') of the short end wall?

    Or, would you consider doing a 3x8 entryway instead, i.e. full width of the short side. Or something like that?

    Good luck,

    Pat
     
  4. rhetoric

    rhetoric Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 28, 2008
    Western New York
    Hmmmmmm. I'll see about the 36 inch full length option. I guess the math works out the same for square footage.

    Back to work.

    Let me tell you something, these chickens better lay!
     
  5. arlee453

    arlee453 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 13, 2007
    near Charlotte NC
    I was going to suggest the same thing - just wall off 3' going all the way across. that would leave you 3x8 and the chickens 8x8.

    You could even save time and $$ by framing out the wall with 1x3 furring strips and gussets and covering with chicken wire, and bulding a door way in the middle - or build your nest boxes on 2x4 framing and I like the idea of having the egg collection holes in the 'vestibule' area so you can collect without getting into the chicken area.

    I am seeing the nest boxes over to the right, then a door in the middle and the left hand side with metal garbage cans for feed storage below, and a shelf for other supplies on top....
     
  6. Chirpy

    Chirpy Balderdash

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    May 24, 2007
    Colorado
    Here's a picture of the same type of thing that we did on our coop.

    You walk inside on the "people" side. There is a chicken wire door immediately to the right (not built yet in picture) that gives me access into the "chicken" side. I can collect my eggs and not have to stand in the elements (wind, rain, sleet, snow, hail -- whatever) and don't have to worry about my kids forgetting to close up the nest box doors as the chickens would still be safely contained inside the hen house if they did get through the nest box door.

    I also don't have to stand in chicken poo when inside the hen house.... however, my hens do love to be with me when I go inside so, being the softy that I am, I let them in and they have poo'd on the people side floor occasionally.

    [​IMG]

    I would love to have had more room for storage on the people side. I keep a five gallon pail with their food and one bag of wood shavings, their oyster shell bag and that's about all I have room for.
     
  7. rhetoric

    rhetoric Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 28, 2008
    Western New York
    Well, it's done, but in case I screwed it up I screwed it up so I can unscrew it and change it.

    [​IMG]

    36 inches was good, but the wall wouldn't have been over a floor joist -- I didn't like that. And in any case, the door needed to be able to open (in). So (and I'll post pics when the whole ding dang coop is done) I decided to go with my "isle for the chickens" plan on the left, but put roosters in that section instead of nestors, and put the nestors on the right, just like the ones posted in Chirpy's picture. In fact, Chirpy's picture inspired me (hope this isn't patent infringement). If the roost corner turns out to be a dud or a problem, I'll change it. I'm assuming the chickens don't like to hang out underneath the roosters, in which case the corner entrapment won't be such a problem. I just hate the thought of that space wasted. The nestors will be recessed into the vestibule (I like that word) so they won't be eating into coop space as much.

    I confess I wasn't thinking about wood chips and oyster shell, but I do have a little "loft" in which I could store a few bags of supplies, too.

    The idea of a vestibule sanctum is partially inspired by the efforts to keep the fam/kids enjoying collecting eggs and such. If I can keep them out of the poopiness, I figure I'm better off. And, again, keeping egg collection out of the weather.

    This was going to be a fun little coop built w/ scraps and such, but it's gotten to the point where if I even just drive by Home Depot they automatically deduct $100.00 from my checking account. But I'm sure having alot of fun.

    Thanks for all the great advice.
     
  8. Chirpy

    Chirpy Balderdash

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    May 24, 2007
    Colorado
    rhetoric wrote:

    "This was going to be a fun little coop built w/ scraps and such, but it's gotten to the point where if I even just drive by Home Depot they automatically deduct $100.00 from my checking account. But I'm sure having alot of fun."

    I almost fell off my chair laughing ... that's exactly how we feel!! I'm quite sure we're paying the entire salary of several people who work at Home Depot. [​IMG]

    No patent infringement violated at all. I'm happy that you got some ideas from my picture. That's why I posted it.

    Now .... we need to see pictures of yours... hint, hint, hint!
     
  9. AtRendeAcres

    AtRendeAcres Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 23, 2007
    Clarion County
    I would make more room for people side!

    Sorry I don't have picture (lost camera cord)

    Like chirpy nest boxes I have wooden shelves (with doors on People side), each shelf is a large nest box (many can fit)

    I have the 3 bottom shelves done that way: top shelves are walled on chicken side & I use as shelves on people side for brooders lights, waterers, feeders, etc...

    I have a 4x6 area & want to redesign this summer!

    I have a few tubs (Grit, DE, PDZ, rabbit food) stacked ((very hard to access with out taking each down))<wood chips & 3 garbage cans full of food (layer, starter,scratch)

    This is very tight!!!
     

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