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Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by rochesjourney, Feb 24, 2017.
I'm getting ready to start building my coops. What type of floor is best? Dirt, wood, concrete?
Any of the three listed can work - each with pros and cons - it's going to depend on the type of coop you are constructing. What size coop are you planning to build? What style of coop are you planning to build?
Each of the coops I have had have had wood flooring that I then used deep litter on.
We have a wooden floor with vinyl covering it but the vinyl started to peel and the chickens ripped sections of it up, once warmer weather comes we are planning to re-glue it to the floor, other than that it works extremely well!!
Our coop floor is OSB painted with DeckOver, it's a thick paint that has a slight sand texture. It was a shed that we repurposed, the floor was already in place so we had to find something to protect that OSB, It had held up very well.
The coop stays very dry, water in the run, deep bedding, lots of ventilation and a poop board.
People are always asking what is the ”best” to use or the “best” way to do things. It’s understandable, everyone wants what’s best for their chickens. But we are all so unique with different goals, climates, flock make-ups, flock sizes, management techniques, and just so many things that there cannot be a “best” for all of us. Someone keeping a flock of four hens in a small urban backyard in Miami will likely have different needs than someone free-ranging a large flock of multiple hens, roosters, and chicks outside Fargo, North Dakota. And to make it even more confusing there are several different ways that can work for each of those situations.
The more you can tell us about your goals, expected flock make-up and size, your coop and run size, things like that, the more we can help. We can tell you what we do, but unless that matches your situation it’s really not any help.
I see you are in Texas. Just knowing that helps as far as climate goes, thanks for including that helpful information. It sounds like your coop will be on the ground, will it be big enough to walk into? Do you have an existing building you’ll be using or are you getting something? Do you plan to use the poop and/or bedding in your compost pile? Is the coop going to be located where water drains away from it or will rainwater run to it and stand? Location in respect to water and it getting wet is very important.
I notice you said coops plural, not coop singular. Could you please expand on that a bit? Does that mean you intend on a commercial operation?
Hoping to hear from you so we can offer help.
The layers' house is concrete. All other houses are up on legs with plywood floors. All floors are painted with Stormcoat. Quite a bit thicker then paint and so far has not pealed in any of the coops. I use shavings for their litter and clean out with needed.
Dirt-floored sheds and garages are always sopping wet messes of mold and humidity, as water vapor evaporates up out of the ground, and has nowhere to go. So, if doing a dirt-floored coop, I'd say some extra ventilation is in order. My floor is plywood, and painted with an industrial wood floor coating product I had left over from painting the second floor of my work shop.
Strange, my dirt floor coop is always dry. Dad’s dirt floor coop was always dry. That’s why I asked about location and water drainage. If water drains away from it not to it, you keep rain and snow out, and your waterer does not leak, dirt floors can be very dry. If they are put in a low spot where water drains to them and stands, they will often be wet.
Question; in my experience wood doesn't last too long when buried in decomposing soil. How do you keep your wood floors from rotting out under all that what is essentially compost.?
Thanks for all the responses. I will try and fill in the blanks. I am building coops probably 8x8 or 8x10, to hold 6-10 birds (too big or too small?). They will be 7-8 feet tall, with a door, vents, and 2 windows for cross ventilation. I plan on using T 111 for the walls and metal for the roof. My runs will be completely enclosed with wire as I have a couple of owls that think they own the place. I am near Abilene, Texas so the runs should be able to be used on nearly a daily basis, minus the few frigid days a year that happen here. I have just over an acre that is completely level, but I am in a flood plain. I am just getting back into this after a 7 year hiatus. With my previous flocks, I had coops with dirt floors. There were good and bad points. My coops were made from spare materials from other projects so they weren't top of the line. The dirt seemed to stay dry, but I had issues with snakes tunneling through and had a skunk get in once. I am thinking a wood floor will raise them off the ground enough to deter unwanted critters and keep them dry if we get a heavy rain. If there is a risk of major flooding, I can sand bag the coops or evacuate the birds. However, one of the major cons I see is the wood rotting, even if I use pressure treated lumber.
With only an acre, I definitely will not be a commercial operation, but I do plan to sell some chicks and eggs throughout the year to offset my expenses. I am also homesteading so I will have meaties for consumption and I may have a breeding pen or two to try some designer breeding. I'm just a hobbyist and addict I guess I should say.