1. gootziecat

    gootziecat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 27, 2007
    Hampshire Co, WV
    I'm getting ready to build an 8 x 12 coop. I see a lot of reference here to build it up off the ground, say 18 - 24". Discussing this with a friend, it was mentioned if I have groundhogs, building the coop up will invite them to dug under it. I have groundhogs big time. But there are also big snakes here...eeeek. Higher up is going to be a problem for me to clean and bring in supplies. The building foundation will be on 4x4's. I'm at a quandry which way to go, up or ground level. Maybe some one will have suggestions.

    Thanks.
     
  2. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    Quote:IME groundhogs usually pick *lower* sheds to make their home under -- things that are raised only 6-12". That is largely the REASON for suggesting a coop be raised at least 18" if it is raised; the higher more-open space under there makes pests feel less at home there.

    Even if the coop is built directly on the ground with a dirt floor, you will still need to do something in the way of digproofing. Not just vs groundhogs but vs other things too.

    Snakes are not generally a problem for grown chickens, although occasionally they take eggs or baby chicks.

    Good luck, have fun,

    Pat
     
  3. Schroeder

    Schroeder Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 9, 2008
    Central Indiana
    My Coop
    Mine is 18 inches off the ground. I covered the underneath side of the floor with hardware cloth, then I covered the sides of the opening with hardware cloth and included a 2 ft horizontal apron about 2 inches undeground. If a predator somehow managed to burrow under the coop, it would have to stand upright to try to break through the hardware cloth on the under side of the floor joists. I think/hope it is impossible.

    I think there is a bigger risk of a predator burrowing in under a floor that is at ground level.
     
  4. joletabey

    joletabey SDWD!!!!

    Apr 9, 2009
    western NC
    If it is 8 x 12, make it tall enough for you to stand in, and put a step or two at the human door. You didn't mention a run- if you put your chicken house in the run and apron the run with the hardware cloth, then you can leave the space under the run for your chickens to use as shade. Mine have dug their dust bath holes under mine and use it to stay cool on these hot days.
     
  5. gootziecat

    gootziecat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 27, 2007
    Hampshire Co, WV
    Thanks for the input. Sounds like off the ground will be the way to go. BTW, I'll be more worried about the snakes than the chickens.
     
  6. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    Mine is built on the ground basically, and the only issues I've had w/digging under it is moles. But I guess that depends on your situation. Between my dogs and cats, not much enters our yard that isn't picked off fairly quickly...EXCEPT the danged moles!!!
     

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