1. asears78

    asears78 New Egg

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    Jan 21, 2014
    I am brand new to the backyard chicken club. I've done quite a bit of research and will be buying my chicks soon. But I need a coop! I'd prefer to build my own as opposed to buying a kit but I'm having a hard time deciding on a design. Any recommendations would be great. I plan to purchase 5 chicks (one for each of my kids). Thanks! I forgot to mention, I live in a newly constructed residential neighborhood so I would like a coop that is pleasing to the eye. Thankfully no HOA to worry about though.
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2014
  2. SD Bird Lady

    SD Bird Lady Chillin' With My Peeps

    What is the climate like where you are located?

    *** just some unsolicited advice: I got 3 chicks for my kids and one grew into a rooster so he got to stay and I got rid of my boy haha Just be prepared for heartache is one doesn't make it or if you accidentally get a boy that you can't keep.
     
  3. kimmommy23

    kimmommy23 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 8, 2014
    New Hampshire
    [​IMG]

    This is our coop. Small run as they are more free-range. 4x8 allowed full pieces of plywood over the studs. Wish it was wider rather than tall though, but live and learn, next time, and there will be a next time. Landscaping for the girls this summer[​IMG]
    A lot depends on whether they will be free ranged or "cooped" up. I will give you a few tips that I learned after making our coop,
    1) Make the coop a little bigger than you need, because you think you want 5 hens, but then some one offers you a little beauty, and you find a silkie for free, and then you want to get some dark eggs and start thinking about Marans, and pretty soon you wish you had room for 15 hens instead of 5. Yes, more is better!
    2) Strategically place the roosts, nesting boxes, food/waterer, and access to run. You want to be able to get eggs without going near the roosts, because those are poop spots, do not place window(s) near the nesting boxes, they prefer a darker area. Food and waterers need to be a little away from roosts as well so no poop gets in them.
    3) They don't need too much height in the coop, but you want to get in there to clean without banging your head, so probably at least as high as you are tall.
    4) Keep it simple. As cute as a tiny house is, it isn't necessary, 4 walls, a floor, a door and some ventilation. That is really the most important. The section on coop designs is awesome. I suggest browsing and jotting notes on what you see and like, don't like, and what you have room for. Good luck!
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2014
  4. kimmommy23

    kimmommy23 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 8, 2014
    New Hampshire
    BTW our coop comfortably houses 8 hens, and until very recently, 1 rooster.
     
  5. asears78

    asears78 New Egg

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    Jan 21, 2014

    I live in central Texas so it's HOT in the summer and very mild in the winter (if you could even call it winter). Very little rain.

    I have a friend who also got a "rooster surprise"! I'll prep the kids for the potential unforeseen dilemmas of the chick life. Thanks for the advice!
     
  6. asears78

    asears78 New Egg

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    Jan 21, 2014
    Very cute! My plan is for them to be mostly free range. I would like to let them roam during the day and then close them in at sundown. We have owls and coyotes on the prowl [​IMG].
     
  7. SD Bird Lady

    SD Bird Lady Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sorry I'm from "up north" in South Dakota hehe I have seen many southern coops that are 3 sided but have no experience with this. Good Luck!!
     
  8. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    32,817
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    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop

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