1. Irishhenman

    Irishhenman Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 2, 2013
    Hello, I want to build a new coop for my layers. I am from Ireland so we don't get any extreme weather conditions, it rarely goes below 30 degrees F and snow never stays on the ground for more than a few hours and it only snows for a day or two every year. heat is not a problem during summer! Basically the rule for space here is 1.5 square feet per bird in a house. I want some tips and advice on what to put in it. I have built coops before and I will be using timber to build it. It will hold roughly 20 birds and they will have outside access all day and locked up at night because of foxes. Should I make it so that I can walk in or is it worth the extra effort. Roughly how many nest boxes would I need (all my other pens are only for pairs or small flocks and only have one nest box so I am not sure how many are needed). Any other worthwhile additions, I have heard of poop boards but I am not completely sure what they are though.
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2013
  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe True BYC Addict

    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    Actually the rule of thumb is 4 sq. ft. per bird if they will spend any waking hours in the coop.

    Chickens don't have a problem with cold if acclimated. Go for big ventilation and predator proof.

    You'll need roosts about 2" wide and higher than the nests that are at least 1 cubic foot.

    I like coniferous shavings for bedding on the coop floor.

    Food in the coop IMO prevents intrusion of wild birds.

    Water outside eliminates humidity in the coop.

    Configure the chicken door, roost and nest boxes so that the chickens don't walk through feces to go to the nest.

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