Coop over the run. What size of door? What angle for ladder?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by SouthernAlberta, Apr 19, 2012.

  1. SouthernAlberta

    SouthernAlberta Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If I build my coop over top of a section of run, what size of door opening should I have for full-sized birds (ie Orpingtons) to climb between the levels? Also, do chickens prefer a certain angle/length for the ladder between levels? Thanks in advance.
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2012
  2. SouthernAlberta

    SouthernAlberta Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Would a 12"x12" door be appropriate?
     
  3. chestypuller

    chestypuller Chillin' With My Peeps

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    do they really need a ladder? if theres a hole above them i would think they could just fly up.
     
  4. jeepguy982001

    jeepguy982001 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I guess it depends how high your run is. I made mine short 3ft. to save on wire cost. Some peoples are over 6 ft. I have a raised section of wire above my door my chicken door is probably 3 ft off the ground (my coop is raised) and they really don't use it at all maybe just the first few inches near the door otherwise the fly up or jump out.
     
  5. SouthernAlberta

    SouthernAlberta Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Good point. The run will likely only be a three feet high below the coop, so I might not need a ladder.
     
  6. jeepguy982001

    jeepguy982001 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I've never dealt with orpingtons so if you don't want to do a ladder i'd at least make some sort of perch to land on instead. The only issue i see is if you ever have young chickens they may prefer the ramp.
     
  7. 3riverschick

    3riverschick Poultry Lit Chaser

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    My Coop
    Don't make your Orphingtons fly up or down from the coop. They are heavy fowl and shouldn't be asked to jump more than 12 to 14 inches in height because of their weight and possile injury to shanks , ankles and feet.
    Make a board ramp about 8 inches wide. Cut it long enough so the birds have about a 40 percent incline. An angle shallow enough so they don't have to struggle to get up the ramp. Watch them and adjust accordingly.
    Cut 1 inch by one inch pieces of lumber to 8 inch lengths. Position them 2 inches apart for the length of the board. If your coop is quite high off the ground, make a 90 degree turn on the ramp and postion a nice 14 to 18 inch diameter landing at the turn which is no more than 12 inches off the ground as the birds may be tempted to jump off the landing and not use the rest of the lower ramp..
    Position their roost 12 inches off the floor and no more than 14 inches high. Use a 2x4. In the warm weather, turn it so the birds roost on the 2 inch side. On cold weather, rotate it so the birds roost on the 4 inch side. This allows them to roost on their feet and keep them warm.
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    l l
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    I screw a wooden roost holder like the one above to each side of my small coop. Then I can position the 2x4 roost just laying it vertical in the 2 inch slot for warm use or horizontal across the 4 inch part for cold use. If the 2x4 gets soiled, I can just replace it without having to make a whole new roost.
    Best,
    Karen in PA, USA
     
    Last edited: May 1, 2012
    1 person likes this.
  8. SouthernAlberta

    SouthernAlberta Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks Karen!
     
  9. 3riverschick

    3riverschick Poultry Lit Chaser

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    My Coop
     
  10. SouthernAlberta

    SouthernAlberta Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hubby modified our hutch into a coop while I was at work yesterday. I emailed him all of my notes, but he's stubborn, an engineering technologist and a former country kid, so I'm certain he proceeded without reading any of my big city kid research. [​IMG] Regardless, he made the hole and ladder just about perfectly, according to your ideas, Karen.

    We picked up three pullets last night, including a 12-week-old Orpington that my daughter has named "Momma" (even though the bird will likely never be bred). Momma went down the ladder to the open run under the coop immediately. She stayed down there hissing at my dogs until I covered the coop and then she climbed back up.

    There is a roosting bar, about three feet long and 2.5 inches wide, but Momma preferred to roost on the edge of the nest. No biggie, no one is laying age quite yet and the nests are more covered and warm than the true roost. I will, however, add a sloped cover to the nest so no one can poop into it.
     

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