Coop question

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Maeve42, Sep 27, 2012.

  1. Maeve42

    Maeve42 New Egg

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    My father has a coop with no windows, and the chickens run the property. Well, to be honest, they rarely ever go farther than 100 feet from the house. But still. Anyway, we've lost several to predators recently, mainly chicks, and frankly, I'm sick to death of having babies go missing. I want to "retro-fit" the windowless coop both with windows and with an enclosed run. Anyone have any idea how I can accomplish this? Please help, I don't want to lose any more babies!
     
  2. PartyOnARoost

    PartyOnARoost Chillin' With My Peeps

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    A brooder would help. Put chicks in brooder and store them in garage or shed and when the are mature enough advance them to a bigger coop with bigger chickens. correct me if I am missing something here...
     
  3. Gittx

    Gittx Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I build a coop recently and added the plastic roofing product offered at Home depot as "windows" I made it so I can slide it out during the heat of summer, and yes, I have wire mesh behind it for extra security.
    [​IMG]
    What you see behind the plastic roofing are the pallets. I have added wire mesh around the bottom with a ramp for them to access the dirt and sand. My next project is to add the run, with wire on top, for additional outdoor space.
     
  4. juststruttin

    juststruttin Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Great idea
     
  5. Maeve42

    Maeve42 New Egg

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    Jul 23, 2012
    Thank you for your replies, but that isn't exactly what I meant. I'm trying to add things to an already-made coop, I'm not building a new one. I'm just sick of loosing chicks that are hatched by their mamas. We have a brooder and an incubator, but when a hen gets broody, we leave her be and let her hatch whichever eggs are going to hatch. But my father does insist on bringing eggs in to put in the incubator, and it's THOSE chicks that worry me the most. The one we have in the house currently was put out yesterday morning, but when I found it yesterday afternoon, it was lethargic, and practically tried to drown itself in the watered when I took it to the thing. I ended up bringing the chick back in and putting it back in the brooder. S/he seemed very happy to be back inside, and has been fine ever since, so now I'm really... I'm really wishing I had been able to get the run built weeks ago, to be honest! I wouldn't have been so apprehensive about putting Peeper out if we had an enclosed run to put it in!
     
  6. Gittx

    Gittx Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I agree with Partonaroost, The chicks need to be inside unless they have a Mom willing to protect them outside. Mine don't go outside until they're at least 6 weeks old. They have temp requirements (95 degrees the first week of life, then 90 degrees the week after, then 85, 80, 75....etc.) and they need to easily find their food and water without having to fight all the bigger, meaner chicks. For heat, I use a 100 watt light bulb, and place it low at first, moving it slightly higher each week. Other than that, I'm not sure what you're asking...... I don't free range, so with the chicks in a wire enclosed run, they stay very safe.
     
  7. Maeve42

    Maeve42 New Egg

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    I think y'all are missing the point to my question. We haven't been letting the chicks hatch outside when we can help it, because we keep losing chicks, so we'll hatch them inside, let them get all their feathers, and put them out. The issue I'm asking about is, is it difficult to retro-fit an existing coop with windows for ventilation and an enclosed run, to make predator activity less of a worry? We actually WANT the mama's to hatch their own eggs and take care of their babies, but in order to let that happen, we need to have an enclosed run. Completely enclosed, like the top and everything. THAT is the problem I'm having, trying to retrofit ventilation and a run to the existing coop. We don't have the materials available to build a new coop. Shoot, we need a new pigpen and can't even afford to build THAT yet!
     
  8. barnaclebob

    barnaclebob Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It all depends on your coop... Most likely if you have a jig saw or sawzall you can add some kind of window easily. As for the run those too are easy to build. How big of a run were you thinking. Do you know what type of predators you are dealing with?

    The short answer is to make some kind of wood frame the size of your run and then cover it with hardware cloth (expensive) or chicken wire (cheaper but less secure). It just needs to butt up against the pop door to the coop.
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2012
  9. Maeve42

    Maeve42 New Egg

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    Thank you! Currently, from what I have seen and been told, we're dealing with hawks, foxes, snakes, and coyotes. I have a Dremel, as well as an assortment of other tools all over this place (my father has never been one for organization, things get put over *here* and over *there*, in that shed, or under that broken tractor component as he sees fit. lol) but I know that at least one of my neighbours will help me try to fix the coop to be better for everyone. Thanks for your reply! :)
     

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