Coop Questions & Pics

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Fix14wd, Sep 15, 2014.

  1. Fix14wd

    Fix14wd In the Brooder

    Aug 7, 2014
    Woodland Park, CO
    My daughter and I recently finished building this coop, 3x7. We used pallet boards on the outside to give it a barn wood look. We like the way it came out...

    I have a couple pallet boards as roosts on the left side of the coop but I haven't seen the hens use them. Do I need to build a ladder or ramp so the can get up there to perch? They've looked at them like they want to get up there, but haven't done it to my knowledge.

    We have 5 hens andI have 3 nesting boxes built in. I didn't think we'd need one box per chicken, but when they go in at night a couple try to double up in the boxes. Should I add 2 more?

    Also, I have straw down on the floor of the coop. Looks like it's gonna be a pain to clean up. I've seen the posts saying to stay away from kitty litter in a brooder, but would it be ok in a coop with adult birds?


    I've already modified the ladder with a plywood bottom and more rungs. Newb.
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2014
    2 people like this.
  2. HighStreetCoop

    HighStreetCoop Songster

    Aug 28, 2014
    Oakland, CA
    My Coop
    The coop is adorable! I'm sure the chickens will figure out the roosts. They don't look too tall to me at all.
  3. thomasboyle

    thomasboyle Songster

    Feb 28, 2013
    Northwest Hills of CT
    Coop looks great! Good use of pallet wood.

    Chickens will hop or fly up on the perches, no ramp or ladder necessary. My roosts are 30" off the ground, and they have no issue going up and down without a ramp.

    You should be fine with 3 nesting boxes. Even if you had 6, they would all try and use the same one. I have 5 boxes, and most often I get all my eggs in 2 of them, and I have 18 hens.

    I've never used cat litter with the birds, I would be afraid they would try and eat it. I use hay, and it works well, especially if you keep the food and water outside. I add another thin layer of hay each week, and clean it all out in the spring. They turn the hay into a nice black soil that is perfect for the gardens.

    Well done, and enjoy the results of your labor!
  4. Fix14wd

    Fix14wd In the Brooder

    Aug 7, 2014
    Woodland Park, CO
    That's funny, 18 hens using 2 boxes... Guess I have nothing to worry about then! Thanks so much for the tips!
  5. ECBW

    ECBW Songster

    Apr 12, 2011
    My coop is similar size (3x6). Is that a roost about 12" AFF next to you daughter? I would think that could be higher. my 3 nests are 18" high, lowest roost is 24" high and high roosts at 32" and no ladder. You knwo to keep the nests lower than roost in order to keep them from sleeping and pooping in the nests.

    I use wood shaving in the coop, and would suggest a higher (4" or higher) threshold to keep flooring material in. Clean out once in a blue moon and compost everything. As long as the interior is dry, it does not smell.

    I keep my feeder and waterer in the coop too.
  6. Fix14wd

    Fix14wd In the Brooder

    Aug 7, 2014
    Woodland Park, CO
    Yeah, that's a roost. There's another one behind it and higher up. They haven't used them yet, I think they're just sleeping on the floor and in two of the nesting boxes. I guess I'll consider adding another board across the front and keep adding straw. I'll have to raise the nest boxes and roosts if I do that. Re-engineering! I put feed and water in there every night, should I not do that?
  7. Wxguru

    Wxguru Chirping

    Sep 2, 2014
    Love the coop! In the middle of building a pallet coop myself here in Arkansas. About the roosts....are they smooth or are they still rough? Wonder if they don't like wood rough due to splinters possibly? Noticed you are in Woodland Park, CO....I absolutely love that city. We own land in Hartsel and I always try to stop in Woodland Park. :)
  8. JanetS

    JanetS Songster

    Jun 22, 2012
    Love your coop! 3 boxes is plenty but I would discourage your chickens from sleeping in them. They poop a lot at night and you don't want that
    in the same area as the eggs. If they aren't laying yet you could close them off for now.

    We use sand in our coop. Easy clean up.
  9. Fix14wd

    Fix14wd In the Brooder

    Aug 7, 2014
    Woodland Park, CO
    Thanks for the replies!

    Wxguru - I found nice quality pallet boards for the roosts, smooth sides up. I thought along the same lines as you are. Looking forward to seeing your finished coop!
    I love being in WP, we're actually between WP and Divide. Have all kinds of wildlife on the property. I go fishing near Hartsel, love the area! You're lucky to have land!

    JanetS - We have had 1 egg so far, but only had them about 3 days. I can't say for certain they aren't laying, might just be getting used to things. I'll give it a little more time before closing any nest boxes off.

    Thanks again!
  10. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Field Design!

    Yeah, you really want to keep them from sleeping in the nests-very bad habit, take them out of nests after dark and place them on the roost...few nights to a week of that and they will figure it out.

    You might need more ventilation in that coop.

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