.coop requirments / use

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Gazinga, Jul 9, 2008.

  1. Gazinga

    Gazinga Chook Norris

    Hello all, by this post and question you will be able to tell that im new to chickens. But i just got Orphingtons two weeks ago and have fallen in love with them and want to care for them and am very interested in their proper care. So if anyone could be so kind as to answer a few of these questions for me i would be very grateful.

    i have 10 Orphington hens in a coop / run i have constructed. the coop is 5x10 x 5 h, the run is 15'x8' and enclosed in wire as instructed in this forum.

    questions;
    do i have to close the door to their coop every night, even if the run is 100% enclosed, which their coop in inside of? im asking about the small 1 1/2 door to the coop, not the door to the run.

    there are ALOT of ants in the area of the coop, is this good or bad, i figure it to be good, more food, right?

    the coop has vent holes in it for air movement with wire over the holes. Do i need to ever close these holes, like in winter or anything?

    Thanks to all for your patience, any help would be appreciated. I read this forum and find everone on here to be quite helpful and nice, and also funny at times!

    Thanks
    [​IMG]
     
  2. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Hi, welcome to BYC! [​IMG]

    Quote:Personally I do. You'd have to be 100% convinced that no predator can breach the run (and 100% *right* in that conviction) to be safe in leaving the coop door open. What is your run made of, and also what prevents things from going over the sides or digging under?

    there are ALOT of ants in the area of the coop, is this good or bad, i figure it to be good, more food, right?

    I am not sure chickens eat a lot of most ants (most ants produce formic acid as a predator deterrent which makes them taste -- and smell! -- rather yucky when crushed). I haven't seen mine doing it anyhow. But as long as they're not fire ants and/or any other kind of ants that actually bother the chickens, I wouldn't worry about it. Seems like it'd take an unrealistic number of ants to put a meaningful dent in the chicken's feed supply [​IMG]

    the coop has vent holes in it for air movement with wire over the holes. Do i need to ever close these holes, like in winter or anything?

    I wouldn't, unless cold air is blowing straight in at cold chickens in which case you'd want to close the upwind vents, or unless rain is blowing in and getting the litter wet in which case ditto. Even if you are in a cold climate the chickens need ventilation all year round (though way up north you may want to close it off on the coldest nights and reopen during the days).

    Have fun,

    Pat​
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2008
  3. Gazinga

    Gazinga Chook Norris

    Thsnks alot Pat! ive sen alot of your replies on here and they always seem helpful.that pretty much answered all my questions. they arnt fire ants, only black ants, and my run seems pretty secure. I have chicken wire a fott deep around the parimeter and also have a chicken wire mesh underlayment over teh entire floor to stop critters from digging in. Chicken wire mesh totaly encompasses the entire run and around the bottome two feet i doubled up on the wire to prevent critters from reaching through. Does this sounds pretty good?
     
  4. can you hear me now?

    can you hear me now? Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I know you did your homework but did you use hardware wrap as well?Chicken wire is not 100% sturdy and I would definitly be able to be broken given a larger predator like a dog. Also a racoon may be able to reach into the wire and get a chicken. I don't have mine with hardware wrap yet i can't afford it yet but i have electricity surrounding it to deter bigger animals until i can get it.
     
  5. Chirpy

    Chirpy Balderdash

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    Gazinga wrote:
    also have a chicken wire mesh underlayment over teh entire floor to stop critters from digging in.

    That sounds like you mean the coop/run floor has wire mesh and that's what the chickens are walking on? If so, that's not good for their feet (chickens love to scratch around in the dirt) and you might want to consider taking it out of the coop/run area(s) and just bury the wire down at least 15 inches around the perimeter.​
     
  6. Gazinga

    Gazinga Chook Norris

    well, the wire mesh is buied about 4 inches under the floor covered in dirt, and i have three layers of chicken wire around the lower two feet of teh coop stacked in a way to create smaller holes to try and deter teh perdators, i think i will also add teh electric wire as well, does this sounds like its doing good? [​IMG]

    this forum is great! you guys a a huge help![​IMG]
     
  7. Momo

    Momo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think that if a dog wanted to get into your coop it would go through the chicken wire like tissue paper. Sorry, but I've seen it happen.
     
  8. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    If the run is composed entirely of chickenwire (nothing stronger), doubled or not I would have to agree with the above posters.

    Mind, some people do seem to be finding older-style heavier gauge chickenwire. Take a look at yours.

    What might be instructive, if you have a leftover piece a foot or two long, is to take a scissors or wire cutter and cut one internal wire (just one, so that two meshes are now one) then hand the thing to the very strongest person you can find, have him (or her I guess [​IMG]) put his/her feet on the bottom part of the wire and grab it by the 'broken' mesh with his/her hands, and pull as hard as possible. If it rips, I would not trust it for a moment with dogs or raccoons.

    (I have chickenwire, bought for garden use, that lil' old couch potato me can, trying very very hard, rip apart this way... which is why I mention it)

    Good luck,

    Pat
     
  9. Gazinga

    Gazinga Chook Norris

    once agian, thanks Pat, and everyone for the help

    i will try this today. I have noticed that the chicken wire i used does seem quite strong. however, after all my trouble thus far to build a good home for my girls, and all the sage advce i am reciveing about the chicken wire, i will be stopping by the hardware store for some hardware wire today for the lower two feet of the run and coop windows at least. Ill fel better not taking any chances.
     

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