coop stress: will this work for 4?


8 Years
May 14, 2011
Englewood Colorado
My baby chicks are 2 weeks old and I am panicked because I still have no serious plans for a coop.

I found many online but they are either too expensive or too small.

I search craigslist every day, including nearby cities, to no avail.

I even posted looking for a person to build the coop, and he came out to chat about it, but I haven't heard from him in a while...

I do own a circular saw and can be handy, but the thought of building a coop really makes me worry and I'd rather have it done right. I have a great area for the coop (below), but am nervous about the run and how much space I can actually make predator-proof.

Here's one last coop online that could possibly work??

I need to add an extenstion to the run?

HELP!!!! Any advice on the amazon coop or my space would be great. I am getting worried!!! Thanks!

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Well I see 3/4 of the outside run/coop already there depending on what's on the other side of the two fence sections for digging down protection and then you have the little path way to build up from at the make a lean to coop from the garage and a run coming from that and for sure you'll be done for less than 399 for the pre-made coop...the hardest parts are already in place just fill in the middle bits !

Doesn't have to be too elaborate to start with and you can always upgrade as people do as time goes on..
I think for the price of the coop you would be ordering, you would be better off building your own coop. As thatbloke already said, you could utilize the wall of the garage as one wall of your coop. It doesnt have to be anything fancy for beautiful, just predator proof. As for the run, you have a great site. Put hardware cloth around the bottom of the wooden fence into the ground to prevent diggers and fence the rest. If you look on the coops page, you will see many easy to build coops that you could build for your girls. I have no skills but managed to build a small coop for my silkies by looking at one on the coops page. Even built my own run for it. If you feel pressed for time, you could build a pallet coop for almost nothing. Just type in pallet coop in the search box and you will see some really cool ones. If I can build a coop, anyone can do it!!!
It is true that you already have 3 walls there.

However, i will say that $400 bucks isn't a ton to pay for a good coop. Four hundred (and a good bit more) could very quickly be spent in your efforts to get everything just so, doing it yourself, depending on what your ideal is.

If you have the money to spend, and you really plan on having only four chickens, then i think i would be inclined to go with one of those cute amazon coops. They're adorable - and less stress in the construction department.

If you do go that route, i would want to let them out of the coop to run in the yard whenever it's possible. Maybe just when you're home, depending on your situation there.

It's just really a lot of fun to watch them run in open spaces.
The coop in the Amazon link looks like the ones sold under the "Ware" brand name. If you do a search here, I think you will find multiple complaints about the lack of quality of those coops. They just don't last.

The problem with ordering something online is that you can't see the quality of what you're getting before you buy, and once something is delivered it's very expensive to ship it back. I had the same problem with ordering a bird cage online and ended up keeping a product I wasn't satisfied with simply because I didn't want to waste the money for return shipping.

Where do you live? If it's someplace with a mild winter climate, you could buy one of those chainlink dog kennels (get a decent quality one), add hardware cloth on the bottom two or three feet to block reach in predation and a welded wire apron to deter digging predators, put on a corrugated metal roof, and have a good, basic coop run for not much trouble. In the winter, you could tarp the sides to provide windblock.
Do a search on ebay for "chicken coops"; you should be able to find the same one but with free shipping.

Depending on the number of chickens you plan on having, you might want to consider something like this one:

and then add a platform to get it off the ground plus a dog kennel for a larger run.

Ebay also has this one with free shipping.

This one would be fine for four chickens.

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Chiming in here even though I don't have a coop yet either (or my chickens yet either lol) but I would definitely steer you away from anything that is the "ware" brand name. The rabbit hutch I purchased from them only a few months ago has completely fallen apart and their customer service was completely unhelpful. They told me it is designed to be used in a protected area, basicly not out in the weather (and it definitely did not hold up to the weather, the screw rusted, pieces of wood just rotted
) so unless you have a roofed over area to use it in or live in a very mild, dry climate I would tell you to stay far away.
Thanks for the "Ware" advice!

I went to Home Depot today, looked through pavers for foundations & at wood...and got so overwhelmed that I just hi-tailed it out of there!

On the way home, I spotted a Tuff Shed lot with a chicken coop...for $879! Yikes!

I think that when I'm at home, I believe I can build a coop. When I get to the store, well, no pun intended, I just chicken out
The lumber can be very overwhelming, but check the cull bin! They aren't full lengths of wood, usually they are around 4', but I think it makes them perfect for building a smaller coop, less cutting! After I screwed up on the staples (I have 3/4" galvanized poultry net staples now) and had to buy another roll of fencing (the other one had rust issues), my total cost is right around $200. While on Craig's List, also check the free section, I got a truck load of pallets and 2 pallet crates that ended up being 90% of my structure! My coop is 4'x6'8" (one pallet wide, two pallets long) making it large enough to hold 6-7 chickens, but it will onlyhold 3 for now, I do plan to add to my flock next year though. As for my run, 2x4 wire fencing and hardware cloth! I do need to purchase "straight" wood for the door into the run still though, that will be most of my wood cost though (everything else came from the cull bin for 51 cents each).
I think I am going to buy this coop and plan on adding more run space as they get bigger (this is a much less daunting task for me, I think). of you fine folks, whom I do not know, but trust anyway, tells me it won't work for 4 hens (2.5 weeks old today) for the summer? I don't think it's a Ware product and the seller has decent reviews...although not particularly for chicken coops. The price is right, anyhow.

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