Coop too small??

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Randy17, Jul 23, 2011.

  1. Randy17

    Randy17 Out Of The Brooder

    Jul 4, 2007
    Oil City, Pa
    Hello Everyone!! It has been awhile since I have been on here.

    My first question is I have 10 3yr old hens and we got 20 chicks last week, what are the chances they will all live together in the same coop??Should I just build another coop?

    Next question is the coop we have now is 8'x8' and the roof is 7ft high and it has 6 nest boxes, is this to small for all of these hens?
    I do let them free range in the afternoons.

  2. elieugene6

    elieugene6 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 17, 2010
    Western ny
    Are they confined to the coop all day or do they have a run? They are supposed to have a minimum of 4 square ft per large fowl bird and 10 square ft per bird run size your coop now should only house a maximum of 16 large fowl birds. It might be ok for awhile but come winter you will definitely want more space. So basically to answer your question yes you should probably get started on a new coop
  3. CatDaddyAlbert

    CatDaddyAlbert NoFeathersRuffled

    Apr 22, 2011
    Gumboro, Delaware
    Quote:Randy...If your coop is 8X8 that is 64 square feet. Rule of thumb is 2 Sq Ft per bird so the math would say 32 birds easy. The old birds and the young birds should be fine together after the chicks get old. I happen to go 12 weeks before putting the young hens in with the old ones.

    Good Luck with your new birds.
  4. Hot2Pot

    Hot2Pot Fox Hollow Rabbitry

    Feb 1, 2010
    West TN
    The chicks need their own place until they are as big as the hens.
  5. hcppam

    hcppam Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thank you to all the answers many get stuck on the 4 sq thing, but as said if they are out in a nice sized run all day they can get along fine with 2 sq for basically sleeping...but the more room the happier they and you'll be. [​IMG] [​IMG]
  6. TDM

    TDM Chillin' With My Peeps

  7. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    I don't believe for a moment they will be happy with 2 sq ft if they are snowed in for weeks at a time. 2 sq ft could work where I live (with lots of outdoor space) but we really don't have winter -- no snow. We have a Canadian member who has done some good writeups on coops and who has 15 sq ft for hers, because of being snowed in (patandchickens.) If you use that coop, I believe it will need a rather large protected (from snow) run area, so they can go outdoors even with a lot of snow on the ground.

    No reason you can't put them all together once the chicks are full size. Might not work so well before then.
  8. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    Saying more than 2 sq. ft of space per chicken is overkill is ludicrous. That's like saying too much money is overkill... More space is always better. I don't have a big flock, but I can tell you that my birds behave quite differently when confined to a small space vs when they have ample space. Animal behaviors will almost always change when space is ample vs constricted.
    Many folks on BYC use the 4 sq. ft general recommendation because there's simply too many variables to take under consideration, and most folks want a set answer (and there isn't a set answer - region, bird size, bird temperament, bird purpose, etc. all factor in). During spring, summer, and fall, I'm sure my birds would do just fine with 2 sq. ft of indoor space, because they're outside from 7am until past 9PM. But come winter it's a different story, due to short days and snow/ice, and there's no way I'd try to cram my birds into a space like that and expect them to behave normally. Many laugh at the 4 sq. ft recommendation as not nearly enough space, even with ample run room.
  9. elieugene6

    elieugene6 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 17, 2010
    Western ny
    I live in the same basic climate as the op. I know 2 sq ft would work but it depends on size of birds. I gaurantee you a jersey giant cannot live in 2 sq ft space. We have long winters. The original poster didn't state whether there is a run attached just that they get to free range in the afternoon. I have sebrights and 2 sq ft per bird is more than enough. It depends on the bird.
  10. elieugene6

    elieugene6 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 17, 2010
    Western ny
    Quote:Thank you, stated beautifully. There is no way I would give my birds just 4 sq ft. My jersey giant roo could barely turn around in 2. Mine free range from 8am until just before dusk. Before 8 am they have a run that they can go out into. My Cochins are in a 8x10 shed there are 13 in there and they are bantam. I have room for more but will they be happy come winter? They have an enclosed run and can go under their coop. I don't think I will be adding the extra 6 I could fit and there is no way I would put 40 chickens in that small space. They would barely have room to move.

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