Did I Make My Nesting Boxes Too High For My Silkie?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by TheIvoryKitty, Sep 24, 2011.

  1. TheIvoryKitty

    TheIvoryKitty Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 24, 2011
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    Hi guys - This is my very first post here! (Though I've been lurking around reading posts since I first got my little chickadees!)

    I received my very first little day-old chicks on 8/23/11 and now it's about to be their 5 week birthday this Monday. [​IMG] My husband and I built an 8'x10' coop without any guidance - we just decided to sort of "wing-it." I was incredibly proud of it until I just realized that our little silkie, Choco, might not be able to get up into the nesting boxes! She assuredly can't fly at all at this point, but that's fairly normal I suspect, but I dont know what will happen when she gets to full chicken-y size.

    My nest boxes are 15 inches off of the hen-house floor - is that high enough for my silkie to jump up? If not, what can I do to fix this problem, aside from tearing apart our hen-house!?

    And for those of you that like pictures, here are some!

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    *Choco looks so weird in this one* [​IMG]
     
  2. Prisserbabe

    Prisserbabe Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The chicken coop
    OH my goodness!!! I LOVE YOUR CHICKIES!!! [​IMG]
    I think it will be fine only fifteen inches off the ground. My 17 weeks hens can fly three (maybe more) feet off the ground easy!
     
  3. TheIvoryKitty

    TheIvoryKitty Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 24, 2011
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    Good - I've been so worried about it lately! I don't want to have made egg-doors in the back for nothing (because if Choco decides to lay on the floor, then I'm definitely going to have to go into the coop in the mornings to collect eggs anyway!)
     
  4. C17

    C17 Out Of The Brooder

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    Nice job!
    Question: why did you put your chicken wire on the inside?
     
  5. TheIvoryKitty

    TheIvoryKitty Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 24, 2011
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    Quote:Lol - my husband and dad asked me the same thing. I don't know, I thought it would look nicer from the outside if the wire was on the inside, and also I figured that it would make it harder for racoons and whatnot to pull at the places where the chicken wire overlaps. I dont know, like I said we really didnt have any experience in coop building, so some decisions I just made willy-nilly [​IMG] .

    Why is there something bad about that that I should know about?? [​IMG]
     
  6. Hawkeye95

    Hawkeye95 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:Lol - my husband and dad asked me the same thing. I don't know, I thought it would look nicer from the outside if the wire was on the inside, and also I figured that it would make it harder for racoons and whatnot to pull at the places where the chicken wire overlaps. I dont know, like I said we really didnt have any experience in coop building, so some decisions I just made willy-nilly [​IMG] .

    Why is there something bad about that that I should know about?? [​IMG]

    The consensus is that your wire should be put on the outside of your pen for a couple of reasons. One, that you run an "apron" (extra wire) along the bottom of the outside of your coop and let it either sit on top of the grass, or dig it down a couple of inches (not necessary to dig it down too far) and lay it under the dirt. This prevents an animal from digging under your coop. If your wire is on the inside, then you'd have to screw your apron in from the outside- it just makes it a bit harder. Also, (and I don't know how you attached yours) but screwing in washers to keep your wire in place rather than staples is the best method for securing your wire. Staples can easily be pulled out with no trouble. And... I hate to point it out because I know you did put some expense into the wire, but you used 'chicken wire' instead of using Hardware cloth-- which is a welded wire. You are probably fine for now, but just a word of caution-- dogs can bite and dig through chicken wire-- and so can raccoons, etc. If you end up having a lot of predators they'll be able to unwind the twists on the chicken wire. Chicken wire, if it is worked, actually will untwist and come apart.

    On the up side- your coop is adorable! Love it! Looks really great! And I bet your silkie will be able to reach your nest boxes by the time she's matured. She'll get pretty agile.
     
  7. yellowirenut

    yellowirenut Chillin' With My Peeps

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    on a note of your chicken wire....

    I also used it, its for chickens right, unfortunately something was trying to get in and stretching the wire. it also has gotten rusty in only 7 months time. Be prepared to change to a heavier duty wire cloth.
    Your set up looks great and to change to a different wire looks like it would be a simple change.
     
  8. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    I recommend putting a little box on the floor of the coop and she will be quite happy to lay there. I use a covered kitty litter box which is quite the hit with the girls, including my silkies. I have other traditional ones on the floor too.

    Also, you can just leave your chicken wire alone and go over the outside with some strong welded wire fencing or 1/2 inch hardware cloth (do the hardware cloth if you want to be near-predator-proof).

    I actually have a run that is chicken wire (and other runs that are other types of fencing) and am aware that dogs can get through but I've been fortunate so far. It all depends on how predator proof you are comfortable with.

    Dogs and raccoons can zip through chicken wire like it isn't even there I have heard.

    But AT NIGHT they need to be closed up in a coop and yours are. [​IMG]

    Also I just read your post where you said that you would have to go in the coop to get eggs if you put a nesting box on the floor. I recommend just waiting to see what your silkie does then. Maybe she will lay in the boxes you made!!! I hope for you- because it is dusty in the hen house and nice not to have to walk in with your nice clean clothes on.
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2011
  9. TheIvoryKitty

    TheIvoryKitty Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 24, 2011
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    Quote:That sounds like a good idea - plus I guess having wire on the outside and the inside can't hurt anything! Plus then I can put it down in the ground a few inches if needed. I had no idea that predators could destroy chicken wire like that - why the heck do they call it chicken wire then!? [​IMG] Lol.

    I think that predators will be a problem - their very first night out (2 days ago) I went outside to check on them probably every two hours (I'm a crazy mommy), and at about midnight there was something on the roof. It scrambled off when I came outside and my cat growled at it and chased it off. No idea what it was, but I'm thinking maybe a raccoon. Sigh, my poor little babies! At least they have a good guard cat!
     
  10. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    Quote:That sounds like a good idea - plus I guess having wire on the outside and the inside can't hurt anything! Plus then I can put it down in the ground a few inches if needed. I had no idea that predators could destroy chicken wire like that - why the heck do they call it chicken wire then!? [​IMG] Lol.

    I think that predators will be a problem - their very first night out (2 days ago) I went outside to check on them probably every two hours (I'm a crazy mommy), and at about midnight there was something on the roof. It scrambled off when I came outside and my cat growled at it and chased it off. No idea what it was, but I'm thinking maybe a raccoon. Sigh, my poor little babies! At least they have a good guard cat!

    hahaha yes there are many who buy chicken wire- hey I did it too--- thinking that it is to keep chickens safe. It keeps chickens out of gardens.

    If you will, do a search on here for "hardware cloth apron" or "hardware cloth buried inches" to get an idea of how deep to go. I think it is maybe one foot down and so aproning out (no burying it) with decorative rocks or just letting the grass grow over it is much easier.

    But please don't quote me on how deep to bury it as I really don't know if one foot or two feet are needed. [​IMG]
     

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