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Dirt floor okay covered with deep bedding?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Jimagination, Apr 15, 2007.

  1. Jimagination

    Jimagination Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 17, 2007
    Lancaster, PA
    Ok, I am in the process of planning and building my coop. We have a three level house in the back due to the walk out basement and a bi level deck. It is rather large. The taller level you can walk under and still have a few feet above your head. I am planning on using this part as my coop. The previous owners had already built sort of a shed under their witha roof that is complete with tar papare and keeps all weather out and one side with aluminum siding. Two sides have the lattice that is used to cover deck bases, one side is the house and the other is open to the other lower deck which is about 4 feet high. I am planning on chicken wiring around the lattice, the side next to the house, the side to the lower level and about 6 inches under ground so predators can get in. The area is completely out of weather and will stay dry. there is a possibility that I am going to close off one of the sides with plywood as well to protect more. We will see when we are actually building it. Right now the floor has some ratty old platforms down that teh previous owners used to store wood, but they are really gross, so I will be removing them. I was planning on just keeping the dirt floor and using the deep litter method, but my husband questioned that. He thought a hard floor would be better. Would it? As for perches, I was planning on hanging an old wooden ladder horizontally and also hanging their feed and waterer. For nesting boxes, I was planning on using old wooden crates. Also at some point in the next couple of weeks I am planning on building a run that connects to this so they can be out when Iam not with them. They will free range when we are. Luckily I am a teacher and have the summer off so will be out there a lot! SUN PLEASE COME SOON! [​IMG] (Unfortunately, I have seasonal affective disorder and this weather is killing me- the chickens are the only thing keeping me sane!) [​IMG] Back to the point.... Do you think a floor is needed and what do you think of my plans thus far?
    Thanks, Jodi
     
  2. MarkR

    MarkR Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 11, 2007
    Ivy, Virginia
    Jodi,

    That's the way I do it. Just make sure you seal any drafts. And I wouldn't do it unless you have a very secure run/pen. If predators can get to the coop, with a dirt floor, they WILL get in. You can bury a chicken wire down around 10 inches around the edges and that will help if not eliminate that problem. Also, you'll be cleaning out more often, even with the deep litter method just because of the moisture. I, personally, don't mind all of this though, because it gives me time alone, outside, to sort of get rid of work vibes. Healthier than drinking a six pack. I'm a teacher as well. Can't wait for summer.

    The ladder should work if they're roosting on the rungs. I wouldn't think they'd want to roost on the uprights because they couldn't grip around them. As far as nest boxes, go, I use the larger milk crates you can find in the stores that students use for furniture (real milk crates are a little small, unless you have banties, IMHO). I must admit, I'm glad my chickens can't surf the web, because if they saw some of the coops folks around here have made, they'd have some serious coop-envy. Sounds like you have everything going well.

    Good luck and have fun!

    Mark
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2007
  3. justusnak

    justusnak Flock Mistress

    Jodi...I have a dirt/gravel floor in my coop. The chickens just love it...they can dustbath in there, even on rainy days. I cover the area where they roost with straw...easier to clean. They have been in there just over a year...so far, so good.

    MarkR...I agree....glad the chickens can't sure the web. Compared to some I have seen on here, mine live in the ghettos!! LOL
    But, they are warm...dry..and happy 11 hens...10 to 11 eggs a day
     

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