Do they really need a Ramp?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Ronithailand, Dec 14, 2012.

  1. Ronithailand

    Ronithailand Out Of The Brooder

    Dec 9, 2012
    I have noticed, that in most coop designs I see a ramp from the run to the coop even when its not that high off the ground.

    My coop/run design is very small and make a ramp with a useable angle was quite a challenge.

    The roost in the coop is about 24" or about 60 cm off the ground and the girls have no problems jumping there, so why do they need a ramp to the coop which is also about 24" off the ground ?

    as you can see from the pics, the ramp only leads to a small pallet that is still a 6" or 15cm just to the it no ok for them to jump?

  2. OkChickens

    OkChickens Orpingtons Are Us

    Dec 1, 2010
    Owasso, Oklahoma
    These are the roosts in my free range coop. they are 3 feet off of the ground and all of my birds can jump or fly up there with no problems. I do not really see a need for a ramp.


  3. mississippifarmboy

    mississippifarmboy collects slightly damaged strays

    A ramp is handy for small growing birds learning to use the roosts or very heavy large breeds that have trouble getting on the roosts or jumping down without bruising their feet. Most chickens do just fine without a ramp. One of our coops has a ladder/ramp to the roosts, none of the other coops do.
  4. mollycat79

    mollycat79 Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 23, 2012
    Can they ramps be made out of thick wire square mesh? I'm using a warmer mesh bit from my BBQ as a ladder for them to climb up? Will a mesh ladder hurt their feet?
  5. mpare

    mpare Out Of The Brooder

    Jul 16, 2010
    Dillsburg, PA
    We have about a 3 foot drop between the coop pop door and the outside run. Our chickens navigate that distance up and down without problems.
  6. trooper

    trooper Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 26, 2010
    [​IMG]I personally wouldn't use wire mesh for a ramp.I'm afraid that they may get their claws stuck in the holes and cause a broken leg or something of that nature.I'd rather have something solid for them to walk up and down on. [​IMG] As it goes for a ramp,I feel there should be one with that kind of height.A ramp can be placed against a wall with various offsets to get to the floor.If the chicken does get to big, getting to the roost may be a problem for her getting up on it.Also if they are to big jumping down that far could be bad.To much weight and they might hurt themselves when they hit the floor.If they have plenty of room from the roost to the wall they may be able to fly down.Another thing is that this gives them flying lessons to go to higher heights and they may try fences.[​IMG]This has to be worked out for your situation.
  7. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

    Sep 19, 2009
    Holts Summit, Missouri
    With most breeds a ramp is not needed. My adult dominiques can fly vertically to a seven foot high roost with ease and my adult games can triple that distance with ease. Juveniles of both are less capable but by time I expect them to roost in elevated locations they can muster at least a 4 foot vertical rise. Having roost higher has multiple advantages in my management system, First, it is easier to get under roosts to clean out manure and feathers. Second, when varmints like raccoons or oppossums penetrate perimeter and actually get into where birds are roosting, the added height of roost makes it more difficult for predator to catch birds and also makes so when dog comes into deal with such predators the fight is less likely to get birds flying all about. Finally, I like to harvest or otherwise handle birds at night and having roost elevated makes that easier and positions me to see leg bands without actually picking every single bird up.

    Some heavy breeds may be prone to leg and foot injuries associated with hard landings but that can be controlled by proper placement of a straw bale or other soft object the birds can land on.
    1 person likes this.
  8. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    I think MississippiFarmBoy forgot Silkies on his list of who might need a ramp. Silkies can't fly, though some can jump a surprising height.

    We each have unique circumstances. With certain breeds a ramp may come in handy, or with very young chicks. And I mean very young. I've seen two week old chicks fly two feet vertical and three feet horizontal when Mama told them to get up on the roost for the night. They jumped/flew to the top of the nests then jumped/flew to the roosts. The next morning they flew down the four feet to the coop floor. Just watching them it was obvious they could have gone a lot further, both vertical and horizontal. I've seen chicks that age perform other amazing flying fetes.

    Another unique circumstance where a ramp may come in handy is if they don't have enough room to spread their wings and fly up or down, though I think a fair amount of the wing flapping when they jump up is for balance as much as lift to certain heights. In jumping down, it's to soften the landing and balance.

    If you feel you absolutely need something and space is limited, you can provide a step instead fo a ramp. I've seen three day old chicks jump into a nest that was a tad more than a foot off the ground when Mama told them to come to bed, but that was a stretch. For extremely young chicks a ramp or maybe steps 6" to 8" high may be appropriate. I put a cinder block on the inside and outside of my pop door to accommodate Mama and her newly hatched chicks. The adults don't even jump. They basically just walk up that.

    My take on whether they need a ramp or not. Only in rare circumstances.
    1 person likes this.
  9. mississippifarmboy

    mississippifarmboy collects slightly damaged strays

    Yeah Ridgerunner, I forgot silkies, frizzles, sizzles and such.

    But then again I don't really think of them as "chickens". [​IMG]
  10. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    You are preaching to the choir, but there are some people that think of them as chickens. These may be the ones that need help. :oops:

    And I forgot the frizzles and sizzles.

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