Does my coop need a floor?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by gregwrockwell, Feb 15, 2013.

  1. gregwrockwell

    gregwrockwell New Egg

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    Dec 8, 2012
    I am about to start building my second coop and will be doing a tractor. I am trying to decide whether I want to make a "penthouse" coop above the run with a ramp, or just leave it all one level and not have a floor. The birds will sleep on the roost at night, I would have laying boxes with wood shavings in them and in the winter I can bring in a thick pile of hay for the floor of the coop.

    If I do the single level, I will probably make it about 4'X12' and 4'x4' will be walled in as the coop and 8'x4' will be the run.

    Not having to muck out the coop sounds like a delightful thing.

    I live in No. Utah, so we have cold winters. I don't have any kind of predator problem in the neighborhood.

    Any thoughts would be really appreciated.
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2013
  2. 4 the Birds

    4 the Birds Chillin' With My Peeps

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    A penthouse with floor sounds much better for the chickens. Of course it may mean more cleaning but you will have happier girls. They will dig in the hay and it will be a mess. Straw has better insulating properties and pine chips work best. Keeping them off the ground with any blowing/drifting snow would be advisable.
     
  3. acemario

    acemario Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm also from N. Utah! I would also recommend making one with a floor. Here is an example of the one we built last spring:
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  4. Our Roost

    Our Roost Chillin' With My Peeps

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    ScottsVille, michigan
    Personally, living in Michigan, we considered all coop designs and ideas. Much like northern Utah, our winters are cold. It was for that reason we decided on a permanent coop verses a tractor style coop. It was very hard to find a tractor styled coop that provided what we considered sufficient warmth and shelter during the winter months. A permanent coop was more convenient for us. Plus with all the snow, it would have to stay stationary at some point until spring. Depending on your property size, a tractor coop is excellent for a small flock of birds. It also helps to keep the ground from becoming barren if you are content with frequent relocation. We didnt like the idea of carrying water and feed daily out to different locations all the time either. On the other hand, a penthouse coop idea is used by many and there are some great ideas and pictures located under coop designs on this web site. You may find some ideas and designs liking to your needs and wants. Good luck!
     
  5. Our Roost

    Our Roost Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Beautiful coop acemario! If I had a smaller flock, this would be perfect for a backyard chicken owner with limited space. Nice job.
     
  6. 4 the Birds

    4 the Birds Chillin' With My Peeps

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    +1 on the above post. A permanent location has a ton of advantages and probably best those in the cold climates.
     
  7. gregwrockwell

    gregwrockwell New Egg

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    Dec 8, 2012
    I've had a coop in one location for the last three years. I can see that it presents advantages, but it pretty much means that part of the yard is an eternal lunar landscape of chicken destruction.

    I will have a hook from the roof for the feeder and I am putting together a nipple watering system similar to this brilliant design (https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/summer-winter-chicken-nipple-waterer).

    I'll probably end up doing the penthouse. I know one person around here who builds and sells coops without floors, and I'm pretty sure Joel Salatin's tractors don't have a floor (isn't he the popularizer of the tractor idea if not the originator?), but he's in a warmer climate than I am.

    In my plans for the single level, the coop would have enclosed walls with a narrow opening for the door so that snow wouldn't drift in. I wouldn't move it during the winter when the ground is frozen or there's snow. That's why I could see just piling in bedding and making it as cozy as possible during that time.

    This whole project has been necessitated by huge buildup of snow on my larger (but rickety) permanent chicken run which collapsed the whole thing. The run was a disgusting dirt/dropping gooey mess all the time in wet/snowy weather. Made me think it's time to think of a better solution...
     

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