Does my coop need to be enclosed? Sorry, *Pic Heavy*

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by R.M. Hens, May 13, 2011.

  1. R.M. Hens

    R.M. Hens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 27, 2011
    Pearl River, LA
    I am a first time chicken owner and here are a few pics of my coop and yard. I do not let my girls free range because 1- I like my grass. [​IMG] and 2- the fenced in yard we have is huge and plenty big enough for them. They are happy chickens. [​IMG]

    After going through so many different (and may I say beautiful) coop pics on BYC, I see that most, if not all, of them are closed in like a house. Mine, however, is not, as you will see from the pictures. So far I have not had any problems with the coop, nest boxes, or predators. The only problem I do have is getting my girls not roost in the nest boxes at night. I move them to the roost everynight (from the nest boxes) but 2 of them always go back. [​IMG] Other than that all is good in chicken world. So does my coop need to be enclosed? Oh, I am in southern Louisiana. So no worries of snow and we have rather mild temps in the winter and of course just plain ole' HOT [​IMG] in the summer.

    Any comments or suggestions are greatly appreciated.

    1- The yard

    2- The yard cont. (there was grass but we all know what chickens do to grass)

    3- Coop

    4- One of my girls doin' her thing!

    5- more yard
  2. mrsengeseth

    mrsengeseth Chillin' With My Peeps

    You don't *Have to* do anything. It's your yard and your flock. What potential predators do you have in your area? I would use that as a starting point. If there is the potential that you may have some night predation, I would concider closing it in somehow, at least enough to slow down would-be threats. But you know your area and the needs of your birds. [​IMG]
  3. ninabeast

    ninabeast Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 10, 2011
    Upstate New York
    You might get responses telling you that you're going to have problems with predators, and you might, but, to my inexperienced eye, your chickens look happy and safe. Yes, there is always a first time, and that would be heartbreaking, but, if it's working for you I say go for it. Be happy. I love the look of your run, especially how you incorporated the tree.

    How long have you had this set up? Any neighbourhood dogs? Any hawks?
  4. chicmom

    chicmom Dances with Chickens

    Feb 24, 2009
    Strasburg Ohio
    That's a very nice setup! What state do you live in? Do you get harsh winters? I think people coops like yours, and they call them "Open Air" coops.

    Looks fine to me!

  5. bburn

    bburn Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 9, 2010
    Delaware, Arkansas
    It would scare me to death.

    Just lost three hens to racoons. After a year of no problems and they dug in and climbed over into a weak spot in the run.

    It would scare me.
  6. oldiabird

    oldiabird Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 30, 2011
    Audubon, Iowa
    I'm guessing the reason that they are roosting in the nests is because the nests are higher than the roosts, and if given a choice, my birds for some reason or other seem to like the roosts that are flat rather than in a ladder fashion. I didn't really think I had a lot of problem with predators and had an enclosed run which I opened up during the day and had been closing mu coop up every nite except the night before Mothers Day, when I went out to check and found 36 dead chickens and 6 dead guineas and had to lose three more before I found the culprit, a MINK , must have moved in under my coop. I hope I got him!! I will no longer leave doors open to my coop.
  7. savingpurple

    savingpurple Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 2, 2011
    NW Ohio
    I know I could never have that here (NW Ohio) although would love to. I have fox, racoon, and probably coyote. Possums, and weasils too. Mine have to be so locked up tight at night, it's not even funny! Plus we have harsh winters. Oh,add hawks to the mix of predators!

    Love what you have though!
  8. JackE

    JackE Overrun With Chickens

    Apr 26, 2010
    North Eastern Md.
    I would think about enclosing it in hardware cloth. You never know when something hungry is going to show up at night. As far as the 2 chickens roosting in the nest boxes. Some chickens like to roost as high as possible. And your nest boxes are the highest thing there. I'll bet if you lower your nest boxes, they will stay on the roosts.

    Dang, Oldiabird beat me to it. (High nest boxes) I'm a hunt and peck typer, Typist?
    Last edited: May 13, 2011
  9. R.M. Hens

    R.M. Hens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 27, 2011
    Pearl River, LA
    I have had this setup since the beginning of April and so far no problems. (knock on wood) Coons, possums, hawks and foxes are definite predators in my area, but I have not seen any on or close to my property in the four years that I have owned it. I know they can climb fences, but I hope to finish fencing off my entire lot in the near future. This would put a fence between the chicken yard and a patch of woods that is very close to the yard. I was also thinking of putting a pop open door (sheet of plywood with hinges) in the front of the coop that I can close every night but also open in the day.

    Thanks chicmom! I live in southern Louisiana, we do get a few nights each year of freezing temps but other than that our winters are very mild.
  10. R.M. Hens

    R.M. Hens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 27, 2011
    Pearl River, LA
    Quote:Thanks Jack and Oldiabird!

    Ahh, I see. I think that can be changed pretty easily or atleast I hope so because they are driving me crazy with not roosting on the roost. What type of hardware cloth would you suggest? Chicken wire will keep the chickens in but not keep predators out right?

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