Duck/Chicken Housing/Coops/Secure Runs Questions

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by SmittenWithDucks, Sep 3, 2009.

  1. SmittenWithDucks

    SmittenWithDucks Out Of The Brooder

    Jun 8, 2009
    Lockhart, TX
    Our Situation:

    Our current flock consists of seven ducks and six chickens. Next year our plans are to expand to about 12 of each plus a couple of geese!

    We live in South/Central Texas so do not get the winters that many of you do. Heat is more of a problem down here!

    Our birds free range together in a 1/3+ acre fenced area. Currently they are penned at night in the same secure run since the chickens roost and don’t take up any floor space. However, we want to give them two separate areas and I was wondering about our planned setup for the runs/coops.

    My Husband had a GREAT find on Craig’s List. Someone was getting rid of some shipping/packing crates that measure 5’ x 8’ x 7’. Well constructed. We will have to add roosts, nest boxes, windows and ventilation but the basic structure is there! We got two and our helpful friend (who provided the 5th wheel trailer and pickup/delivery) got three. They survived being pulled off the trailer by the tractor so they seem pretty solid!

    Decisions (Help!):

    We can either provide two coops, one for the chickens and one for waterfowl or put the two crates together for one 8 x 10 coop for the chickens with some storage space. Then provide the ducks/geese with dog houses or something along those lines for shelter. From some of the threads on BYC it seems ducks don’t appreciate a coop as much as chickens and don’t need as much protection from the elements. Thoughts?

    For their secure runs, we have 6’ chain link with hardware cloth around the bottom. Topped with? We would also place some sort of semi-permanent roofing over a portion of each run to provide shade. Would it be okay for them to ‘share’ a center panel?

    They free range all day and would only be locked up in their runs at night or if we are out of town and don’t have a bird wrangler lined up to take care of them.

    Sorry this is so long but I wanted to get some opinions of those that have gone before me on these issues! That way maybe we won’t have to redo anything too many times!

    BYC and all of it’s members are great! Thanks for your help!
  2. Dances with Ducks

    Dances with Ducks Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sounds like you have a lot together for this project!! You are on track about the waterfowl not needing/wanting much protection from the elements - mostly predator proofing. So use that space for the storage if you want to.
    By sharing a central panel do you mean just separating the ducks and chickens with a fence? That would work fine.
    Do you know what predators are around? Usually you want to top your pen with something stronger than chicken wire. Hardware cloth is the best.

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