First Coop ????

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by LizaBlue, Oct 28, 2010.

  1. LizaBlue

    LizaBlue Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 26, 2010
    Wee Acres
    Renovating 2 stalls of a barn (more like a glorified lean-to, lol) on our property into a home for our first chickens and needless to say, we have lots of questions. The back wall is solid except for a small gap caused by corrugated tin roofing, and there is one other solid wall. We're in West TN so weather goes upper 20's to just over 100 in summer, and the barn is on hill - it gets good drainage and breezes. We plan to start with 5-10 chickens and the space is 10X14' with a dirt floor. So that's the background, onto the questions!

    1) How big should nesting boxes be? 12" square looked puny to me, and 16" causes math. Do chickens need turn around room and such?

    2) How wide should perches be? I'm thinking no more than 3-4" or else their butts will be getting them all poopy.

    3) Is a dirt floor okay? Do we need to pour concrete?

    4) What equipment do you consider a must have for your henhouse?

    5) Can you use grass clippings for litter on the floor? I'm afraid they'll be too wet, but they are free...

    I'm sure I'll be posting more questions as soon as I remember what my dh told me to ask...
  2. Cargo

    Cargo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 28, 2010
    Farmington, NM
    First: [​IMG]

    12x12 for std chickens is fine and 14x14 for heavy breeds. Height can go anywhere from uncovered down to 16" or so.

    I like a 2x4 with flat side up. So 3.5". This allows them to keep toes warm in winter.

    Dirt floor is fine. You will need to bury wire fencing to keep digging predators out.

    Electricity/light and running water. are both grate to have.

    Grass would be pretty wet and cause a humidity issue. Plus the bottom could mold and hurt the girls. Dried pine needles are fine or straw or pine shavings or dried leaves. Anything that is dry pretty much.

    Questions are always welcome here.

    Also,we will need pics of your project as you go.

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