Food and water in Coop design

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Holyhabanero, Mar 15, 2011.

  1. Holyhabanero

    Holyhabanero In the Brooder

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    I live in the high desert which has cold winters and hot summers, so as I'm designing my chicken tractor, I'm wondering if I need to have feeders and waterers both inside the coop and outside in the run? Or can I just provide them both inside the coop and my chickens will need to come inside to eat and drink?
     
  2. Lesa

    Lesa Songster

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    I have both food and water inside the coop. They come in when they want it. When it gets warm (above freezing) I do leave a waterer outside, which they seem to enjoy- but I don't think is necessary... Are you going to have a tractor and a coop?
     
  3. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    If your run is covered (which most tractor runs are I think), then you can save space by keeping them outside - plus this encourages the birds to get outside. If your pop door is always open, this would probably be your best bet, since space in most tractor housings are usually pretty tight. Now, if your pop door is shut at night and you tend to sleep in, it's probably a good idea to have them available in both places. In my big coop, space is not an issue, so I keep food/water available in both places. However, in my smaller coop, I will probably only offer water inside (in part to keep it from freezing in winter time), and keep the food outside.
     
  4. Holyhabanero

    Holyhabanero In the Brooder

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    Quote:It will be a tractor. Here is a design similar to the one I'm making, though mine is a bit bigger both in the coop and the run.
    [​IMG]
     
  5. Lesa

    Lesa Songster

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    Cute design! If it were mine, I would keep the food and water under the coop. This way you save room in the run and the coop. Of course, that only works with above freezing temps...
     
  6. elmo

    elmo Crowing

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    Whatever you decide, be sure to think carefully about designing ease of access. You want to make it easy to add feed and water and to clean up around them, especially the feeder. I put a plastic plant saucer under my feeder to catch the food that gets billed out so it doesn't go on the ground, then get wet and grow dangerously moldy.

    For food and water inside the coop, you would probably want to consider putting the vessels on blocks of some kind to raise them up above the level of the floor litter. This helps keep them cleaner from litter that gets scratched around.

    p.s. Forgot to mention: if you put the feeder in the run, you'll want to make sure it's covered from rain, because wet feed can grow mold.
     
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2011
  7. sunnyvera

    sunnyvera Songster

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    I live in Ohio so in the winter, I have food and water in the coop (waterer has a homemade heat source under it). In the summer, I put the large waterer only outside. They are outside all day anyway (except to lay an egg) and it is easily accessible. They seem to drink more in the summer anyway so the large fount is perfect. I would not put food outside, I think it would attract other critters or get damp. Even with a cover, it would get damp, I think.
     

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