Food and water inside coop or in the run

PhilSanchez

Songster
5 Years
Mar 13, 2016
135
195
156
North east Georgia mountains
Sometimes so much info on here that it is impossible to find the exact answer from the great experts here on BYC. My query, New coop 16 X 10 with an attached chain link run 16 X 30. If I place the food and water inside some will inevitably get spilled, bring in rodents? Placing outside in the run cleaner? Sounds like answering my on question, but would love to hear your experience. Thanks, Phil
 

KarynVA

Songster
May 29, 2020
810
2,953
233
SW Virginia
My coop is smaller than yours and has an attached run and I have both food and water inside the coop. I use a nipple waterer and a no-spill feeder and I've not had any problems. I live in VA in a suburb and have never seen a rat (doesn't mean there aren't any) but we do have mice in the house sometimes. So far, nothing in the coop or run.

Edited to add: my coop is elevated 2 feet off the ground.
 
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hayley3

Crowing
14 Years
Aug 16, 2007
2,072
1,956
446
Southern Indiana
Sometimes so much info on here that it is impossible to find the exact answer from the great experts here on BYC. My query, New coop 16 X 10 with an attached chain link run 16 X 30. If I place the food and water inside some will inevitably get spilled, bring in rodents? Placing outside in the run cleaner? Sounds like answering my on question, but would love to hear your experience. Thanks, Phil
I put my feed bowls inside one of those flat metal bowls from Walmart so they don't spill any food on the ground. I never put food in the coop, it's asking for trouble. I was going to post a link but evidently they don't have those on the website.
 

Ridgerunner

Crossing the Road
12 Years
Feb 2, 2009
28,071
22,786
907
Southeast Louisiana
Sometimes so much info on here that it is impossible to find the exact answer

That's because we all do things differently. Different flocks with different flock make-ups. Different goals, climates, management techniques, schedules, rural versus urban, and on and on. What works for one person does not work for another. Or more often, many different things work great. There is no one right way that works for each and every one of us with all other ways being wrong.

Some of us feed/water in the coop only. Some only feed/water outside, some don't even have runs but free range. Some of us feed and water both inside and outside. We all have our own reasons for how we choose. I'll mention a few but I'm sure I'll miss a lot.

Some of us sleep in late, we are not down there really early after the chickens wake up to let them out for food and water so they keep food and water in the coop. They wake up hungry and thirsty. Some people worry that wild birds will eat more feed than the chickens if they feed outside. Many kinds of feed need to be dry and inside may be the only dry place. If you live where it freezes and have electricity to the coop it may be easier to use a heated water dish inside.

Some feel that feeding inside attracts rodents. Chickens poop a lot. If you feed inside the chickens stay inside longer so you have more poop to deal with. The coop may be too small to put feed and water where it won't be pooped in, especially from the roosts. Waterers can leak or water spill. Watering outside may keep your coop drier.

I feed and water both inside and outside. I'm not always up at the crack of dawn to let them out. When I travel I get someone to feed and water them. It's easier to get someone if they don't have to be there at the crack of dawn. With different feed and water stations, especially water, they are less likely to run out, say they spill a waterer. My main reason is that I almost always have juveniles in the flock. With several widely scattered feeding and watering stations they all get to eat and drink without the adults bullying them away from the feed and/or water.

I don't know which way might work best for you and your lifestyle. I generally suggest to do what is most convenient for you and for whatever reasons you want to. Good luck!
 

Shadrach

Roosterist
Premium Feather Member
Jul 31, 2018
18,996
155,764
1,592
Catalonia, Spain & UK
My Coop
My Coop
Depends....
First thought is if rodents can get into either the run or coop your setup is not secure. If a rat can get in so could a weasel/mink.
The chickens here free range and we have rats; not big city rats but even so...
The coop doors are open all day so rats and mice could come and go in and out of the coops and would if there was food in them.
I don't leave food out at all. I feed 3 times a day. it takes some time but it does mean that there is much less chance of wild birds contaminating the feed, or rats and mice helping themselves. It also means I can make sure that the chickens lower in the hierachy get to eat properly.
If the birds here were contained I would probably still do this.
In general I prefer not to have anything that may attract rodents or predators into the coops.
 

drinkoj

Chicken Chaser
May 24, 2020
675
1,470
216
Upstate South Carolina
This topic has been debated to the point that marriages hinged on the collective opinions at BYC mattered; joking but almost serious.

My 2 cents worth, Food and Water outside under cover.
1) Chickens don't drink or eat at night in the coop,
2) I don't want coop bedding to create a moisture issue due to water leaks and give my chickens respiratory problems if ventilation is not as good as I think,
3) I don't want to attract pests/predators to the inside of the coop due to there being a food source in there.
 
Aug 21, 2020
419
462
131
Sometimes so much info on here that it is impossible to find the exact answer from the great experts here on BYC. My query, New coop 16 X 10 with an attached chain link run 16 X 30. If I place the food and water inside some will inevitably get spilled, bring in rodents? Placing outside in the run cleaner? Sounds like answering my on question, but would love to hear your experience. Thanks, Phil
I would not suggest food and water in the coops form water causing anomie fumes which is harmful to your chickesn and food being wasted and attracting rodents and preadtors
 

Aliyah

In the Brooder
Dec 9, 2020
8
19
15
Sometimes so much info on here that it is impossible to find the exact answer from the great experts here on BYC. My query, New coop 16 X 10 with an attached chain link run 16 X 30. If I place the food and water inside some will inevitably get spilled, bring in rodents? Placing outside in the run cleaner? Sounds like answering my on question, but would love to hear your experience. Thanks, Phil
Yes, I keep mine under my chicken coop in the run. My husband built a raised chicken coop so I keep in under the coop so it stays dry and in the shade. I am also in GE but I am in the SE. I do keep a small pan of water and small pan of feed just in case I would not make it out to let them out for some reason.
 

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