1. Come check out hundreds of awesome coop pages (and a few that need suggestions) in our 2018 Coop Rating Project!

Guidance for a portable chicken coop to house 6 chickens

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by FirstTimeFlock, Feb 5, 2017.

  1. FirstTimeFlock

    FirstTimeFlock In the Brooder

    So I have been doing a lot of reading & searching online for tips & plans to build a portable chicken coop to house the 6 chickens we will be getting in April. (They will be 4 weeks old when we get them. I have ordered 2 Easter Eggers, 2 Silver Laced Wyandottes & 2 Speckled Sussexes.)

    What I have found is that I will need a minimum of 24 square feet for the coop & at least 60 square feet for the run. I would like to have 3 nesting boxes, but how far they should be off of the ground seems to vary depending on who you listen to - one source says 10-20" while another source says 24". I also plan to include a 5' long roost. (Is that big enough?) Other notes of things to include our consider are:
    Dust baths box (2' X 2' X 16") (plastic bin?)
    Poop boards
    Grain feeder (big enough to hold enough feed for the flock for one day)
    Feed pans (for supplements)
    Calcium (1lb oyster shells/ 100lb of feed once chickens start laying)

    1 quart of water /day/ 4 chickens
    1/4-1/3 lb feed /day/ chicken (organic mix /non GMO commercial pre-mix)

    My questions are these: Did I miss anything? Is there anything else I should consider that will make my life easier in the long run? (ie: Tips on things to include in coop plans to make cleaning the coop easier) Can anyone point me to a good resource for plans? I have found thousands of plans, but am overwhelmed by the number of choices (& find it difficult to refine my search to only include portable coops that house at least 6 chickens).

    TIA for your help!

  2. Teila

    Teila Bambrook Bantams Premium Member

  3. FirstTimeFlock

    FirstTimeFlock In the Brooder

    Thank you! I had some issues posting as I am using my Android & had to search "How to post" to discover I needed to change to desktop settings in order to post. Definitely still getting the hang of things. Thanks!
  4. christwodog

    christwodog Songster

    Jan 16, 2017
    I have 6 chickens in a tractor coop that we built ourselves, it's 12 feet long, 6.5 feet high, 5 feet wide - we do let our chickens free range quite a bit whenever someone is home from work. But they do fine in there for extended periods of time. Our tractor is heavy to move because we put a metal roof on it, but it is moveable. I highly recommend the pvc feeder tubes, inexpensive to make and they keep lots of food clean and dry. I have 2 tube feeders (hubs made them in about 15 min), and I check them once a week, usually just topping them off. We have the 5 gallon water dispenser with the horizontal nipple dispensers. I clean it out once a week, but could go longer if necessary. Water stays clean regardless how much they poop on the lid, which they will! For their dust bath in the coop, I got a kitty litter pan from the grocery store, it works well and cheap enough to replace when it gets gross.
    All 6 chickens fit on a 5 foot roost, they all like to cram together anyway. I have 2 nest boxes which seems fine, because they like to lay their eggs where the others lay theirs. I recommend getting the boxes that you can block off until they are ready to start laying, so they don't get into the habit of sleeping in the nest boxes. I'm still learning as I go, this site has so much info to take in! Good luck, Erin
  5. redsoxs

    redsoxs Crowing

    Jul 17, 2011
    North Central Kansas

    X2 on the above but no worries...it takes awhile to get the hang of things on BYC - I've been a member for years and I'm learning new things all the time!
  6. FirstTimeFlock

    FirstTimeFlock In the Brooder

    Thank you! Some great advice! I had already been considering the pvc feeders, but didn't consider closing off the nesting boxes! Kitty litter pan is another great tip that I think I will use! Again, thanks!
  7. Cynthia12

    Cynthia12 Always Grateful Premium Member

    Apr 11, 2010

  8. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
    Thank you for joining us at Backyard chickens
  9. N F C

    N F C phooey! Premium Member Project Manager

    Dec 12, 2013

    It looks to me like you've already done a lot of homework so I'll just say hello!
  10. CuzChickens

    CuzChickens CountryChick

    Apr 24, 2016
    Hello there, and welcome to the flock! Thanks for joining us at BYC, please pull up a chair and make yourself at home! I hope you enjoy yourself here as much as I have! :frow


BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by