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Happy Mother's Day! A few design questions

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by AinaWGSD, May 14, 2010.

  1. AinaWGSD

    AinaWGSD Songster

    Apr 2, 2010
    Sullivan, IL
    So, for my first official Mother's Day, my present was 6 bags of concrete and 4x4x12 treated lumber. Hubby's gonna build me a chicken coop! I was so happy last weekend. Of course, now comes the part that strains our marriage as we finalize the coop plans and actually start construction. So far we have a really vague idea of what we're going to do. About the only thing that we're sure of at this point is size (8'x8') and that we want it to be a raised coop so that the chickens can make use of the space under the coop as part of the run.

    Last night, DH was up late trying to figure out how to incorporate low vents. The coop will have at least two windows, plus the pop door, and as of right now we are planning on making two "window" type vents at the apex of the roof facing out towards the run (the current plan is to have an extended roof so that at least part of the run is covered). Unfortunately, he wasn't really able to find the information he was looking for. How important are the low vents and does anyone have any ideas on how to build them so that the coop can be adequately ventilated yet also well insulated for winter?

    We are also kicking around nest box ideas. The original idea was to have "external" type nest boxes that we could access from outside of the coop, but DH is starting to feel that he wouldn't be able to insulate them well enough (did I mention he's totally over engineering this thing?) so now we are looking at other options. He mentioned something of an idea on how to have nest boxes that we could still access from outside the coop without having boxes sticking out (like somehow opening the wall instead of lifting a roof? I'm not sure as I didn't quite follow his train of thought and he didn't draw me a picture so I can't really visualize what he was talking about). But I think we would be fine just having nest boxes inside the coop and going into the coop to collect the eggs. His concern is that opening the door to go into the coop would allow too much cold air in during the winter (to which I pointed out we would have to open the door several times a day anyway to check on their water). Thoughts?

    I'm sure I'll think of a lot more questions as this project really gets off the ground. Speaking of which, anyone care to guess how many LF would comfortably fit in a coop of that size? Hubby seems to think it could hold about 25 birds, although neither of us currently plans on keeping that many (at least not for more than the time it would take to grow them out to a decent eating size...even then we were thinking about 15 or so max).
    Last edited: May 15, 2010
  2. skyblues22

    skyblues22 In the Brooder

    Apr 15, 2010
    Well someone is probably come up with different numbers, but inside a coop, you need 4sqft per chicken, in the run you need 10sqft per chicken. Your coop should hold no more than 16 chickens. As the type of door for getting eggs etc, I am making mine be the "wall"that opens and closes, I see it as wind not being able to pass through as easily, and minimal amount of leaks. If you would like I can send you pic's of how mine is done...Maybe help you on your choice, or not... [​IMG]
  3. krcote

    krcote Songster

    May 21, 2008
    Concord, NH
    In cold climates, such as mine I do 2 sqft per bird inside- hotter climates you have a harder time properly ventilating at that number. It is cold 99% [​IMG] of the time here, there is a larger benefit to having the birds closer together than farther apart than say in FL. So your coop could fit about 30 chickens up here as long as they have room to roam outside. Good luck!

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