Harvey Ussery's pasture shelter design

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by turtleblossom, Jun 15, 2008.

  1. turtleblossom

    turtleblossom Chillin' With My Peeps

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  2. WoodlandWoman

    WoodlandWoman Overrun With Chickens

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    Sometimes, that style of coop is meant to be used with other predator control measures, like perimeter fencing or guard animals. If it was just out in the open on it's own, I would worry about animals digging underneath it or the lightweight poultry netting being torn open. I don't know what your exact situation is, but those are the things I would think about. If that's the only protection they have, I would definitely use a different wire or layer a stronger wire over it.

    Are you thinking about using it for layers year round? If so, I think they would need additional shelter during the winter, to stay warm enough. I'm not sure what your winter weather is like. Maybe you could enclose part of it for winter.
     
  3. Davaroo

    Davaroo Poultry Crank

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    WW has some valid concerns. The term 'pasture shelter' implies a protected paddock where it will be placed. Given that, 'ol Harvey knows his stuff, for sure. That design is ultra simple to construct and is low cost. It offers more than adequate protection from the elements. In Harveys words:

    "I like the A-frame structure for a shelter, which provides more structural integrity for less weight, and is more stable in the wind, than more boxy designs."

    It also addresses my pet concern: ventilation.

    I would take WW's comments and run with them.
    Replace the poultry net with welded wire fencing.
    Conisder the same as "floor" in the shelter if preds are going to be a concern.
    KY winters aren't too harsh, but subfreezing temps are the enemy. Removable, plastic covered end panels and perhaps some rafter batting may be in order. I dunno.
    Harveys wheels are nice, but they leave a ground gap at the wheeled end. I'd prefer a pivoted hinge axle design. Pivot the wheel into position, move the shelter and then return the wheel to its stowed position - setting the shelter back down, flat on the ground.
    Use hanging feeders and a hanging, 5 gal waterer. The added weight of the water will help add stability.

    Just my 2 cents
     
  4. turtleblossom

    turtleblossom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    ww and elderoo,

    thanks for the good ideas. You both pointed out weak points in the coop design that I also noticed. For security, I plan on useing a welded wire skirt around the outside to help preditor proof the coop, and also on the open ends, insted of chicken wire. I live in a small town, surrounded by new development (yuck!) and so far I have had only one visit from a raccoon, he raided my trash can and left my birds alone. As far as winterizing the coop, I plan on covering the open ends with greenhouse plastic (with holes for ventilation). I also plan on raising the coop up about 12" and useing the deep bedding methode to help keep them warm. I can also put in a heat lamp if necessary. As far as the wheels go, I'm just gonna screw them off and on when I need to move it.
    The one question I have left is how many birds can I keep in this coop? With Joel Salatin's mobile broiler coop model, each bird has 1.2-1.6 sq ft of space (10' x 12' coop, 75-100 birds per coop). with my coop 8' x 9', and 47 birds inside, each bird has 1.5 sq ft. I know this may be the upper limit of what my coop will hold, but 30 of the birds are broilers and won't be around for much longer.
     
  5. Davaroo

    Davaroo Poultry Crank

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    The one question I have left is how many birds can I keep in this coop? With Joel Salatin's mobile broiler coop model, each bird has 1.2-1.6 sq ft of space (10' x 12' coop, 75-100 birds per coop). with my coop 8' x 9', and 47 birds inside, each bird has 1.5 sq ft. I know this may be the upper limit of what my coop will hold, but 30 of the birds are broilers and won't be around for much longer.

    Seems you've answered your own question. Soon you'll be down to 17 birds in there. That's manageable.​
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 16, 2008
  6. GardeningGrl

    GardeningGrl Out Of The Brooder

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    I'm looking at building the same coop this spring for my summer layer tractor (it won't have pasture fence surrounding it, but will be reinforced with welded wire, instead of just hex wire). I'm curious how it went?

    I'm also looking at extending the floor from the nesting boxes up about six feet into the shelter (after giving the nesting boxes some privacy with a bit of scrap wood) and - perhaps - building a ramp, so the girls can be tucked away safely at night. Imagine a bit more framing six feet from the end of the coop, a complete hex wire floor to that point, and then a small wooden ramp that swings down to allow the girls to access the upper levels.

    Does anyone have any experience or advice with modifications made to this design?
     
  7. GardeningGrl

    GardeningGrl Out Of The Brooder

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  8. Davaroo

    Davaroo Poultry Crank

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    Harvey's designs are great and have been a help to all. I remember when he was featured in "Backyard Poultry," when it was just a newsprint 'pulp' rag!
    I havent read his book... maybe I should get it.
     

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