Hello everyone! I'm a new member... with a few questions.

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by Raderby Ranchin, Nov 2, 2015.

  1. Raderby Ranchin

    Raderby Ranchin Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 2, 2015
    Hello everyone. My user name is "Raderby Ranchin" as in "Rather be Ranching" then living and working in the city. I've lived in cities all my life but I'm slowing making my way to country living. I've recently started a backyard flock. I have two Australorps and one each of a Barred Rock, Buff Orpington, Ameraucana, and a Brahma. They are 9 weeks old. I built them a coop out of "reclaimed wood." They need more space, so here are my questions.

    1. The setup I built is a coop over a pen/run. I am using hay on top of dirt for flooring and find it easy to clean, will this cause them to lay eggs of the floor?
    2. Since I must build a bigger run I was planning on turning the existing coop into a nesting area and build a new coop. Can I enclose the top and four sides where the roost will be and leave the new coop bottomless? Since the new coop will be over cement, cleaning would be that much easier. Just hosing it down.
    3. I've read they like dust baths. Should I replace hay with sand for flooring in the old pen/run or leave as is and use a wooden crate or trough filled with sand on the cement side?
  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    [​IMG] They may lay in the hay on the floor, but will more likely prefer an enclosed nest box.

    2) Your coop plan may work depending upon where you are located. I would not try this in a particularly cold area.

    3) You can provide a box of soil/sand for them to use as a dust bath.

    Good luck at eventually making that transition to the country - there's no better living.
  3. Michael OShay

    Michael OShay Chicken Obsessed

    May 14, 2014
    Welcome to BYC. Glad you decided to join our flock. X2 on sourland's answers. Or I like to use a flat box with wood ash in it for my chickens to bathe in. In my experience, wood ash seems to do an even better job than dirt, dust, or sand in controlling lice and mite infestations. If you haven't done so already, definitely check out our Learning Center at https://www.backyardchickens.com/atype/1/Learning_Center. There is lots of useful information there. Please feel free to ask any questions you may have. We are here to help in any way we can. Cheers.
  4. BantamFan4Life

    BantamFan4Life LOOK WHAT YOU MADE ME DO. Premium Member

    Jun 15, 2012
    Welcome to BYC!
  5. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
  6. Teila

    Teila Bambrook Bantams Premium Member

    Howdy Raderby Ranchin and welcome to BYC

    I agree that your climate will definitely be a factor in the bottomless coop. My coop is slightly raised but the slatted timber floor is removable for easy cleaning.

    However, I live in Aus and the coop is only used for sleeping and laying eggs, the rest of the time is spent in the run or supervised free ranging in the garden; regardless of the time of year there is pretty much no chance of them getting cold. I also only have a flock of 6 bantams. For these reasons, my coop floor is bare timber off which I sweep the overnight poops every morning. I take the floor out once a week for a good clean. Is a removable floor an option for you?

    My run is deep litter so basically, one big dust bath. However, I do have an area which is set aside as a dust bath.

    With the heat, I prefer to not have a solid cover on the run and have wire and shade cloth but this does cause an issue when raining.

    Trying to keep deep litter dry in a tropical zone prone to torrential downpours and flooding is tricky but I put rain coats [as I like to call them] on the run when a storm is imminent. They are not pretty but they do the job.
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2015
  7. Elaine Wright

    Elaine Wright Chillin' With My Peeps

    I spend time in the learning center and I found a kind of local thread. What I know is climate makes a huge difference in coop design. My problem is how wet it is here. My sister in Australia has to worry about heat. There is a lot of information available here. I've tried deep litter, but I've gone to poop boards recently.

    Welcome to BYC.
  8. N F C

    N F C phooey! Premium Member Project Manager

    Dec 12, 2013

    As you can tell from the previous posters, there is no hard and fast rules to some things...it's whatever works best for you. Sometimes you just have to experiment with a couple things to figure that out.

    It's nice to have you here, thanks for joining us!
  9. Raderby Ranchin

    Raderby Ranchin Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 2, 2015
  10. Raderby Ranchin

    Raderby Ranchin Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 2, 2015
    Thanks for the link.
  11. Raderby Ranchin

    Raderby Ranchin Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 2, 2015
    Thank you

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