Hillbilly Hen House-A Pallet Coop Story *PIC HEAVY!*

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by HaikuHeritageFarm, Jul 25, 2010.

  1. HaikuHeritageFarm

    HaikuHeritageFarm Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 7, 2010
    Anchorage, AK
    Well, still catching up a bit.

    Almost immediately after moving out of the city a few weeks ago, I checked with the landlord about keeping chickens, and upon her OK, found a flock of Delawares on Craigslist. Before I could pick them up, however, I had to build myself a hen house.

    Since my birds were going to be a bit spendy and money is tight lately, I went looking around the cabin for anything I could use. There was a large burn pile the landlord had asked us to take care of at some point and I was able to find a good deal of what I needed there. A lot of the process was matching up different lengths and "putting together the puzzle", so to speak. The basis of the structure was two pallets, one on either end, a few 2x4s to frame up the front and back, and various strips of plywood and T-111.

    This is what I came up with:


    The nest boxes will be placed at the end with the partial pallet, and roosts will be made out of the 2x2s on the other end. For the time-being, the birds are enjoying roosting outside on the temporary roosts resting between the fence and the hen house.


    The BF later attached the door after having a couple of beers…it needs a bit of work. The roof was salvaged from the yard, a remnant from the house and various other out buildings. It’s not yet nailed down and may be replaced with plywood, eventually, since there is already a tin roof over the entire structure. Either way, the “roof” will have hinges so I can get in there with a shovel when I need to clean it out.


    I covered the slatted pallets with plastic from the bag our mattress came in, just stapled it up there. This blocks wind, and I’m thinking when winter rolls around it will be easy to stuff the pallets with straw or something for extra insulation.

    The opening along the top of the back will be closed off with plywood for the winter, relying on the door being opened up daily to air the coop out.


    Over all, I think it turned out pretty well. It will eventually need to be expanded, total dimensions are about 4×6 which is only 2.66 square feet each for my 9 birds…but I don’t think I will be wintering that many, and even in the winter the birds will have access to the covered yard if they want.

    Oh, I forgot…so far, I haven’t spent one red cent on the whole thing and only have maybe 3 hours of construction in it. Can’t beat that!!!
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 25, 2010
  2. isabrownmom

    isabrownmom Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 5, 2009
    [​IMG] It looks great for FREE! My biggest concern is that it doesn't look very predator proof! Are coons a big issue were you are at??
  3. HaikuHeritageFarm

    HaikuHeritageFarm Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 7, 2010
    Anchorage, AK
    We don't have raccoons, we have weasels and ermine, eagles, ravens, hawks, foxes, and brown and black bears. It's NOT very predator proof yet, but so far no problems. There's alot of action around the place and the dog is out patrolling frequently, so I think that has helped. Most concerned about the foxes and ermine, but I've heard foxes and ermine are pretty sensitive to the scent of a dog and will steer clear if there are other options, so we might be ok until winter, at least.

    After the nest boxes are in place and that last strip along the back goes up, it will be secure. (Unless a bear wants to get into it, but I don't have the means to build fort knox so....)

    Admin, is there a way to re-size the images other than go into my computer and do it one by one and save duplicates? Everything else I use automatically resizes them.
  4. lurky

    lurky Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 4, 2007
    Western MA
    That is adorable......... but winter will come fast, so its good your thinking about that part of it. post an ad on craigslist for any supplies that might help you.
    Being so small you wont need alot of anything. Alot of people have scrap stuff left over.
  5. Kanga77510

    Kanga77510 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 10, 2009
    Santa Fe, TX
    Nice job! Yes, get ready for winter soon. Sutton is outside of Palmer, right? I grew up in Wasilla. [​IMG]
  6. cfdf

    cfdf Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 12, 2010
    [​IMG] Ellie May Clampet couldn't have done a better job! I love your resourcefulness. Great job. I give it a 2 thumbs up [​IMG]
  7. NevadaRon

    NevadaRon Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 28, 2010
    That's an excellent coop! [​IMG] Some good looking birds, too. Congratulations! [​IMG]
  8. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    Hey, I'm impressed with what you've accomplished!

    I understand dial up members would have trouble waiting for the photos, but I appreciated the size and resolution.
  9. sport14692

    sport14692 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 17, 2011
    Carencro, La
    Good idea, we have a lot of pallets here. i will take em home

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