How many chickens for 4'x8'coop?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by chickenfever, Jul 23, 2008.

  1. chickenfever

    chickenfever Songster

    Jul 22, 2008
    I have never had chickens before, but in a week we are getting blk australorps, orpingtons, easter eggers, and cochins. One rooster, the rest pullets. Our coop is 4'x8' w/a 200 sq ft yard. Would love to hear from someone with experience as to how many I can keep comfortably. I am wanting to keep 12.
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2008
  2. Hangin Wit My Peeps

    Hangin Wit My Peeps

    Apr 20, 2008
    Birnamwood, Wisconsin
    With a coop that size at 3-4 sq foot per bird which is what everyone is recommending you could hold 8 - 10 birds in there. I wouldn't go much over that or your going to have problems with pecking and possibly sick birds over crowding them. In the run they recommend 10 sq foot per bird and that's a minimum for happy birds.
  3. chickenfever

    chickenfever Songster

    Jul 22, 2008
    Thanks for your reply, I have heard various numbers.
  4. jadude

    jadude Songster

    May 22, 2008
    you could comfortably fit 10 in there
  5. spottedtail

    spottedtail Songster

    Aug 5, 2007
    Especially if they will be cooped indoors for the winter.

  6. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    It depends on how much time they have to spend, the size of their run and if they free range sun up to sun down. The guideline is 4sq feet in and 10 sq feet out, but if the run free, you can go less, while if they have to be in, such as mid winter or something, then more space the better. There is never too much space, but too little can cause problems.
  7. chickiebaby

    chickiebaby Songster

    Jan 2, 2008
    western mass
    It's worth saying that we don't all go by four feet per.

    My birds have done absolutely fine at a number that puts them between 2 and 2.5 feet per hen, when cooped, which is night only, with plenty of time in the run and some ranging in the evenings. Coop is well ventilated and open to the air, summer and winter.

    Super-healthy birds, great production, too. No illnesses, no distress-pecking, no evilness or feather pulling, well fed and watered and happy. I should say also that I always have more than one source for food and for water so no one can pull any guarding shenanigans . . .

    and I have seen others on this forum say that they do 1.5 per. Other thoughts?
  8. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    I've gone as low as 2 sq feet per bird but mine free range from when the first person goes to work (7am), till the sun goes down. If they have dozens or hundreds of square feet each to roam during they day, you can get away with ALOT less. If they must be cooped all day, you probably don't want to try it. Everyone will have what works and what doesn't but often it's best to go on the safe side of things. Smaller birds like a 3 lb leghorn or 18 ounce bantie will do better with less space than let's say your 13 lb orpington.
  9. chickenfever

    chickenfever Songster

    Jul 22, 2008
    Thanks for the advise. We live in Arizona. Mostly mild winters. Chickens will only be cooped up at night.
  10. KingsCalls

    KingsCalls Songster

    Oct 22, 2007
    New Market,Tn.
    Quote:I agree Wit 'at.....

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