I don't think my hubby knows what he is doing!

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by alaskan_crew, Jun 7, 2007.

  1. alaskan_crew

    alaskan_crew Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 5, 2007
    Wasilla, AK
    Hi there.

    New to chickens. My husband built a little coop for our 3 Golden Comet pullets and inside he made a nesting box. The thing is, this box looks weird compared to pics and descriptions by other members/chicken owners.

    It is about 4 feet off the ground, has a ladder type of stairway up to it and he only made ONE entrance to get into it! He did make a hinged lid so we (I) can get the eggs later. He thinks that this is a good design for the coming winter.

    Does this seem right? BTW, the chickens won't go in it yet or maybe not ever..?

    Thanks for any suggestions!!

    Just for trivia or entertainment.........our part of Alaska received 19 hours,1 minute and 58 seconds of daylight yesterday. Still gaining light too.
  2. Freebie

    Freebie Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 4, 2007
    Bloomingdale, MI
    Man, 19+ hours of daylight. I would never sleep. [​IMG]

    My chickens all use the same nest box. So 3 chickens for one should be fine. I don't know about the rest. All my nest boxes sit on a table or the floor. But they do have a big tree branch to climb instead of a ladder.
  3. justusnak

    justusnak Flock Mistress

    Welcome to BYC Alaskan_crew. Sounds like the nest box might be in a good spot. Considering how cold it can get there in the wintertime, you wont want them on, or near the floor.Do you plan on provideing heat for them in the winter...even a heat lamp? What are the dimensions of your coop?
    How old are your hens? If they are close to laying, or laying...you might grab one of them, and place them IN the nest box....let them get the idea. Also, place a fake egg in there. I use the plastic easter eggs, filled with gravel. ( that way if they break them open, gravel is not harmfull to them) Mine will lay wherever I put a fake egg. I also have a few of the golden comets. GREAT layers. Mine layed all winter as well....however I did provide them with light. That is something you will want to do as well, for the darker months there give them more hours of light.
    Enjoy the fresh brown eggs, when they come!
  4. alaskan_crew

    alaskan_crew Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 5, 2007
    Wasilla, AK
    Thanks for the welcome!

    We are planning to add a light in the winter, would a regular light with a safety guard around it (like the ones that mechanics use ) provide warmth? And would we be able to put it in their box? Fire hazard? Also, how long should we leave it on? We can get as few as 5 or so hours of light in the winter.

    Our pullets were born in early March so I'm gathering that they won't start laying until maybe late July/early Aug.? Should I start the fake egg thing later towards that time frame. Also, would I leave the fake egg in there all the time until they lay on their own?

    Wow..so many questions!! Thanks all for responding!! I also posted a ? in chicken behaviors and didn't get a lot of responses. Just wondering if anyone knows why my pullets are hurting each other?

    I think our coop dimensions are 75 or 100 sq. feet..around there. One more thing...is it ok for the box to be totally enclosed with only one entrance into it?
  5. Royal Oaks Ranch

    Royal Oaks Ranch Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 22, 2007
    Northern Calif
    Quote:Yes that is perfect for hens [​IMG] Mine adore their nest boxes that are built that way... I hang mine from the outside of the coop so that the hens walk into it, lay their egg and go back out.. WhenI want to gather eggs I just walk along side the outside of thepen and lift the lids up to gather eggs [​IMG] Makes it SOOO easy...
  6. Motherhenandflock

    Motherhenandflock Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 17, 2007
    Southeast Idaho
    Hi! If your pullets aren't laying yet, give them time. They will start laying at about 4 and a half to 5 months old. All hens need about 14 hours of light natural or artificial to "make" eggs. You will need to provide light when you days are shorted than that.[​IMG]
  7. usalbrechts

    usalbrechts Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 22, 2007
    south east MI
    Quote:So here is a stupid question from a newbie.....Since your chicks can only get to the nest box when they are outside....does this mean that chicks don't lay eggs after dusk when they are tucked in for the night???
  8. justusnak

    justusnak Flock Mistress

    usalbrechts...I thinks what royaloaks meant...is they protrude out the wall. The entrance is from the hen house...but the "box" sticks through the wall. This idea might not work for our Alaskan friends. Too cold, and too easy for a large predator to get too.

    alaskan_crew.....the mechanics light might work...say with a 100 watt bulb, however, I would NOT put it in the nest box. Too close to the straw, and more of a danger of fire. Your coop is quite large for just 3 hens....I would suggest either make it smaller for the winter, or get MORE HENS! [​IMG] I of course would opt for more hens. That way in the winter they can generate more body heat, and stay warmer. You can hang the light from the roof inside...about 4 ft from the floor. If you have electric in there, you might want to consider hanging a flourescent light to compensate for winter darkness. They are cheap to use..and buy. For the heat, I would use a heat lamp maybe with a red heat bulb, since they are prone to pecking. Both of these you should be able to buy at Wal Mart.
    Where about in Alaska are you? DH and I lived in Anchorage for 6 yrs...I miss it Sooooo much!!
  9. alaskan_crew

    alaskan_crew Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 5, 2007
    Wasilla, AK
    Hi there Deb and everyone else!

    Thanks for the help all!! I'm here in Wasilla. I grew up in Anchorage, then lived in Eagle River before buying out here in Wasilla....still getting used to it out in the Valley. Did you have chickens in Anch?

    Now I'm considering more chickens! I heard that the intro period can be tough for them tho...true? Also, can someone tell me what exactly DH stands for? Kinds new to forums and stuff like that. I'm thinking it either means dumb husband or dear husband or something like that?

    Also, I don't have a run for my chickens, is this bad?
  10. Whirlwind

    Whirlwind Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 14, 2007
    Tuttle, Oklahoma
    Hey you got it, dear Husband or what ever else works with d. Usually that is what every one means. DD, Dear Daughter, DS dear son, and so forth.

    I hope you love your Golden Comet. I love mine. I got them first and they will always be my favs. I didn't have artificial light here and got eggs all winter. Of course I am not in Alaska.

    When you introduce new chickens there is usually an adjustment period. Never had any trouble with the golden comets. But the bantams and Barred Rocks I have are all a bit more grumpy with new comers.

    Not sure about the run since you are in Alaska but mine sure do love it outside.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by