I Have a Small Coop with Ventilation Low on the Walls, Any Advice? (Questions on Ventilation and Dee

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Calix, Jan 17, 2014.

  1. Calix

    Calix Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 7, 2012
    So I got a used coop for Christmas. It's 4x4 and seems to be pretty well made; it's off the ground and quite sturdy, with two nest boxes, a roost, a window for light, two large ventilation holes (slits really, directly across from each other so there's a cross draft) that can be opened and closed at will, and an inclosed run with a wire roof (I'll try to get some pictures up soon). Really my only problem is that, since the walls are so short, the ventilation is very low (if it was higher drafts would blow directly on the roost, which would be bad.)
    How will the low ventilation affect the chickens when its very hot or cold? Is this good or bad for the build up of ammonia and such? What about moisture? It gets very cold here in the winter (I live in northern Ohio) and I'm worried about frostbite.
    Also, I'm wondering about the deep-litter method... can it work in a small (4x4) coop? How high does the litter get? If I can't leave it for more than a few months, or less than that even, will it still work the same, or should I just plan on regularly changing the bedding?


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    The little panel you can see on the side is one of the ventilation slits.
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    The inside ^
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    The left side: the wire is where the ventilation slit is. The box you can see to the left is one of the nest boxes.
    [​IMG]

    Right side.
     
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2014
  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    The cross ventilation isn't a bad thing, especially down low. The cross ventilation would probably alleviate the ammonia. That said, in any structure with any heat source (like chickens) there needs to be an opening at the very top. Warm air will rise. If there isn't an escape for that rising air at the top, humidity from chicken respiration and feces evaporation will pool there. A good source of frostbite. I'd add gable vents or ridge vents. I like ridge vents but they are pretty useless when covered with a foot of snow.
    Deep litter will work in any size building. Its efficacy and how long you can go between replacing it depends on stocking density.
    A 4X4 coop can hold 4 chickens. How many are you planning on having?
     
  3. Calix

    Calix Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 7, 2012
    Posted pictures.
     
  4. Beekissed

    Beekissed True BYC Addict

    Right above that little door I'd open a big ol' hole and cover it with wire~then I'd open up those lower vents about 2 in each for good intake and let the upper vent pull out the bad air. Cross ventilation doesn't work like that unless those are open and it's summer and there is a breeze..and even then it will need an upper vent to draw out the hot air...in the winter warm air and humidity rises and needs a place to escape as well.

    I wouldn't try any kind of deep litter in a coop that small and I wouldn't have more than 2 chickens in it, max.
     

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