I need pre-fab coop help!

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Jessichick, Oct 1, 2012.

  1. Jessichick

    Jessichick Out Of The Brooder

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    My husband was finally persuaded to allow me to get some chickens. So, for my birthday, he is going to buy me a coop. We just don't have the time to build one right now. I found some nice-looking coops on greengardenchicken.com Does anyone have experience with them? We also don't want to spend a ton of money on a coop. I've seen some nice ones for close to $1,000 but our budget is more like $300. We going to start with just 2-3 hens and we live in Colorado so we need something that will hold up well in snow.
    I looked at the local ranch supply store and they only had a Precision Pet coop (made in China) that looked kinda flimsy.
    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. Sally Sunshine

    Sally Sunshine Cattywampus Angel <straightens Halo> Premium Member

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    My Coop
    May I suggest you call around to local Shed places and ask if they have any used sheds available? you can get big ones dirt cheap and just need a little fixing up for a coop!! just a suggestion, because once u have chickens you will want more LOL Good Luck!!
     
  3. Jessichick

    Jessichick Out Of The Brooder

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    I know it sounds crazy, but I really just want to assemble something and be done. We are doing a major remodel on our house right now and I can't take on any more projects. Coverting or fixing up a shed just sounds time consuming.
     
  4. HiddenChicken

    HiddenChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    We have this one for our 4 hens...
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/products/chicken-coop-portable-for-3-to-5-hens

    Works great & it's mobile, so we can move it around in the summer, all over the yard. In the winter, we park it under our deck & put it over a pit we dug (4x4 ft, same size as coop footprint). We filled the pit with sand & we put straw on top. We put a small strip light inside...and I hung home made curtains in front of the nest box...they looove the privacy.

    We had to make a couple modifications to it to make it really weather resistant & predator proof... We put a couple coats or Thompsons Water Seal on all the outside surfaces before we assembled it. We also put some chicken wire over the three vent holes on the end, as the holes are too big to leave open right next to where the chickens are roosting. Something could reach in (raccoon!) and behead them! Ack! :( We also modified the ramp cord that you pull to close the ramp at night. We removed the nylon rope (chew-through-able) & replaced it with a plastic wrapped steel cord from Lowes.

    One last thing... If you are not careful when you move the coop (we lifted it but forgot to close the ramp first--duh), the ramp can tear off the hinges. Ours did & I had to fix it. Be careful & that shouldn't be a problem for you!

    We're at MAX in this coop with 4 birds, but we free range and they only spend the nights in the coop...& they seem to love it. ;-)

    Let me know if you have any questions!

    (edited for spelling errors! :rolleyes:)
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2012
  5. Jessichick

    Jessichick Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank you. I did look at this one. What do you do about a nesting box?
     
  6. Darkjeweler

    Darkjeweler Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Around here there are numerous Shed-Depot like places. Most of these shed stores also have numerous pre-built chicken coops they can make. Price seems to start at about $400 and go up. See if you have something like that in your area (google search)

    Mike-
     
  7. HiddenChicken

    HiddenChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    About 1/3 of the upper part is a nesting box... The other 2/3 of it is for the roost bar. It has a divider with a large round hole in it for them to get from the roost to the box. I line the roost with pine shavings, and I line the nest part with straw and put a fake ceramic egg in it. So far, all have laid right in their box!;)
     
  8. HiddenChicken

    HiddenChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Look at picture number 4 on the coop description page. I hung green plaid curtains in front of the round hole (stapled to the wood) & it serves as privacy & as a nice divider for the box from the roost.

    Edited for spelling...ugh
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2012
  9. wsmoak

    wsmoak Chillin' With My Peeps

    I'd probably go with something that can be re-purposed or sold later -- a large dog house possibly? If you can find one with a roof that lifts up (to get the eggs) and add a door you can close, it should get you through the winter.

    How is the local construction industry? Maybe an ad on Craigslist would turn up someone who could build something for you within your budget.

    Look at Heritage Ways Farm (on Facebook) for an interesting design. The 6x10 has about $500 in materials, for comparison. http://www.facebook.com/Heritage.Ways.Farm/photos_albums

    -Wendy
     
  10. ChickensRDinos

    ChickensRDinos Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If you are going to buy prefab I would buy larger than you think unless you plan on free ranging or having an additional run. The numbers of chickens they list always seems a little too tight to me. Also, take note of any predators in your area. All of the coops I am seeing on the site you mentioned are bottomless, so be aware that predators can dig under and small chickens can dig out. My bantum cochin digs and squeezes herself though tiny holes.
     

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