I need some ideas on where to get started

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Luke, Jan 17, 2009.

  1. Luke

    Luke New Egg

    Jan 17, 2009
    I am interested in getting 6 chickens, and I have a shed that is ideal for a coup. It has 2 big doors that can be opened easily, and no windows or ventilation other than that. I can put some electrical outlets in to provide heat and electricity, and I am wondering what else I'm going to need to do to this shed to make it a coup fit for chickens.

    I have about a 1.5 acre back yard, enclosed by about a 4 foot high fence, although there are coyotes that roam around in the forest behind me, and I want the chickens to be able to roam around an area outside of the shed during the day without the danger of Coyotes.

    If someone would please tell me what I need to do to alter this shed and make it a coup ideal for 6 chickens, that would be a big help.

  2. tackyrama

    tackyrama Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 14, 2008
    Central Minnesota USA
    Hello! welcome to BYC!
    First, what kind of floor is it. You will have ro make it critter proof as best you can. A cement floor is ideal. Next you should have a window or two. If it is a tin shed you will definitly need ventilation for both winter and summer. In the summer to keep it from getting too hot. In the winter to keep it from getting too high humudity. Depending where you live insulation is an option.

    I don't think 4' high fence will be high enough to keep them in or the coyotes out. If you plan on free ranging them like I do with mine you can expect some losses. If you absolutely cannot bear any losses make a run for them and then hope for the best.

    There are threads on this site with information about nest boxes, roosts etc.
  3. redoak

    redoak Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 27, 2008
    Russia, NY
    If you get a heavy breed of chicken they probably won't fly over your fence. My buff orpingtons fly like rocks and don't go over my 4 foot fence.

    You'll need 2 nest boxes with 6 chickens and 6 feet of roost. A 2x4 with the wide side up makes a good roost for chickens.
  4. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    Coyotes here in AZ jump 6' tall fences with ease.

    Could you put in some windows or a skylight?

    You'll need nest boxes and some roosts and you are good to go.
  5. chookchick

    chookchick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 18, 2008
    Olympia WA
    If you could post some pics of inside and outside of the shed, I am sure you will get lots of opinions! It is kind of hard to visualize and help without photos.
  6. digitS'

    digitS' Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 12, 2007
    ID/WA border
    Welcome to BYC, Luke [​IMG]!!

    I have double doors on my small coop. I take one off during the warmer weather and replace it with a screen. Other than the chicken door (pop door), that's the ventilation.

    During the Winter, the pop door is open any day the temps are a little above zero. I can tighten up the latch on the double doors to make it good and tight or loosen the latch. That's the extent of ventilation thru the cold months.

    You don't need much room for 6 chickens. Some folks use a rule of thumb of 4 square feet per chicken, so that's 24 square feet. If your shed is larger than that, you could build an inside fence back from those double doors.

    With a fence and gate, your shed would be divided into a chicken and a non-chicken area, for feed storage and such. You would also be able to open the doors and provide lots of ventilation without the birds making an escape.

  7. cmom

    cmom Hilltop Farm

    Nov 18, 2007
    My Coop
    [​IMG] If you are planning a small flock of no more than maybe a half dozen or less birds,you can get some good ideas on how to modify your shed for your flock. Check out the BYC coop pages. You can get a lot of wonderful ideas, Here are some additional suggested resources.

    Here is a great reference book, Gail Damerow's 'Storey's Guide to Chickens' is an excellent guide, as well as this web site. This site is an excellent source of information.

    Also here are some other good sites and info.
    Henderson's Chicken Breed Chart
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2009

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