I start framing the coop tomorrow morning...

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Buckhowdy, Nov 6, 2014.

  1. Buckhowdy

    Buckhowdy Chirping

    Sep 14, 2014
    I have a few basic coop layout questions that I need to resolve before I start framing the coop tomorrow morning.

    1.) Can the pop door be near the nest boxes? or under the roosts?
    2.) I was considering large vents with doors on hinges. Should the vents be up high, in the middle, or down low?
    3.) A county animal control officer said that I'm allowed to have 22 chickens. Will 6 (16" X 16") nest boxes be enough for 22?
    4.) Should the people door be accessed from inside or outside the run?
    5.) I picked up 4 optimax 18" X 24" window panels. Should I avoid putting them on the West wall because of the summer heat and North wall because of the heat loss in the winter?

    Any sage advice will be greatly appreciated. Once I start framing its pretty much a done deal.

    Last edited: Nov 6, 2014
  2. Judy

    Judy Crowing

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    I don't think you want the pop door under a roost where they can get pooped on if someone is up there at the time. Mine get on the roost for short periods all day.

    Vents need to be up high, and positioned so they cause no draft on the roof. The air will exchange both in and out at one vent. Figure one sq ft of vent per bird. If you slant the roof only one way, toward one wall, just put it at the high end of the coop; makes construction simple. Then the roost can go on the opposite side and be well out of the way of drafts.

    Six nests is fine. Five would be fine, too.

    Mine is outside the run and I wouldn't want it inside, even though there are moments I would use one inside. Actually, if in a real hurry, I can get through the pop door.

    Glass windows on the north side should help warm the coop a bit. In the summer, you will want lots of cross ventilation. (A winter draft becomes a welcome breeze in summer.) Remember that they can die in summer heat but tolerate temps well below zero with only good ventilation.
  3. Buckhowdy

    Buckhowdy Chirping

    Sep 14, 2014
    Thanks for the advice on ventilation. I'm thinking about building a 4' X 4' cupola on the top with two vents on each side. That should handle a lot of birds with no crosswinds or drafts down low. I'll have 4 Plexiglas windows (18 x 24) behind hardware cloth. I'll remove the Plexiglas in the summer to cool down the coop. It was either under the roost or near the nests so I chose to put the pop door (12x14) near the nests. I'll build exterior boxes on the right side where I framed the wall 16" on center. There will be one nest between each pair of studs on the wall. I'd sure like to get my pullets out of the garage. They are going on 6 weeks old and I've got dust on everything in there!

  4. thomasboyle

    thomasboyle Songster

    Feb 28, 2013
    Northwest Hills of CT
    Love the foundation you have, looks like a very safe place for chickens, protected by those walls. I have working windows on my coop, and this allows me to add or reduce ventilation as needed. In the summer, the windows are wide open, in the winter, they are open 25% or so. I have a thermometer in the coop so I can monitor the temperature and humidity and adjust as needed. If you do have working windows, make sure you cover them with 1/2" hardware wire so nothing can get in. I get my windows from Craigslist. People often give them away as they replace them on their home.

    I have a door into the coop, and another door into the run, both accessible from the outside. Any door should be properly secured, as animals like raccoons can open many type of latches.

    Keep the pics coming, will be interested to see the finished coop. Looking great!
  5. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Oops, too late!

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