Ideal space considerations??

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by ThornyRidge, Jan 15, 2010.

  1. ThornyRidge

    ThornyRidge Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 28, 2008
    I am wondering everyone's thoughts on ideal space considerations both for coop/nest boxes and fenced in areas for chickens.. Currently I have a mixed (large breed and bantam) flock of around 20 birds split between two coops sharing one fenced in area.. the larger of the coops is a 6X8 barn with 4 nest boxes and 6 feet of roosts.. ironically only 4 hens and a rooster decide to stay in this coop. The other coop is approximately 3X 5 give or take as it has large boxes (not nest boxes) that give more space it also has 3 roosting areas with approx. 3 roosts that are approx 3 feet long. Now all the remaining birds cram into this coop.. why I don't know.. my fenced in area is odd shaped but would guess it in neighborhood of 18X15 maybe a bit more... when the weather is nice and there is not a foot of snow on the ground the back doors of coops open up and chickens are able to roam the woods which consists of approximately 2 acres in their coop vicinity..

    I see these premade coops in magazines and they look small to me and say they hold so many large birds and so many bantams.. I would like to condense my birds and make sure I have enough space.. and not run into health problems in long run.. some day I would like to add to my flock as many of my birds are getting older ( I have two hens that are over 8 years old) and I have way too many roosters!!!
     
  2. jenjscott

    jenjscott Mosquito Beach Poultry

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    The general consensus is 4 sq ft of coop per Large fowl, not counting unusable floor space (due to nest boxes, etc) 10 sq ft of run space per large fowl. The 4 might be a little small if they have to spend an extended amount of time inside, and can be less if there are a lot of banties. The 10 sq feet really isn't very much, but if they get out to free range, it is plenty.
     
  3. ThornyRidge

    ThornyRidge Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 28, 2008
    I don't typically confine them unless there would be a reason I know they would not come outside.. like the over one foot of snow we got a couple weeks ago.. or if temperatures are extremely cold and blustery.. other than that chickens always have access to their fenced in area.. and when nice they get to roam the wooded area outside of their coop and pen. I notice my chickens tend to prefer roosting as opposed to diggin/moving around much inside when they are cooped up. it seems that they get most enjoyment and exercise when weather is nice and they are out scratchin in woods..
     
  4. jenjscott

    jenjscott Mosquito Beach Poultry

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    May 24, 2008
    Southeast Arkansas
    By the way, I forgot to mention, they should have one nest box for every four birds plus one. I don't know why, because they all want to use the same one, but that is what "they" say.
     
  5. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    When you say "condense your flock," do you simply mean add to your flock? Or are you talking about getting rid of some roosters and hens and then adding? Your run space is fine, but you're already tight on coop space (depending on how many of your birds are bantums), so I would consider reducing your current numbers before adding...
     

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