Ideas for Dirt-Floor Coop on Hilly Ground?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by my sunwolf, Nov 25, 2012.

  1. my sunwolf

    my sunwolf Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 22, 2012
    Southwest Virginia
    My Coop
    I'm still working out the details, but this spring I'm going to try to build a huge coop to house my growing chicken obsession. Hoping for 10x30, but might end up with only 10x20 and doing some mobile options... yes, I want that many chickens! There will be attached runs for the flock(s) as well.

    My only concern is that ALL of our land is sloping, and I really want a dirt floor in the coop.

    Any ideas on how to make it sturdy and predator-proof in this situation?

    Reasonable cost would also be nice, but I know that it's not likely...
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    First, I'd suggest you look at 8' wide instead of 10'. Most building materials come in 4' and 8' dimensions. Less cutting and waste too. To get an overhang and slope your roofing materials will be longer than 8' but you have that problem anyway.

    I have no idea how uneven your ground is. I don't know how much work you are willing to put into it or how rocky that ground is. I grew up in the Cumberland Gap area. We have some rocks up there and some of that land is pretty steep.

    Some ideas depending on how steep and rocky it is.

    Step-trench it out around the outside and lay cinder block, brick, or rock walls up to you get it all level, then build on top of that.

    Build it on posts. Set a post maybe every 8' and make the top of those posts level. You can level them either by installing them level or use a saw. Or attach your level bottom beam on the sides of those posts. Wall in beneath the level top. You can use wood, bricks, cinder blocks, maybe you can find enough rocks to use. Just build it on top of those posts.

    If you have access to a bobcat or heavy equipment and don't hit bedrock, try leveling out a place.

    In any case, create a berm or swale along the upper side to divert rainwater away from the coop. And slope your roof of gutter it so rainwater goes away from your coop and run.
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  3. my sunwolf

    my sunwolf Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 22, 2012
    Southwest Virginia
    My Coop
    Thank you, those are excellent start ideas and really useful [​IMG]

    I like the 8ft idea if only because I might be able to find more level ground if it's only 8ft wide.

    Our particular stretch of land isn't pure rock, just clay with some rocks every now and then. Is wind a concern at all if I choose the step-trench method and don't use posts? Our winds aren't the worst, but we do get bad storms every now and then.

    Currently, no heavy equipment for leveling, though thinking of it, extremely sloped ground inside the coop might make the bedding slide away from the upper portion a little too easily. That could be funny. So maybe I'll have to level it in the end anyway?

    And I would have forgotten about making sure water doesn't run into the coop! Would you suggest mounded dirt at the upside entrances?

    Thanks again for your help, I've never built a thing in my life.
  4. Bear Foot Farm

    Bear Foot Farm Overrun With Chickens

    Mar 31, 2008
    Grifton NC
    Quote: You can set anchor bolts in the blocks or concrete to tie down the structure

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