Interior design

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by EvansFlock, Jan 27, 2017.

  1. EvansFlock

    EvansFlock New Egg

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    Jan 27, 2017
    We are just about to start a flock of our own. It's getting close to start the build for the coop, but I'm having a hard time getting a vision for the inside. Can I get some pics? Perch placement is my biggest concern, and the best way to install them.

    Thanks everybody
     
  2. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Welcome to BYC!


    Have you looked thru the Coop Design pages?
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/atype/2/Coops

    Knowing what your design is so far would help.

    Here's some notes I have.
    Here's my theory on the 'stack up' aspect to coop design:
    Bottom of pop door is best about 8" above floor so bedding doesn't get dragged out of coop.
    Nice to have bottom of nests about 18" above bedding to allow use of that floor space under them(doesn't count if your nests are mounted on outside of coop).
    Roosts are best about 12" higher than nests so birds won't roost(sleep) in nests and poop in them, if you use poop boards under roosts it will also 'stretch' your floor space. Roosts are best at least 12" away from walls.
    Upper venting works best as high as possible above roosts so no strong drafts hit roosts in winter...and hot/moist air and ammonia can rise and exit coop.
     
  3. EvansFlock

    EvansFlock New Egg

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    Jan 27, 2017
    Thank you
    I've tried looking through some pictures but none I've seen really show the inside.
    I don't have much of a design yet but I know she wants the nest boxes to have outside access.
    Are the roosts just sticks run across the coop?
     
  4. EvansFlock

    EvansFlock New Egg

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    Jan 27, 2017
    Okay so I wasn't looking in the right places for pictures. Thanks for the link
     
  5. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    You will find that there are all kinds of different ways to lay out a coop and all sizes of coops. A little information on what you are planning can help a lot. How many chickens? How big a coop? Walk-in or elevated? What breeds? If you have Silkies, Silkies can’t fly so that changes things. What is your climate? Some goals can make a difference too. If you plan to have a broody hen hatch and raise chicks with the flock I’d go differently than if you just have a few hens for laying eggs.

    I like Aart’s method of determining coop height.

    I don’t know if it will do you any good, but here’s how I installed my roosts. I drilled a hole through the limb and support to hold the limb in place and put a large nail through that so the roost can easily be removed. There are all kinds of other ways. What do you plan to use as roosts?

    [​IMG]

    This shot shows my main roosts. I brood chicks in the coop so I built my brooder in there and use the top as a droppings board.

    [​IMG]

    This one shows my nests. I put a “juvenile” roost over them and use the tops of these as a droppings board. I found this juvenile roost to really help as I am integrating all the time.

    [​IMG]

    There are just all kinds of different layouts, vertical and horizontal, that can work. A lot depends on how you are using the coop. If you feed and water inside, not everyone does, you need to make sure they can’t poop in there from the roosts. I personally like a droppings board to collect the poop for my compost and to help reduce how often I have to clean the bedding out of the coop. Some people do totally different things or maybe the same things but for different reasons.
     
  6. EvansFlock

    EvansFlock New Egg

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    Jan 27, 2017
    We were thinking ofor only about 5 or 6 hens, strictly for laying. Not 100% sure of breed yet. We've planned on a 4x6 coop. We'd like to have the best boxes attached to the outside for easy access. I like the idea of using branches as roosts instead of 2x4s. Are roosts near/in front of the nest boxes a bad idea? Try and keep the poop away from the nest, right?
     
  7. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    It sounds like you are talking about a small elevated coop. I don’t have one of those so I hope people with one see this and tell you how they laid theirs out.

    You do not want the chickens pooping in your nests, feeders, or waterers from the roosts. That can be a challenge in a small coop. With mine the nests extend out into the coop with the juvenile roost over it. The way it is aligned the chickens cannot poop inside the nests from the roosts but as you can see they are pretty dirty. That doesn’t bother the chickens but it would some people. I have good access to clean them off, that’s on my agenda to do today.

    With your nests hung off the side of your coop, that opening will probably be flush with the inside wall. I don’t know if the chickens will poop in that from the roosts or not. Probably not but I haven’t tried it. But if the bottom of those openings are too low, the chickens can scratch stuff from the floor of the coop into the nest. That stuff could include poop. So raise the openings into the nests a few inches above the top of any bedding you use. With five or six hens I’d suggest two nests. You might get by with one fairly large one but two would probably be better, especially if you go with the minimum recommended size of 12” x 12”. Mine are 16” x 16”, mainly because that was my stud spacing so framing them was easy. Even if you make them bigger, I still suggest two nests.

    You’ll find all kinds of recommendations through this forum for how much roost length you need. Some will say 7” per chicken, some will say 15” with all numbers in between getting votes. For five chickens I think you will be OK with one 4’ long roost. For six chickens you might be Ok with one 4’ roost, you might not. If you put one roost the 6’ length where do you put food and water? There are a lot of variables involved, including the individual personalities of your chickens. If you fool with them much you’ll find that each chicken has its own personality. That makes it a little harder to determine exactly what you need when you go small or tight. There is some trial and error involved.
     
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  8. EvansFlock

    EvansFlock New Egg

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    Jan 27, 2017
    So 1 nest per hen isn't a requirement? What is a goid ratio? What happens if there are more nests then necessary?
     
  9. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

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    A general suggested ratio is 1 nest box per 3-4 layers. It seems regardless of human efforts, chickens have other ideas, and they will most likely prefer to queue for selected nest boxes, and ignore others. I use plastic basins for nest boxes, so i can swap and change things around, depending on observed preferences (my coop is a former garden shed, so i have lots of space to play with).
     
  10. EvansFlock

    EvansFlock New Egg

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    Jan 27, 2017
    So for the run, can you clip wings to keep them flying high enough to get over a fence? Or is fully enclosed the only way to go?
     

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