Is it a coop? Is it a tractor? I don't know, but it works. (pics)

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by utahmethodist, Jul 19, 2008.

  1. utahmethodist

    utahmethodist Songster

    Mar 7, 2008
    SLC, UT
    This contraption is not quite done (it needs wheels and a proper roof) but I had a request to show it so here it is. A little background first: against my husband's wishes I brought home two chicks in March. He thought I'd completely lost my mind and threatened to send me back to my daddy on the farm in Iowa. [​IMG] Yeah, whatevah! I promised him that it was a great idea, the eggs would be fantastic, I'd build the coop myself, I'd clean up the poop, yadda, yadda, yadda. Well, it didn't take long until the fuzzy little chirpers started to melt his icy heart and he began making plans to build a coop. He'd call me from work and tell me he'd been thinking about the chickens and had some great ideas to make them happy in a great coop. Mission accomplished. Assimilation complete. [​IMG]

    We had many discussions about the best type of coop and we decided on an A-frame that would fit in our tiny back yard (approx. 40 x 50'). I wanted it open to the grass and movable so that I could minimize damage to the yard and provide them with a never-ending supply of fresh greens, worms, and bugs. I wanted one nest box and a small roosting area with a slatted bottom so their droppings would just fall through.

    So this is what we ended up making. It's approximately 6 feet tall, 8 feet long, and 3 feet wide. We mostly made it with stuff we had left-over from other projects but we did have to buy some materials so we've put about $180. I think. I kind of stopped keeping track.

    This is the end that has the nest box with the outside access box open. It's just the right height for my kids to look inside. It's accessed by the hens inside by a couple of poles they jump up to. I was worried that it might be too difficult for them to get up to or that it might be too high (so many people recommend putting the nests lower than the roosts) but when the time came my BO knew just where to go and what to do. Clever girl!

    This is the view from the other end, looking in through the access door to the roosting area. Sorry about the poopy's time to hose it out. We live in a dry climate (today it's in the mid-90's with 14% humidity) so the poop completely dries out in less than 24 hours and easily falls down through the slats when I take a whisk broom to it. Then when I move the coop every 2-4 days it's an easy matter of raking up the dry droppings.

    This is the side view. The nest box is on the left and the roosting area is on the right. As you can see we haven't put any roofing material on yet. We bought some house shingles but we're worried it will add too much weight. It's already so darned heavy I can just barely move it by myself. Wheels will help but we've gotten busy this summer and haven't figured that part out yet. Right now we just have some plastic sheeting over the particle board roof to protect it from rain. It hasn't rained here in almost 40 days but, hey, you never know.

    This is just a look inside the side access door. They have a nice little porch. We went with hardware cloth rather than chicken wire since it seemed safer. Oh, plus somebody gave me some for free.

    And here are two of the most spoiled chickens in the world. Matilda is the Australorp and Miss Prissy is the BO. They're both 20 weeks old. They're shown here engaged in one of their favorite activities......tearing up the mulch around the redbud. Our yard is completely fenced with a 6-foot privacy fence so they get to free range whenever there's someone outside to watch and make sure they stay out of the veggies.
  2. wishin4chicken

    wishin4chicken Songster

    Jun 20, 2008
    Hayden Lake, Idaho
    Those look like very happy hens. Congrats on the terrific coop. [​IMG]
  3. Buster

    Buster Back to Work

    Looks great! Thanks for the pics, neighbor!
  4. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast

    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    Good job! Amazing what you can do with a small space.
  5. gachickeeper

    gachickeeper In the Brooder

    May 25, 2008
    Middle GA
    Great looking Coop!! Great job bringing your husband around to the Chicken side. I need those powers for my wife. [​IMG]
  6. WoodlandWoman

    WoodlandWoman Crowing

    May 8, 2007
    That looks great!

    Plastic corrugated roofing material is very light weight and might work for you, if the added weight of shingles is a problem.
  7. Weewanona

    Weewanona Songster

    Apr 1, 2007
    Wilburton, OK
    For your roof; you could use welded wire for security and finish by covering with treated canvas to shed moisture.
  8. spiderman

    spiderman In the Brooder

    Jul 18, 2008
    The Sticks, VT
    Cool coop
  9. steven11788

    steven11788 Songster

    Jun 13, 2008
    hickory Nc
    that really is somthing, i miss when i was a kid, we had some pullets, that did that, more spoiled than a human.. the tried to sleep on the porch, so when night came we had to move them to the hen house
  10. Davaroo

    Davaroo Poultry Crank

    Feb 4, 2007
    Leesville, SC

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