Hi! I've tried to read as much as I can absorb before my first post, and I'm sure you all get tired of this question in all its various forms, but here goes: I'm inching my way closer to getting a few hens for our backyard, and I'm trying to approach it cautiously to avoid any disasters. The area I have to devote to a coop and run is about 18'x4' , and it's against the east wall of our backyard. Not up to municipal code but I'm going to try to get away with it - none of my neighbors seem too concerned about legality. I'm thinking of a coop around 5'x4', elevated, so the entire space would also be the run (the area under the coop should provide some extra shade in summer). I'm thinking of 3-5 hens max. Does this sound adequate? They'll have to stay in this space most of the time, since our two dogs are serious hunters, and I can't afford to have any escapes into neighboring yards. Question 2: I just came across a site referencing a Dr. Woods who wrote a book in the 20's about open-front coops - anybody using this plan? I like the idea, since summers here are pretty hot and winters pretty mild (we live in Pasadena CA). Sorry to go on and on . . . just trying to get all my chicks in a row, so to speak. Thanks for any input.