Making a bigger chicken coop

LoribelleF

Chirping
Sep 1, 2019
63
93
76
Ligonier, Pa
That looks like a chicken tractor with a permanent run? You might want to enclose the whole thing into two separate living areas (by whole thing I mean the area covered with the roof. Then you can create a large run (or two) by using welded wire fencing and pounding some stakes/pipes into the ground. Run avian netting over the top.

The fencing part goes quick but you have to decide if it makes sense to build out the rest of that tractor or just get/build a separate hen house.

As your flock grows you will want a separate area/run for hens with chicks, a second rooster or whatever.
I agree with Ridgerunner and Sonya9. The part with a roof....wall it all in to make a 4x8 fully walled structure, take out the existing floor and inside wall, move the nest boxes and put a ramp on that end into the run. Easy peasy a coop with roof big enough.
Thank you. This makes more sense to me know. Sometimes ya gotta hit me in the head, lol. Our winter can be cold in PA so I may look into insulation of some sort to keep them warm/cool. Their run is brand new so plantings and perches are just now going in for them.
I appreciate everyone's help with this.
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium Feather Member
7 Years
Nov 27, 2012
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My Coop
Our winter can be cold in PA so I may look into insulation of some sort to keep them warm/cool.
You don't need insulation you need ventilation!
That roof overhang is big enough you could do eave venting.

Your run may not hold up to snow load tho.
Are those hoops made of metal or PVC.....with some kind of netting??
 

Sonya9

Crowing
6 Years
Feb 7, 2014
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Georgia
If you plan to build out the existing structure another thing you can do is just remove the "front" of the existing hen house and put new roost bars in.

Leave the floor in place and use it as a "poop shelf" under the roosts. After the whole thing is closed in the space under the old floor/new poop shelf is perfect for a second isolation area inside the hen house especially if you cut a chicken door in the side with a separate run. That really maximizes the space in a coop that size.

Does that make sense? That is how my 4x8 coop is set up. See old photo below, the area under the roosts with the shelf is a separate for hens w/chicks or roosters now with its own chicken door and large run. It also has a 4x8 covered patio area outside that door.

I live in a mild climate (Georgia) so the covered outdoor area is used for rain or shade, but in your area with heavy snow loads it would be even more important to give them snow free areas outside to walk around in.

1596584946134.png
 

LoribelleF

Chirping
Sep 1, 2019
63
93
76
Ligonier, Pa
You don't need insulation you need ventilation!
That roof overhang is big enough you could do eave venting.

Your run may not hold up to snow load tho.
Are those hoops made of metal or PVC.....with some kind of netting??
The eaves have venting. The hoops are pvc. and covered with bird netting to protect against hawk attacks. We have those a lot around here. The bottom of the hoops has 2 layers of chicken wire 1 inside and 1 outside the run. The one outside is secured with a board to the base.
And I didn't think of a snow load until 5 minutes ago when I was reading farmers almanac. 5/6 hoops will be closed off to them for plantings to go in so they have fresh grass in spring. I am going to have rethink their run now for winter..geez. opened that can of worms and didnt even see it.
Do you think 16ft. Is enough space for 5 of them to comfortably be? I can add perches, they have stumps. Anything else? Or would it be better to make a little bigger with a run extension?
 

LoribelleF

Chirping
Sep 1, 2019
63
93
76
Ligonier, Pa
If you plan to build out the existing structure another thing you can do is just remove the "front" of the existing hen house and put new roost bars in.

Leave the floor in place and use it as a "poop shelf" under the roosts. After the whole thing is closed in the space under the old floor/new poop shelf is perfect for a second isolation area inside the hen house especially if you cut a chicken door in the side with a separate run. That really maximizes the space in a coop that size.

Does that make sense? That is how my 4x8 coop is set up. See old photo below, the area under the roosts with the shelf is a separate for hens w/chicks or roosters now with its own chicken door and large run. It also has a 4x8 covered patio area outside that door.

I live in a mild climate (Georgia) so the covered outdoor area is used for rain or shade, but in your area with heavy snow loads it would be even more important to give them snow free areas outside to walk around in.

View attachment 2276683
Thanks for the picture. It helps. Where is your egg box?
 

LoribelleF

Chirping
Sep 1, 2019
63
93
76
Ligonier, Pa
No photos, I don't have anything like that. On that 8' x 4' section put plywood everywhere you have wire. Remember to provide ventilation and a door you can walk in.
Iove these ideas and you guys are really smart but my husband brought up a point I didn't think of. Removing the interior and making everything open doesn't increase space. We are going to cover the exterior with plywood and create windows, move the egg box so i can get to it easier and most likely add a poop shelf (i read on here they are very helpful with cleaning), my shredded pine chips are being replaced with construction sand (another post I read on this site) but the issue still stands, space for 5 hens. 8feet is 8feet. No matter if its open or not. The only one bumping their head is me, 😉.
So can someone please tell me how removing the interior wall and interior floor will make more room? I'm confused at this point and before I start tearing it apart I want to be sure.
Thank you so much for your help.
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium Feather Member
7 Years
Nov 27, 2012
84,413
97,970
1,677
SW Michigan
My Coop
So can someone please tell me how removing the interior wall and interior floor will make more room?
You are basically making the whole coop/run combo into a coop,
by removing interior existing wall and adding walls to the rest of the framework(where the mesh is now).
Does that help?
 

LoribelleF

Chirping
Sep 1, 2019
63
93
76
Ligonier, Pa
You are basically making the whole coop/run combo into a coop,
by removing interior existing wall and adding walls to the rest of the framework(where the mesh is now).
Does that help?
Told ya, hit me in the head. I always called my roofed unit "My chicken coop". I see now it is being separated into a run/coop combo unit. Yes it does make more sense, lol. Oh goodness, you must think I'm as smart as my chickens.
Thank you you for your patience and explanation. Guess I've got a trip to the hardware store iny near future.
 

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