Michigan coop design-pref tractor needed!

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by embrown, Apr 18, 2009.

  1. embrown

    embrown Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 18, 2009
    Hi there,
    Have browsed a bunch, but have not decided yet on which coop to attempt, we live in Michigan, so have up to 90's in summer, and below zero sometimes in winter. We are in a town, so size of coop and run and appearence are definitely considerations. A tractor would be good, as there is only one spot in our yard that is actually within ordinance, but would like to eventually move it around a bit.

    Bottom line is that our 6 chicks are 4 weeks old (3 ISA Browns, and 3 Barred Rocks, and I need to get started on this project. Any tips would be welcome. As well as overall design, poop management is an issue. a mesh floor won't work too well, and would like to collect for fertilizer...

    might be one of those too many choices to make a decision kind of issues.

    Thanks,
    Dave and Beth
     
  2. CoopCrazy

    CoopCrazy Brooder Boss

    Mar 3, 2009
    Columbus,IN
    Have you looked in the coop designs for tractors? I agree about not having awire bottom.. I just don't see how you could keep the wind out.. Try doing a search in the blue box above for tractors or chicken tractors ... I'm sure you will find lots
     
  3. CoopCrazy

    CoopCrazy Brooder Boss

    Mar 3, 2009
    Columbus,IN
    Oh and BTW [​IMG]
     
  4. waibel zoo

    waibel zoo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 23, 2009
    Sandy, UT
    I really likt the Catawba ConvertiCoop. You can buy the plans here http://www.catawbacoops.com/ I changed a few things though. We painted it, didn't bother with the pulley system and I put a weather vane on top.
     
  5. Omran

    Omran Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 26, 2008
    Bagdad KY
    First [​IMG] [​IMG]
    I really think that you need a minimum of 24 sq feet for the birds to live in, and are your birds going to be free ranged any or not?
    If not then your tractor will be moved a lot then they won't distroy your grass.
    I never build a tractor coop, because I live in the boom dogs and there is plenty space for them to play on, but I think on the chicen coop section I have seen very beautiful tractors and very practical ideas I will copy if I decide to build a tractor.
    good luck

    and I am sorry I am no help.

    Omran
     
  6. CityChook

    CityChook Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 9, 2008
    Minneapolis, MN
    My Coop
    Just mentioning this as we had a really long cold winter... thank goodness it's over now....

    Definitely check out the design pages and then do some searches in the coop forum. There are so many nice coops to look at.

    You might want to reconsider the tractor idea with 6 chickens. Don't know what part of Michigan you're in... but depending on your chickens, they may or may not want to go outside when it's snowing/cold. Mine were princesses and wouldn't go out, even tho their run was covered and the door was open every day. Soooo, it was good that they had enough room inside to get away from each other. I think that if you built a tractor that would be big enough to house 6 chickens, it might get awfully heavy and hard to move around. It's also a little more challenging to keep it well ventilated and clean. If space is an issue, maybe a larger playhouse style would work well for you.

    Just trying to give you a little food for thought...
     
  7. embrown

    embrown Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 18, 2009
    Hi all,
    thanks for the replies. I checked out that link to Catabwacoops (not spelled right, but you know what I mean) very cool, and I could build it quick, but sounds like it would not be warm enough. re the playhouse idea, that would be ideal, but could be trouble in case the one neighbor grumbles... I did find an A frame tractor I think will work on the site, but have not managed to get a list of materials from the person who has it. It also may not have a great enough "looks" factor, but what can you do? This is the one I thought had the greatest potential in the tractors: https://www.backyardchickens.com/web/viewblog.php?id=8671
     
  8. kristenm1975

    kristenm1975 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 23, 2008
    Seattle, WA
    waibel zoo, I'm with you on the Catawba Converticoop. I build them for a living and have found the design to be pretty darn cool. I too have thought about and implemented a couple of little modifications, but overall, I think this is a good choice for most climates. If a person is really worried about the cold, I've seen a youtube video of one of these style coops in upstate NY with LOTS of snow, and the people just placed a heavy clear shower curtain over the whole thing but not on the ends, so there would be ventilation but the snow wouldn't just blow on it. The chickens looked happy and were still laying.
     
  9. Chickenmaven

    Chickenmaven Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 6, 2009
    Michigan
    Whatever you build, I would suggest that you think of access to electricity. I am in MI, also, and used a heat lamp during that week of -10F weather.
     
  10. kristenm1975

    kristenm1975 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 23, 2008
    Seattle, WA
    Just found the link to the youtube video showing the chicken tractor in the snow in NY and thought I'd share.

     

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