Minimum space required for 3 hens

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Markp1964, Feb 1, 2009.

  1. Markp1964

    Markp1964 Out Of The Brooder

    Sep 4, 2007
    I am thinking about a very small hen house with attached run. I am planning this to look alot like a tractor and work the same way, staying ontop of the vegetable patch over the winter and moving around the backyard in good weather.
    The run will be 3 feet by 8 feet, and the max occupancy will be 3 birds.
    My question is how large a house will those three birds need? I'm aiming at something that in size and shape looks like a dooghouse, say 3 by 2 or so. If a neighbor peeking over the fence gets a look at it, I'd like it to look like a rabbit hutch.
    I have seen the postings here about dog houses as coops and have been inspired.
  2. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    First, what climate are you in. If you're somewhere that's really nice all year round, you have a bigger margin of error for squishin' em in than if you are somewhere that gets long stretches of nasty weather when the chickens may chiefly want to stay indoors.

    A 3x8 run is already a bit on the small side IMO, so unless you are in, you know, like Hawaii I would not get too chintzy with the coop. Personally I would go at LEAST 3x4 or the equivalent.

    What about putting the coop on top of the run so that it does not use up any extra footprint? You could still make it look doghousey or rabbithutchy that way.

    You know that your neighbors are likely to figure out that you have chickens, right, even if they do not see them? On account of even quiet chickens do make chicken noises?

    GOod luck, have fun,

  3. jforsness

    jforsness Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 28, 2008
    Seattle, WA

    Here's a pic of the 3 B's crib whilst it was being built. It sounds like you want to do something like this, a small hen house incorporated over the run. As you can see, the 'crib' is floating over the run, the food and waterer are now suspended so that they stay clean. Good luck and get creative - it's just a custom box afterall [​IMG]
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2009
  4. ssteiner

    ssteiner Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 24, 2008
    Orange, CA
    I have four girls who live in a small rabbit hutch style coop I built myself. It's on cinderblocks, it's four feet wide, by two feet deep, by two feet high. It has a slanted, hinged roof to deal with rain and allow access. The front is half hardware cloth (we live in Southern California so weather's not an issue) and I have a 7 foot long run attached to the coop that the girls spend most of the day relaxing in. Everyone's very happy.

  5. B. Saffles Farms

    B. Saffles Farms Mr. Yappy Chickenizer

    Nov 23, 2008
    Madisonville, TN
    3x3 will give them 3 sq ft per bird, which will be fine in a fairly warm climate, if they dont spend alot of time in the coop. I think you will be fine on the run size. [​IMG]

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by