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My first coop

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by gggeek, Oct 11, 2014.

  1. gggeek

    gggeek Out Of The Brooder

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    We picked up our first 4, 9-week old hens today.
    Below is my coop.

    It is 4'x8' and 6' tall in the center.
    [​IMG]
    On this side you can see the door to the next boxes and then the entire lower half flips down to allow full access to inside the coop.
    [​IMG]

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    In the picture below you can see that the front half of the front half flips open and the front gate comes out completely allowing access into the run.
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2014
    1 person likes this.
  2. iwiw60

    iwiw60 Overrun With Chickens

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    You have six hens in a 4' x 4' coop...the overall size is 4' x 8' if I understand correctly? Depending on the breed of chickens you have that is going to be extremely tight quarters. Chickens in the coop require a minimum of 3-4 sq.ft. and in the run require a minimum of 4-6 sq.ft. to alleviate squabbles.

    Your actual coop has a total of 16 sq.ft. which would translate to 4 birds maximum. Your next boxes are inside the coop rather than an exterior nest box setup which adds to the loss of square footage. How are your roost bar(s) set up in there? Please don't think I'm picking your coop and run apart, I just would hate for you to encounter problems right off the bat, and some changes will help with that. Apologies if I sound that way....wishing you all the best! [​IMG]
     
  3. sunflour

    sunflour Flock Master Premium Member

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    Sorry, but I agree your coop is too small. For us first time chicken owners it is quite the learning experience. You will be shocked at how big those chickens get. Imagine each will be about the size of a 5 gallon bucket and feeder and water founts take up a lot of livable space. I built "by the book" with what is described as appropriate square footage, but by the time my 6 were starting to lay the area really was not enough and had to more than double their space.

    I also think you're gonna have a difficult time keeping the coop clean? 6 full grown chickens make a lot of poop. And wonder if there's enough ventilation?

    Look at how you may expand the structure you have ….it's a lot easier to remodel now than when they are older and you see the problems arise.
     
    1 person likes this.
  4. Ol Grey Mare

    Ol Grey Mare One egg shy of a full carton. ..... Premium Member

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    My Coop
    Great little setup and good job on the build - but it is, unfortunately, a bit small for the number of birds you have. The good news is, you are clearly very capable of building a great home for chickens, so you can either add a second setup or remodel this first one to expand it a bit.
     
    1 person likes this.
  5. gggeek

    gggeek Out Of The Brooder

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    Definitely understand where you are coming from. There is only 4 hens. The "6-8" was the age in weeks, though I've confirmed they are actually 9 weeks old.
    Roost set up has one going each direction in the coop (7 total feet of roost space).

    Breeds are (2x Speckled Sussex, 1x RIR, 1x Salmon Favoralle).
     
  6. sunflour

    sunflour Flock Master Premium Member

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    Sorry for misunderstanding. [​IMG] It's an attractive coop and sounds like plenty of roost space.
     
  7. iwiw60

    iwiw60 Overrun With Chickens

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    Your girls are considered large-breed so with your nesting boxes on the interior of the coop that is gonna be tight for sure...
     
  8. gggeek

    gggeek Out Of The Brooder

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    No problem. I consider that I did not build "by the book" but rather "by the forum" as I really researched long and hard around BYC for the consensus (which I came to 8" roost space per bird, 4sq feet per bird).

    I am also attempting to the DLM and there is 12-16" of floor space to accommodate the pine shavings. The run will be covered in shredded leaves and I will change that out regularly.

    I do have plans to free range in my yard as well and will also be working on an extended run area around my wood pile and compost piles. I really want to use the chickens to help turn over that top layer of compost regularly to aide it in composting as well as allowing the chickens to get some worms and bugs.
     
  9. sunflour

    sunflour Flock Master Premium Member

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    Whats DLM?

    Sounds like it will be chicken paradise when you get it all done. They'll love the shredded leaves and then to your compost…..I love the idea of chickens working the compost. And have started one next to their home but have not gotten fencing done to let them access it yet. Waiting til cooler weather and less ticks to deal with.

    Good luck, would love to see your set up once all accomplished.
     
  10. Ol Grey Mare

    Ol Grey Mare One egg shy of a full carton. ..... Premium Member

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    DLM is Deep Litter Method

    So there are 4 birds? The post before you edited read as you had picked up 6 birds that were 8 weeks of age.
     

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