My new coop and starting my flock

Sep 10, 2021
22
128
69
Ohio
I've just started my flock with 3 pullets (1 Easter Egger, 1 Black Copper Maran, and 1 Barred Rock), and gotten a coop built by an Amish man in Ohio (Ashland). This coop is 8' X 8' and so far so good. We've added a chicken run and attached it to the coop, as well. We are beginner chicken owners and I spend a lot of time reading and researching so I'm prepared for what comes next. We are getting 3 new chicks in a few weeks to build our flock - 1 Lavender Orpington, 1 Columbian Wyandotte, and 1 Buff Brahma. Finally, in November we will be getting 2 Golden Buff Pullets.

First of all, can y'all tell me if my coop is designed correctly? Secondly, is there a problem having a mixed breed flock? If there is, (too late now) - what are the potential problems?

Coop pictures attached. Please let me know what you think 🤔.
 

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Sep 10, 2021
22
128
69
Ohio
Two more questions:

1. I dug a hole for their dust bath needs. Is it common for chickens to take a dust bath everyday, multiple times a day?

2. How do I socialize my pullets coming from a big hatchery where they aren't handled very much. It seems to be slow going for them to tolerate human contact. It seems to be improving very slowly, but they aren't having me pick them up, or feed them treats, or anything. They're super cautious and scream when I do catch them and try to hold them 😢. I want to have a close relationship with my girls and they're not having it currently! Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!!
 

Lady Red

Free Ranging
Apr 4, 2021
1,422
16,124
586
So 8 chickens in total after November? Given your research, it seems you'll be familiar with the 4+ Sq ft per chicken formula and with an 8x8 coop, that's even better.

Mine dig their own dust bath holes wherever it suits them (Pecking Garden is like a land mine field)
20210922_103713.jpg

In terms of socializing them to be pets... that is kinda up to each individual chicken. My girls are all the same age and have been together since day 1 or 2 of life. I have one that does not like being pet. I have a couple that will hop on my lap. They all will eat from our hands.
Think about it this way....some of our human family and friends are huggy types. Others are not. Chickens are the same 😊
In terms of your question of mixed breed flock, I cannot answer that with any personal experience.
Good luck and have fun!
 

WIchickMama

Crowing
Aug 15, 2021
700
2,307
303
Western WI
I agree, some of our girls love to be picked up and will sit on your lap forever and some run to the coop as soon as they see someone (aka younger DD wanting to hold chickens) and poke their head out to observe.

Same with the dust baths, my girls dig their own in the dirt and wood chips in the run. I just add more dirt/sand/ash mix every couple weeks.

Coop looks great, the only suggestion I would have is wider roosting bars, the ones in the pictures look a bit small. I have 3 larger Brahmas and we had 2x4s laid flat in a ladder style but added some 2x6 space after awhile of observing because the 2x4s weren't big enough for them to roosting comfortably (they like to lay down over their feet). Now everyone is on the 2x6s.
 

Ineke9909

Chirping
Jan 21, 2021
42
155
69
I agree, some of our girls love to be picked up and will sit on your lap forever and some run to the coop as soon as they see someone (aka younger DD wanting to hold chickens) and poke their head out to observe.

Same with the dust baths, my girls dig their own in the dirt and wood chips in the run. I just add more dirt/sand/ash mix every couple weeks.

Coop looks great, the only suggestion I would have is wider roosting bars, the ones in the pictures look a bit small. I have 3 larger Brahmas and we had 2x4s laid flat in a ladder style but added some 2x6 space after awhile of observing because the 2x4s weren't big enough for them to roosting comfortably (they like to lay down over their feet). Now everyone is on the 2x6s.
Thats funny, mine didnt like the flat 2x4, they like them on end so they can wrap their toes around. ( i like that because they don't
C9336744-DED3-4E31-8D9D-1FCE4605AB8B.jpeg
collect poop) The roost closer in the picture was flat, but they didnt use it until we flipped it up. In the outside run we have a flat 2x4 and a couple of 2-3” wide tree branches. They all hang out on the branches.
 

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