My store bought coop, is it really large enough and what about vents????

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by kjimenez, Sep 16, 2012.

  1. kjimenez

    kjimenez Out Of The Brooder

    17
    0
    22
    Sep 6, 2012
    Hi, I'm new to raising chickens and currently have 4 (7 week old) pullets. I bought a coop at Big R but am worried about a few things.Please see all of my many questions below. Here is my coop.
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]
    The inside area including the nesting boxes is 2'2" x 2'4". This includes the above nesting boxes and the roosts. Big R said this was large enough for 4 - 6 chickens, but now everything I have read says I need twice this amount. Is this large enough for my 4 chickens? The overall size including the run area within the coop is 6 1/2 ' x 2 1/2 '. Do I need to enclose that entire area? We plan on building a chicken run that will be around 5' x 12' so we could certainly enclose this if needed.
    [​IMG]
    My next question is about the ramp leading to their door. There is a doorway, but no cover. Do I need a locking cover on their door for nighttime?
    [​IMG]
    Last question is about venting. I've read that we need venting and this coop has none other than the door with no flap. Is this something we need to put in or do we not want vents in Colorado? I live in Colorado Springs, CO, so we do get snow and cold temps in the winter. Though not all winter long, just weeks here and there. Should we insulate it? I am not positive what breed of chicks I have, but think I have 2 buff orpingtons and 2 road island reds.
     
  2. HEChicken

    HEChicken Overrun With Chickens

    7,544
    172
    316
    Aug 12, 2009
    BuCo, KS
    My Coop
    Unfortunately, the commercially made coops are rarely big enough for the number of chickens they state. As a general rule, you want 4 sq. ft of space per chicken inside the coop, and 10 sq. ft per chicken in the run. For your four chickens, you would want 16 sq ft of coop space and 40 sq. ft in the fun. Minimum. (More space is always better, in my opinion).

    The coop dimensions you mentioned make it only really big enough for 1-2 chickens in the coop and run, both.

    Since the run is enclosed by hardware cloth, it is probably okay that the door to the coop itself doesn't close, unless it is oriented so that drafts are blowing right in that door and a chicken is sitting on a roost where she is subject to those drafts.

    Is it too late to return it and build your own? You will almost always get more bang for your buck building your own space for them.
     
  3. BeulahBreezes

    BeulahBreezes Chillin' With My Peeps

    348
    11
    111
    Mar 31, 2012
    Western NY
    Hi! I have a very similiar coop....(see my photos here). I have 4 chickens, who have out grown the henhouse area....yes, the wholesaler that I bought it from also said 3 - 5 chickens could be comfortable here. Not so...we are going to build UP over the henhouse. It'll be a 2 story henhouse. I'll post pictures when we finish this project. One thing that is different is that our pop door has a handle to close and open the door. In the cold weather, and when my chicks were younger, I closed the door. This summer I have left the door open at night and locked up the pen. Be sure to add extra locks to the door, and poop tray. We added another set of locks to the egg box too. We also attached a 1/2 inch hardware wire enclosed pen, which we are also going to enlarge! Good luck....this coop is definately 'do-able' for your chickens! ~Beulah
     
  4. BeulahBreezes

    BeulahBreezes Chillin' With My Peeps

    348
    11
    111
    Mar 31, 2012
    Western NY
    Oh....we also have a vent in the back of the coop......works great!
     
  5. kjimenez

    kjimenez Out Of The Brooder

    17
    0
    22
    Sep 6, 2012
    I thought about enclosing the coop we have to make it all solid and then attach a run. Not sure what to do but the chicks will be ready to go outside in 3 weeks, so I need to make decisions.
     
  6. kjimenez

    kjimenez Out Of The Brooder

    17
    0
    22
    Sep 6, 2012
    Can you post photos of your coop?
     
  7. leadwolf1

    leadwolf1 Chillin' With My Peeps

    3,705
    99
    213
    May 1, 2011
    Even if the run is made of hardware cloth, you would still need to lock them in at night. There are many predators out there that will dig right underneath the run. Without a skirting dug in at least a foot deep, the predators will go right under.
     
  8. BeulahBreezes

    BeulahBreezes Chillin' With My Peeps

    348
    11
    111
    Mar 31, 2012
    Western NY
    leadwolf...We do have the hardware cloth skirted around, (into the ground) the coop and pen...........and then we placed extra-large/heavy patio blocks and rocks all around the edges.
     
  9. leadwolf1

    leadwolf1 Chillin' With My Peeps

    3,705
    99
    213
    May 1, 2011
    Great. I can't really tell that by the pictures :) I just didn't want you to think that they would be safe just because the run was made from hardware cloth. That is a mistake that others have made and lived to regret it.

    I think that it is a great little coop to use for a grow out pen for your girls. You can figure out how to make it bigger as they grow. At 7 weeks, that is plenty of room and safe for them to roam in. You really want to try for as much venting as possible. One small door isn't enough...not even for the babies. Good luck. Maybe you could post some pics for us to enjoy as you figure out how to transform it into a big girl's coop :)
     
  10. mrsabbott

    mrsabbott Out Of The Brooder

    19
    2
    24
    Sep 20, 2012
    I have the same exact coop. So does my neighbor. He currently has 3 chickens (2 hens and a banty) and they seem to do fine with it. It is only used as a sleeping area for his chickens. They have a much larger run where they spend their time. We haven't gotten our chickens yet (hopefully today) but ours will also have a much larger area to run around and forage and the coop is for "sleeping". I was planning on getting 4 chicks, but I might just get 3 because I don't want them to be too crowded in there.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by