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My visit to Lowe's

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by CESpeed, Dec 27, 2012.

  1. CESpeed

    CESpeed Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The wonderful person I dragged around the store for an hour suggested that a I put a concrete floor in my coop. Is this a good ideal? If I do that should I put straw on the floor to make it more comfortable for them?

    I can't really build my coop yet because I am throughly confused about the whole nesting box thing. How does one get hens to sit and hatch eggs and raise chicks? I've been told they don't need individual nests to sit and hatch eggs, so I now have no clue about my meat birds. [​IMG]

    Can someone please help me (not interested in a different breed of chicken)? Why has this suddenly gotten complicated?
    I'm just trying to build a coop where hens can sit on eggs, hatch them and raise the chicks. If I have 6 - 12 chickens who are sitting eggs to hatch them, how many nesting boxes do I need?
     
  2. salt and pepper

    salt and pepper Chillin' With My Peeps

    concrete flooring is fine, and very predator proof, but I would definitely put bedding on it. as for the brooding hens, each broody hen needs her own space. it is actually best to keep them separate from the non broody hens, but with the number you are aiming for, I'm not sure if this would be possible. oh, and you can't make a hen go broody, they just do.
     
  3. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    Hens either go broody or they don't, and most frequently they don't. Unless you have a particularly broody breed.... Like silkies, brahmas, some Orpingtons, for example.

    Lowe's has been a god-send for me, too. The folks who have gotten to know me have been extremely helpful, but have never suggested any of my coops should have a concrete pad floor. Yes, if you build it with a concrete floor, you will need lots of bedding to cover it - about six inches worth.

    Laying hens generally lay their eggs and leave the nest after a while, although some do like to hang about in in for quite some time (an hour or two) but they also like to lay where there are already some eggs (which is why golf balls and/or wooden or ceramic eggs to "suggest" a place to lay theirs. They share nest boxes all the time. When a hen does go broody, she should be sequestered so no other hens add to her clutch when she gets off the nest to poop, eat and drink.

    Each broody hen's "broody cycle" is something known only to her and Mother Nature. Some never go broody (even if one of the broodier breeds), some go broody once and never again, and some live to hatch chicks.
     
    1 person likes this.
  4. call ducks

    call ducks silver appleyard addict

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    Concrete would be good. But it would be an investment that's for sure.

    If you with a concreate pad. Slope it to a side or down in the middle so when clean the coop out you can also take a water house and rinse it down. When i build my barn i am making sure the floor has a little slope in to a tough in the middle. (Taking ques from dairy/cattle barn) so i can push every thing in the trough and rinse down the pen floor. Also helps for sanitizing.
     
  5. CESpeed

    CESpeed Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You all are sooooo awesome! Thank you! [​IMG]
     
  6. CESpeed

    CESpeed Chillin' With My Peeps

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    What would be a good alternate to concrete? I'd love to cut down cost.
     
  7. Jakoda

    Jakoda Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I love Lowes to:) In fact I'll be there when they open in the morning, am rebuilding my coop/dutch barn that was destroyed in storm sandy, so starting the inside stuff I can do in my basement:)

    As for floor, since mine was a partioned off portion of my dutch barn, it was a wood base. I got the 2 x2 foam squares that snap together , they are mildew and fungus/ water resistent, I LOVE IT, it's easy on the feet and easy to keep clean...On top of that I use shavings..

    Of course most don't use anything other than whatever flooring they go with, I' liked the foam because I didn't want to 'rot' the wood..

    So, wood is good, you can put cheap linoleum over it, for easier cleaning,,whatever one prefers can work :)
     
  8. fisherlady

    fisherlady Overrun With Chickens

    The floor choice you make should be based on a number of different factors...
    1) What specific use is the shed/coop intended for long term.... if it is never meant to be anything other than a chicken coop then wood plank or plywood laid over 2x4 or 2x6 framing on 16" or 24" centers is fine and will last for many, many years.... if you intend to house other types of animals (goats/llama/ponies) then you begin to have issues with keeping the floor drained because the urine will begin to rot a wood floor in short order unless it is sloped well or there is a lot of bedding on it.
    2) If you aren't sure that it is always going to be a coop and may end up using it for other storage then weight support may become an issue. Chickens don't weigh anything, so the above listed wood floor is fine. Garden tractors, ATVs or even other lawn mowers start adding the weight quickly, so stronger flooring should be considered if you want to 'multi task' the building.
    3) Predators... depending on predators in your area you may want to either elevate a coop or reinforce a floor to avoid burrowing predators from getting in. We have a lot of skunks and weasels in our 'neck of the woods', black snakes are rather common too, so we chose to elevate our coop about 1.5 ft off of the ground and on the underside of the floor frame we attached metal sheeting we had taken off of a trailer we tore apart. Cement floor would be a good alternative to the need to elevate, though as others suggest it should be built with a good slope to a center drain for cleaning. You will probably find many critters may want to burrow under the coop and set up residence, but they probably won't be able to invade the coop itself, especially if you have a 6" + floor and run some reinforcement wire in it.
    4) Remember, even if you place your flooring directly onto the ground, the ground can't really be considered as part of the 'support system' so to speak. I have seen numerous sheds which were placed direct onto dirt which after a few years developed very soft floors, lack of air flow can promote rot and the other problem is that critters that dig under for a cozy home remove large amounts of dirt and can actually leave floor joists without support under them (which allows them to become soft or sag over time) Sheds I've built to sit on ground level I place over a gravel base and build on some runners to elevate them a couple of inches to reduce moisture build up.

    Sorry so long, but the base of your building can make all the difference in the world if you intend to use it for many years to come. Talk to some builders in your area, or better yet a few farmers, and see what problems they've run into with small buildings, it should help you decide how much you want to invest and how you feel best about doing it. If it is just to be used for a few seasons and then replaced then it's not so important... hope this didn't cause more confusion...
     
  9. CESpeed

    CESpeed Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Please dont apologize this is very helpful information. Thank you.
     
  10. backyardcelia

    backyardcelia Chillin' With My Peeps

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    jakoda, the foam basement type squares? the chickens don't tear them up; scratch or peck at? even with a thick bed, mine seem to clear a corner exposing the linoleum.
    hmmm, i love this idea!
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2012

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