Need help with nest boxes mounted on the outside of the coop?? Please?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Donna Lynn, Feb 16, 2013.

  1. Donna Lynn

    Donna Lynn Chillin' With My Peeps

    My husband and I are moving to the mountains (the Sierra Nevada's in CA) by the end of Spring. We currently have a small "A" frame coop that I want to modify (for more chickens, of course). In modifying it, I want to safely attach egg boxes to the outside so we can use the current spot where the bucket boxes are for more roosting area (for more chickens, of course!)

    That being said I have a barrel of safety concerns that my DH doesn't quite get but is willing to accommodate his DW. First, we will be extending the run area to accommodate more girls, no roos. Second, the egg boxes will be mounted above the run on the outside to have enough room for the additional roost. See photos below.


    Current set up & nest boxes. Remove nest buckets change the poo board and mount a new roost.




    [​IMG]


    New roost across on left just like the right and the nest boxes mounted from the outside. I can open the front doors as they are open below to reach eggs. You can't really see the doors in this photo but they are secured with sliding bolts.

    [​IMG]




    This is where the next boxes would be mounted and the new run would be the same height as the current run but extended it out six to eight more feet with hardware cloth on all sides and over the top mounted to doors that could be opened to rake & clean the run. The coop is 3 feet wide and six feet long.

    [​IMG]


    Phew all that pictured and said to ask about the nest boxes and safety. We are moving to a much less populated area where coyotes, possums, skunks, racoons, hawks, and Lord only know what else are present. I need to make sure the nest boxes are secure.

    Just so you know, the coop will sit on wire covered by stepping stones using the deep litter method. The wire and stepping stone extend beyond the bottom of the coop frame by two feet all around.

    I'd love to find boxes like the hard plastic ones that usually mount inside a coop but instead would be solid on the outside. Please see below how I modified a photo (sorry for using an existing brand photo and "bastardizing" it but I didn't know what else to do.). Would this be safe & secure enough if I could find something like this??? And if anyone knows if these already exist, please tell me where to find them.


    [​IMG]


    Thanks for any help and advice. I live in a mostly "animal" secure neighborhood now and I'm still paranoid. Living where there are coyotes and such has me really nervous about my girls.

    Donna
     
  2. danver

    danver Out Of The Brooder

    26
    2
    25
    Jan 14, 2013
    Centerton AR
    Cat litter boxes? Or attach the buckets to the out side... Cut the lid to "hinge" as a secure access "door"... Cut the bottom of the bucket to give them a lip...to hold in the nesting material. All of my nest boxes are buckets and I am going to attach the to the outside this spring...
     
  3. Mehjr10

    Mehjr10 Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,417
    83
    148
    May 17, 2012
    Moscow, TN
    Cut the top out about 1/3 of the way and leave some at the bottom to hold back the shavings.. them mount the top to the wall you can them remove the bucket for cleaning and re-snap it back on. I drilled 3/8 holes in mine on what would be the side or bottom of the bucket laying on its side so that any fine dust and or moisture can drain out.


    In looking back at your coop you will have to make a vertical wall to tie into the A frame wall so that the bucket will sit level and cut some access holes in the back side, maybe take a solid piece of board that will swing up and down to cover the openings for collecting eggs that can be secured.
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2013
  4. Donna Lynn

    Donna Lynn Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thanks for all the ideas! While we are on construction, does anyone know of a coop door that would raise & lower automatically. The door is in the bottom of the right side and lowers into the run. I love an automatic door but I haven't seen one that raises & lowers.

    Thanks again,

    Donna
     
  5. Mehjr10

    Mehjr10 Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,417
    83
    148
    May 17, 2012
    Moscow, TN
    I built my own that raises and lowers a guillotine style using a cam that keeps pressure on it when closed. There is a new one being advertised on BYC I think it is an ADoor. http://adorstore.com/products/ador1-automatic-chicken-door That is the link..

    There are some good videos on youtube.

    You could also use a linear actuator with an event timer to raise and lower the door.. I may do this the next time.. around 100 buck or so.
     
  6. Donna Lynn

    Donna Lynn Chillin' With My Peeps

    My door is in the floor of my coop and sits horizontal when closed and at an angle when open. Is there any auto-door out there that would lower like a trap door?
     
  7. Mehjr10

    Mehjr10 Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,417
    83
    148
    May 17, 2012
    Moscow, TN
  8. Donna Lynn

    Donna Lynn Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thank you! That looks like it just might work. It sure would make worrying about letting them out in the morning a little easier.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by