need roost ideas/advice

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by kari_dawn, Dec 15, 2011.

  1. kari_dawn

    kari_dawn Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So, I have now gotten my deer blind chicken coop mostly painted, and need to begin working on turning it into a chicken coop....I have a 4x4 by 6ft tall space to work with. There are three pre-cut windows, 8 x 36 I believe, that I will be augmenting. I will also be adding ventilation at the top edge of the structure on three sides. I would like to encorporate a shelf for the girls to sleep on, and maybe roost bars so they can choose either or. Because of the small size I am working with, I am going to retain my free-standing nest box for now. I need ideas on kinds of roosts and placement to optimize space, and something that works efficiently and well within the parameters that I have. One of my concerns is the placement of the pre-cut windows. I was contemplating puting a shelf up using a couple of corner braces as supports, but they are directly below one fo the windows. Would this be bad for my girls to roost directly infront of a window? I don't know how to make it all work. Ideas please?

    [​IMG]

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  2. Time-Out

    Time-Out Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mine love to look out the window in the morning [​IMG] I think they check the weather before coming out!
    Will you be putting perspex or something over the windows? If you have extra ventilation under the roof, you could have openable windows in the pre-cut holes, so you can close them in winter and open in Summer or something. That way, you can put the shelf where you wanted and the ladies get a nice view.

    I've seen some coops on here that look a bit like a chinchilla cage, with three levels of wide shelves and ramps in between. That would give your girls extra space, say if you had nest boxes on Floor 1 and perches on Floor 2 or something. I'm just not sure it'll be very practical to clean out!

    When you said ventilation on three sides under the roof, is that because you'll be putting a sloping roof on? It's a good idea to.
     
  3. Ole rooster

    Ole rooster Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Is that a '49 of or a '51 Chev pickup in the picture. I put a lot of miles on those.[​IMG]
     
  4. cravenchx

    cravenchx Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hello kari-dawn!
    Nice job. In my meager 6 month
    experience, chickens will want to roost
    as high as they can get. Our second roost
    was directly in front of a window, and they
    faced it. Now that they are big girls, we have
    3 roosts higher, and that's where they go. Also
    the 3 roosts run diagonally.
    If you could make a nest box incorporating one
    of your windows to retrieve eggs would be great.
    Good luck, keep us posted![​IMG]
     
  5. Time-Out

    Time-Out Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:now that's a clever idea!
     
  6. cmom

    cmom Hilltop Farm

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    My Coop
  7. cravenchx

    cravenchx Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:now that's a clever idea!

    But, remember, to try not to have them roost over the nest
    box. It just will be too messy!
     
  8. wyododge

    wyododge Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We put ours right in front of the window. We close that window of in the winter, but it gets REALLY cold here and the wind comes right out of the north and into that window. you can see what we did on our page. I would put as many roosts as possibly and have them spiral up to the top. Let them roost where they want to. If it is too hot, they can come down, if too cold they can go up. You will find they ALWAYS roost high. At the top I would do a perimeter roost all the way around 12-14" off the wall and 12-14" inches below the ceiling.

    I would also put a vent in the roof.

    The nest box in the window is a great idea too. Just screw the nest boxes right on the outside of the coop. If your window is 8" make your nest box 15 or 18" so they climb down into it. It will allow for a really deep nesting bed. You can also make the bottom of the nest boxes hinged so all you have to do is park a wheel barrow under it and drop the floor to clean it out.

    We also screwed 12" scrap pieces of OSB over the corners of the floor to get rid of the 90*. They will pack up with bedding. The 45* slope helps reduce that and makes it much easier to clean. We did it on the walls as well, but our coop is built inside of a hundred year old barn and I didn't feel like scribing every piece of OSB for a perfect fit. The only square in the coop was the goober holding the hammer...
     
  9. SC_Hugh

    SC_Hugh Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I removed the ladder style roost and installed a very easy to built sideways L roost that is connected to the wall.

    Check it -

    [​IMG]
     
  10. kari_dawn

    kari_dawn Chillin' With My Peeps

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    well, my dad made me a free standing nest box, and I figure I should keep it A, because Daddy made it, and B, because the amount of space I have is very limited in the deer blind, though I did consider cutting the roost bar off of it, and butting it up to one of the deer blind windows...it just so happens that it is the same height as the pre-exhisting windows! Then again, the more ventilation/window space the better for summer time. It does have a sloped roof, just hard to see from that angle! Here is a pic so you can see the slope of the roof better. I will be cutting a three inch slot down the length of three walls right below where they meet the roof.

    [​IMG]

    I was thinking of enlarging the windows up to the wood brace and making them 24 x 36, and maybe putting some of those old shop windows in sideways so they can be opened and closed, but it may be easier to just do hardware cloth and plexiglass so I can remove the plexi completely durring summer months. I haven't decided just yet.

    The reason I thought of a shelf is that it seems like several people on BYC have shelves, and their girls really like them, and right now, they roost on the flat top of my nest box. I scrape it off and compost it when I clean, but roost poles would probably be cleaner!

    I like the spiral roost idea, or maybe a hinged ladder near the celing so I can move it out of the way while cleaning? If I was to do sand as a flooring, how deep would it need to be? Is play sand what most people use?

    Quote:I was wondering if anyone would notice her! That is my ol 51 chevy long bed three window. She has been through a lot in her day! She rolled all the way over down the side of a hill once, long ago in her lifetime (This old lady has been in the family a while) and came up in one piece, without so much as a dent...they just don't make them like that anymore!
     

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