New Coop

bluebutterfly

Chirping
Jan 22, 2017
9
26
54
Middle of Louisiana, USA
Hey Everyone!

I am looking for some professional review of my new coop. We are in Louisiana. This coop is a 5x5x6. The coop is up off the ground on cinder blocks. There are three windows for ventilation, covered with welded wire both inside the coop and out.

My question right now is do I need to further cover the windows with anything else or will they be good like they are?

Also, about how many chickens can comfortably sleep in this coop? My chickens are free range except for night. I have no water or feed inside. The floor is layered with pine straw and hay.

I only have a RIR rooster and a Barred Rock hen, both of which are at least six years old. They have, up until this month, slept outside on my carport. I FINALLY got my hubby to let me have this deerstand house for a coop and I want to get it right.

Any advice is appreciated!
 

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rosemarythyme

Scarborough Fair
Premium Feather Member
Jul 3, 2016
15,874
30,488
1,052
WA, Pac NW
My Coop
My Coop
I would cover those windows with a much smaller wire mesh, no larger than 1/2" (you can leave the wire that's already there, it'll be good support material. Whether or not you need something over that depends on your weather and winds - you don't want rain blowing in, but you may need to wait through a rainstorm to find out if the current orientation of windows is an issue or not.

General rule of thumb is 4 sq ft per chicken but since you don't have to deal with cold you can probably push that a little more than people in colder climates. Keep in mind integration does tend to require space though, if you're planning on having young birds join the current ones. How many chickens were you hoping to have?
 

bluebutterfly

Chirping
Jan 22, 2017
9
26
54
Middle of Louisiana, USA
Thank you for responding so quickly! We have been through two large bouts of rainy days and so far everything inside is very dry.

I do plan to add new chickens to the older ones at some point. I don't wish to have a large flock, probably no more than ten hens. We also have about 14 Muscovy ducks that come and go from our yard to our pond. So, I want to keep the chick group small enough that I can "know" each of them. I just didn't know if that would be too many to sleep in this coop. I do intend to continue to free range them during the day as we also have dogs to keep watch.
 

rosemarythyme

Scarborough Fair
Premium Feather Member
Jul 3, 2016
15,874
30,488
1,052
WA, Pac NW
My Coop
My Coop
Thank you for responding so quickly! We have been through two large bouts of rainy days and so far everything inside is very dry.

I do plan to add new chickens to the older ones at some point. I don't wish to have a large flock, probably no more than ten hens. We also have about 14 Muscovy ducks that come and go from our yard to our pond. So, I want to keep the chick group small enough that I can "know" each of them. I just didn't know if that would be too many to sleep in this coop. I do intend to continue to free range them during the day as we also have dogs to keep watch.

Great to know that it stays dry inside with rain, means they're oriented well for your site.

10 birds is more than I would put in there however you might be able to get away with it, it's impossible to say until you try. I'd say maybe 7, 8 at most, but maybe you could get away with a couple more since they're free ranging otherwise.

Also I didn't notice a nest box, is that something you'll add later or are you doing boxes externally elsewhere? Nest boxes inside a coop eat up some space so that's also something to take into account as far as how many birds can fit in there.
 

bluebutterfly

Chirping
Jan 22, 2017
9
26
54
Middle of Louisiana, USA
We are thinking of putting a nest box or two inside maybe up higher than the roosting poles.....we were actually just wanting to get these older chicks into a safer and warmer place and didn't really consider nest box space since we used a boxed deer stand my hubby made. We were thinking that a couple nest boxes up a little higher would work for any new layers we get. Is that a possibility?
 

blackdog043

Crowing
Feb 19, 2017
2,360
3,962
396
SE PA
The nest boxes need to be lower than the roost poles or they will roost in the nest boxes. Then you will have poop filled nest boxes. Chickens will go to the highest place they can, to roost. You might want to think about making external nest boxes, level with the floor or just above.
 

bluebutterfly

Chirping
Jan 22, 2017
9
26
54
Middle of Louisiana, USA
Thank you! I will definitely take these things into consideration. The hen we have hasn't laid in several years, so I think I have time to figure out the next boxes before we bring in any new chicks. And we will block off the bottom with probably bricks. Thanks for the tips! Any and all are appreciated.
 

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