1. greenbottle27

    greenbottle27 Out Of The Brooder

    85
    0
    39
    Jun 11, 2011
    Southern NJ
    Hi! I am a newbie to the chicken world. I have a very small back yard and limited space, however, I do have a 6' privacy fence aroundmy postage stamp. I honestly only want 1 chicken, but my husband thinks we should have at least 2 to keep each other company. I know he is right, but as I do more research, I think I'd actually like to have 2 chickens and a guinea because our mosquito issue is sooooo bad. But, I don't know if that makes sense for our situation. Anyways.... after breezing thru some of these pictures of coops, I'm almost afraid to share my WIP as it is so joe-blow and small compared to what y'all have. I am reallly jealous - I wish we could have a more elaborate set-up but our space is really limited.

    Coop should be done next week. It is 6'Lx4'Wx5'H as pictured. However, I am having 2 8"x8" windows put in (will cover with plexiglass in the winter?) and also putting a strip of hardwire flooring under the natural perch inside. I'd like suggestions on how to upgrade the roof after I get it home - shingles, skylight, leave it?? Also based on the small size, let me know the max number of chickens you would put in there. I have come to realize that 4x4/bird depends on the person. I personally think this coop is only big enough for one, but that's cause I like to spoil my pack [​IMG] Keep in mind that because I have a totally fenced yard, I will be free ranging them while I am home. We have domesticated prediators and some bald eagles, but my biggest concern would be the neighborhood kids. Ok, they are not that bad. Well... maybe....

    Insulation too is a concern of mine. Our winters in Salem County, NJ are not that harsh but we did get pounded these past few years. I have no electric to the coop - it is not an option. Should I just chillax? Long as they are draft free with ample bedding and water/food they will be fine, right?

    Ack... I'm so embarassed to post these. This is the most generic, tiniest coop known to chicken [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    This gives you an idea of how much free range grass area we have and our tiny garden. It is so tiny I bet you can't find it! LOL!
    [​IMG]

    Different angle
    [​IMG]

    Here, in front of the fence there is a flower bed (behind the grill/bar). We plan to put the coop in that flower bed since right now it is an unattended mess!
    [​IMG]

    We planned on bumping out out current stockade fence and getting a whole new configuration, however, I was told by my DH that money doens't grow on trees..???[​IMG] SO, that project will wait.... here you can see if we bumped out the fence (just to include the area where my car is) the space my pack would gain. Also in my fence plan was to pull up the fence to the right of the house because all of the little strip of mulch and evergreens is wasted - with the exception of housing my neighbors scrufty cat.
    [​IMG]

    Sorry about the heavy pics and longwinded post!
    All feedback is greatly appreciated!
    Follow me ... my next post will be about what breed I need/want [​IMG]
     
  2. Gallusfarm

    Gallusfarm Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,023
    19
    163
    Jul 14, 2009
    Well, I think it's great! I think it will be fine for two - like you said, you need two. I don't know about guineas, they are a big pain, IMO...

    You should be fine in the winter - read this if you get a chance: https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=421122

    You
    def need the windows for ventilation.

    You have done the right thing by getting the coop first. Good luck!!
     
  3. sky king

    sky king Out Of The Brooder

    88
    0
    39
    Apr 25, 2011
    Rome GA
    Now place
     
  4. WatWasIThinking!!!

    WatWasIThinking!!! Chillin' With My Peeps

    85
    1
    89
    Apr 15, 2011
    Very nice backyard! Coop is very nice too.
     
  5. CindyG

    CindyG Chillin' With My Peeps

    That's a nice backyard, but I think you're going to find that even two chickens can make a lot of mess. They don't understand that you don't want them up on your chairs and tables and leaving their little piles everwhere. Also, they scratch at the grass till they get down to bare earth. Maybe a run dedicated to them away from your nice patio, out where your car is parked will be the answer. The coop is just fine for them, if all they are going to do is sleep in there at night. Give them a bit of shade/shelter in the run and they will do just fine.
     
  6. rival001

    rival001 Out Of The Brooder

    71
    0
    28
    Apr 15, 2011
    ca
    wow your backyard is so nice.. [​IMG]
     
  7. greenbottle27

    greenbottle27 Out Of The Brooder

    85
    0
    39
    Jun 11, 2011
    Southern NJ
    Thanks everybody for the input and compliments. DH did it all but build the shed, set the table and set-up my pool [​IMG] He has a hardscaping company. If he could build a coop made of pavers, it would be the BOMB!

    I think I talked my self out of the guinea - too loud, reason number 1 and only!

    CindyG - I can't shake your post out of my head... All I can picture now are 2 chickens perched on my bar and patio table... no grass....and poop all over the patio, table and grill. For real??? I have one dog that will only poop and pee ON the pavers and although it needs to be cleaned-up, it isn't the end of the world. But, if 2 chickens are going to destroy my entire back yard, I seriously need to re-think this. Putting a run outside the fence is not an option. But what might be is to just put up a little fence around that flower bed and enclose that coop area as a run - just kinda fence/retain them in that area with the coop door open. Then at night I would secure them in the coop. Basically a fenced in coop. Does that make sense?? We would need special fence....hmmmm.... Maybe that would resolve the issue?

    Or, I just throw in the towel and sell the coop and forget it.

    To be honest, I never read the "downside" to freerange - destruction and all. Now I'm bummed.
     
  8. allieloveschickens

    allieloveschickens Chillin' With My Peeps

    834
    0
    119
    May 20, 2010
    San Diego
    Chickens can be pretty destructive, though mine have not destroyed our lawn, they do poop everywhere- and my dog tries to eat it! [​IMG] But if you can build a little run area for them then they will be fine. You should definitely get two though because they are very social- for two chickens you would only need 20sq ft run for them. On days my girls can't free range I just give them lots of greens - like my lettuce that has gone to seed, and they are pretty happy. I think your coop looks good!
     
  9. greenbottle27

    greenbottle27 Out Of The Brooder

    85
    0
    39
    Jun 11, 2011
    Southern NJ
    Quote:Gotcha. Thanks for the reply! Space is limited but I think I have a back-up idea to the "fenced in coop" plan... I jsut need to until after church tomorrow to bring it up with the DH. He is about past tired of hearing about chickens [​IMG] He was watching the Orioles on TV tonight and after the batter hit the ball I yelled "FOWL ball!" *lol* With that I got the stink eye, so I shut up [​IMG]

    About the poop and the dog.... My one greyhound, Gabby, is addicted to goose poop. The field we walk in is loaded with geese and their poo... and Gabby goes BONKERS over the poop. Yes, beyond gross, I know. I obviously don't want anybody eating any poop period, but is there anything "bad" in chicken poop that I need to be aware of if the hounds develop an taste for it?

    I will get 2, I promise [​IMG] You can't be a lone peep in life, right?

    After I get the coop and can put my "girlie" touches on it, I'll post pictures. I can't wait to see it with the windows and modifications. I am tickled pink it only cost me $250 to have it built.
     
  10. krcote

    krcote Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,106
    17
    204
    May 21, 2008
    Concord, NH
    You will have more poop all over your tabel, chairs, patio etc. than you know what do to with.... and it will drive you nuts. There is nothing wrong with keeping chickens confined to a run. Do not sell your coop. Revise the run. Make it a little larger. I can not free range my birds and they are happy, healthy and give me plenty of eggs. My dogs eat LOTS of chicken poop every time I move my meat-bird tractor to a new section of grass. There are no serious ill effects from poo eating besides bad breath... but you have a greyhound so it can't get much worse [​IMG]

    Do not be discouraged!!!! You can do it!
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by