Hi everyone! I've ordered 8 chicks to arrive at the end of April, so I'm starting to think about what we will do for a coop. We have 2.5 acres and 3 outbuildings, but have to decide what to convert to a coop. We are in VT and do not have electricity near the outbuildings, so this will need to be built for VT winters without additional heat sources. We are on a really tight budget and my dad (who's a contractor) has left a decent pile of random lumber and bits around the property (and now lives next door). We have a small turkey pen left on the property, probably 6'X6'X6' on a raised platform (but has no side walls other than chicken wire, only a roof). I was thinking of using the chicken wire and other materials as scrap for the coop and run. We also have a closed in shed raised on a platform, that's about 10'X10' and 8' tall inside with a window and door. This would probably require the least amount of modification for a coop, just a door for the hens and an attached run, aside from the roosts and nesting boxes inside. Attached to the closed shed is a open structure we used as a run-in shed for our horse years ago. This is about 12'X14' and has a high window and a big opening rather than a door, for the horse to come and go as he pleased. This has a dirt floor, I'm not sure if that's ideal for chickens in a northern climate? This is the largest structure and I thought we could modify this with some work and it would give the hens the most space, we could even build a separate nesting and roosting area within this open shed. Which do you think would be the best to modify? Anyone have pictures of structures they've modified and what they did inside? How big a run should I build for 8 (and potentially up to 12) hens? We do have predators (dogs, foxes, hawks, fishers), so they will be in a protected run. Can the structure have just a dirt floor, or do they really need to be up off the ground? Thanks!