Newbie needs help finishing coop...

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by neversaychick, Apr 9, 2009.

  1. neversaychick

    neversaychick Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 23, 2009
    This is what my husband has built so far.
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    I know he is thinking what he built inside will be the nesting boxes. Do they need an indoor sleeping area also if we live in SC? We will have 9 RIR hens if all goes well!


    Please help this newbie finish the coop.

    Thanks!!
     
  2. ~*Sweet Cheeks*~

    ~*Sweet Cheeks*~ Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 12, 2009
    Olympia Washington
    Very nice and roomy.

    I think grown hens like roosting at night. I moved my stock tank brooder out in the coop with my ten 7 wk olds and they still go in the stock tank with shavings and heat lamp to sleep over choosing the roost with heat lamp to the side.

    What are your day/night time temps?
     
  3. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Ontario, Canada
    If there's nowhere for them to roost out of the wind and rain, on windy/rainy nights, I'd expect you'll have them crowding into the nestboxes to sleep (and poo). Probably worth creating some sort of roost area with wind blocked from the direction of prevailing storms.

    If that mesh is larger than 1/2x1/2", make sure the roost does not run near, or end at, the mesh wall, otherwise raccoons can reach thrugh and grab handfulls of sleeping chickens, with horrible results.

    JMO, good luck, have fun,

    Pat
     
  4. neversaychick

    neversaychick Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks so much for helping! Keep 'em coming. I was worried about them not having a true shelter area. I think we need to work on that.

    I plan on taking the brooder box out there in a week or two and leave it until they settle in. They are 4 weeks now and in the garage. Temps this week are 55/75. Although we had a weird cold snap ealier this week and we went down to 32.

    I've read a few posts that say the roosts should be higher than the nesting boxes. Why is that? May be a problem for us since we built the nesting boxes so high. I would like to put roosts on the lip of the boxes. Where else should we put them? And how high should they be?
     
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2009
  5. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Ontario, Canada
    Quote:I'd be real careful with that... even when they are fully feathered, which they won't yet be in a week, they are still small-bodied and much more vulnerable to cold (especially cold with moving air, which is almost guaranteed outdoors) than when they're full sized. If they're going outdoors, might ought to have something fully enclosed for them and leave a lamp on (extension cord?) so they can warm up if needed.

    I've read a few posts that say the roosts should be higher than the nesting boxes. Why is that?

    Because chickens naturally want to sleep in the highest place possible. If that highest place is the nestbox, they will sleep in the nestbox, thus produce vast amounts of POO in the nestbox, thus you will have pooey eggs.

    May be a problem for us since we built the nesting boxes so high. I would like to put roosts on the lip of the boxes. Where else should we put them? And how high should they be?

    You know what. It looks like your nestbox is all one big box? Might it be possible to convert THAT into your sheltered roosting area -- just run a 2x4 down the length of the inside of it, 8" or so above the box's floor or whatever it takes to have at least 16" clearance above the roost? (e.t.a - you need 8-12" roost length for each hen, so 9 would require a 7-9' long roost, or two parallel ones)

    And then build separate, more normal nestboxes *underneath* that part? For 9 hens you only need 2-3 nestboxes, perhaps 12x12 or 12x16 footprint each.

    Something like that would set you up pretty well with minimal work.

    Good luck, have fun,

    Pat​
     
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2009
  6. CityChook

    CityChook Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My Coop
    I can't tell from the photos - is the wire buried or at least anchored to something at the ground level? You wouldn't want a predator to come in under the walls.
     
  7. neversaychick

    neversaychick Out Of The Brooder

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    Quote:Pat,
    I just wanted to thank you for taking the time to look at this and post. We love your idea and have been working on it over the weekend. It is going to take us a while longer to get it all together, but when we finish I'll post new pictures.

    CityChook - DH is working on the the perimeter also. We knew we needed to do something there also. DH has actually been pouring concrete to make that more secure.
    Thanks again!! [​IMG]
     

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