Not sure..........

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Bantimna, Dec 27, 2009.

  1. Bantimna

    Bantimna Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 29, 2009
    South Africa
    I'm at the moment designing my Chicken Coop.
    I converted the dimensions into ft.
    How many chickens can I fit into a coop that is:

    10 ft. long and 6 ft. wide and 6ft. tall?

    Thank you. [​IMG]
     
  2. chickenpluckeroo7

    chickenpluckeroo7 Out Of The Brooder

    Figuring that you need 4 square ft. per chicken and your coop being 60 square ft. I'd say that figures up to 15 chickens. Good luck, Chickenplucker
     
  3. Bantimna

    Bantimna Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 29, 2009
    South Africa
    Thank you!
    [​IMG]
    Sibone
     
  4. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    The rule of thumb is 4 square feet per chicken in the coop along with 10 square feet per chicken in the run. If you don't have the room in the run, then you need more room in the coop. This rule of thumb does not guarantee you will never have problems based on space if you follow it. It also does not guarantee that you will have problems if you violate it. The breed and personality of your chickens and your management practices factor in. But it is a guideline that usually works.

    There are several things that make up the requirement for 4 square feet. First, it assumes you have a sufficient number of chickens for averages to mean something. If you only have 2 or 3 chickens, I'd give more room per bird.

    It assumes you feed and water in the coop, not outside. 4 square feet should give your chickens room to get to the feeder and water. When you feed them, they all want to eat at the same time so they need access to cut down on the squabbling and to help assure one is not being kept away by a bully. And they need to be where the roosting birds do not poop in them. This takes space.

    Chickens are basically ground dwelling birds, so nesting boxes do not count against the square footage if they are high enough so the chickens can get under them. If they are at ground level, though, they do reduce the available room.

    The 4 square feet gives them some personal space if they are locked in the coop for extended periods of time. It cuts down on the squabbling and fighting if they are confined by weather or if you go through a spell you cannot let them out of the coop into the run. If they are locked in the coop and not allowed outside for several days in a row, 4 square feet per bird may not be enough. That depends a lot on the personality of your individual birds. More is always better.

    The 4 square feet takes into account the poop load your coop can carry without poop becoming a big problem with standard management practices. They drop a lot of poop at night while on the roost. If you use a droppings board to help collect and remove the poop, this component becomes less important. In any case, your coop has to stay dry or poop wil be a problem.

    If you are very sure they will never be locked in the coop for any significant length of time (which means you need to get up early enough every morning to let them out when the sun comes up) and you will never lock them in the coop early in the evening because you are leaving to go somewhere, if you feed and water outside, if they have lots of room to roam outside whenever they are awake, and if you take good care of the poop load, you can probably get by with less room.

    In essence, if you are just using the coop as a roosting or roosting and egg laying area, you can get by with less, but I still believe the 4 square feet per bird is best. Few people really manage to do all this unless they are willing to take some chances with predators. It is real hard to not have times they are locked up some. I'm mentioning this to give you an idea of what goes into the rule of thumb and how your management practices can influence it.

    By the rules of thumb, I can have 38 in my run and 24 in my coop. I currently have 10 and will reduce down to my permanent laying/breeding flock of 1 rooster and 7 hens shortly. That number will go back up into the 20's when I start hatching chicks next spring, but chicks take up less space per chick. I really do believe more room is better. I'm mentioning this to also alert you to the possibility of needing more room if you hatch chicks. You should plan for the maximum number of chickens you will have, not the minimum. I've seen your posts on here. I think you will want to hatch chicks. And I think you want to understand what is going on.

    Good luck however you decide to go. I think you will do well.
     
  5. Bantimna

    Bantimna Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 29, 2009
    South Africa
    Quote:Thank you for going through so much trouble to help me.
    And I will bear in mind what you have said.
     
  6. Bantimna

    Bantimna Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 29, 2009
    South Africa
    Oops Typo's
     
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2009

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