One or Two coops?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by dekel18042, Dec 29, 2013.

  1. dekel18042

    dekel18042 Songster

    Jul 18, 2013
    In the following situation, which is preferable and what have you done? Still mulling ideas. We have five chickens in a coop designed for 6-8 chickens.
    I want to add a few more next spring. My husband got materials and plans to build a coop that should hold 10-12.
    But before we got that even off the ground, we're wondering if we should just go ahead and build one bigger coop for everyone, using the smaller ones until the newbies can join the flock or do those of you who add chickens integrate them or keep them in separate pens?
    We do have a run with the coop now, and would add runs to what we are building although most of the time they free range. In this weather, our covered front porch is their favorite hangout spot.

  2. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    Add 10 minutes per day for every coop in maintenance is my experience, on average. But then I clean each coop daily.

    At one time I had *eleven* hutches and coops going, some homemade, some rabbit hutches with chickens in them. Eleven feeders and waterers. [​IMG]Now I have only two lovely coops left and I LOVE it.

    So I would advise putting them all together when they are all about the same size (usually around 4 months of age is best but you can sometimes get away with it earlier). You can use the original coop as a growout pen/broody coop/hospital.

    However, they will NOT be friends. So there may be pecking issues to begin with and it may take a while (or never) for them to be happy with each other - the two flocks.

    You may find that it is less trouble to keep them in their original two coops. That is what I have- my silkies in their coop and the large fowl in theirs (except for two large fowl that were raised with the silkies).

    Everyone comes out in the morning and they don't socialize with each other but share the same large pen. They do eat in each others' coops [​IMG].

    You will probably figure out what you want to do as time goes by. But my most important point is to make it large enough for ALL the numbers of chickens you want and then you won't have to have two coops unless you want to.

    Auto door openers are a blessing.
  3. Kelsie2290

    Kelsie2290 Free Ranging Premium Member

    Feb 18, 2011
    It is nice to have more than one coop, even if you run your birds together, you sometimes want to separate some. If you are getting new chicks it gives you a place to grow them out until they are big enough to join the main flock, an injured bird, special birds/breeds that don't do well with the main flock, some you want to breed, a broody, even a bachelor pen for roos or if far enough away from your main coop a quarantine pen if you decide to get older birds.
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop

    30-40 feet is recommended for medical quarantine.

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