Out of the coop and into the summer pen (PICS!)

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by UncleHoot, Apr 23, 2008.

  1. UncleHoot

    UncleHoot Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 22, 2007
    St. Johns, Michigan
    From here:
    [​IMG]

    To their summer home, here:
    [​IMG]

    So that these guys could move in:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Inside the coop, inside the brooder:
    [​IMG]

    But it's taking them a while to adjust to the new nestboxes:
    [​IMG]

    My coop is still unfinished. Last year, I HAD to get it done quickly, and I made a few mistakes which will need to be corrected once all the babies are out of the brooder. I bought a shed package, which wasn't a good decision to begin with, but except for the big expense, it seemed to work well throughout the winter.

    The babies are (hopefully all female):
    1 Black Australorp
    1 Barred Rock
    2 Buff Orpingtons
    2 Easter Eggers
    2 California Grey* Leghorns
    2 ISA Browns
    They are about 2 weeks old.

    *They called them Grey, but elsewhere I've seen them called White. They are mostly white with a couple black spots.

    The brooder is made of two window-well pieces. I got them free, since they were broken on the ends. [​IMG] Meat chickens will be going into the other half later this week. Once they're a few days old, I'll be combining all the chicks and removing the divider. Hopefully they will all get along well, but that remains to be seen.

    The hens (now about 10 months old) were moved into the pen last week. They've been there about 7 days now, but they're still not used to the new nestboxes. For the first couple days, I had eggs on the ground, then no eggs for 2 days, then they started to figure it out again. I was getting 3-5 eggs/day, but now it's 2-3/day. Hopefully that picks back up again.

    Getting the nestboxes into a PVC pen (that was really designed for broilers) took some minor engineering, and a lot of thought. Even so, it's very difficult to get the eggs, but I'm still thinking about a better way to do that. It may involve a lot of experimentation...
     
  2. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    Lookin good! Finding out what works for you is always the best!
     
  3. cgnc

    cgnc New Egg

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    Apr 24, 2008
    Chinagrove N.C.
    Thats a great idea with the pvc and tarp.Do the chicks stay in it all summer or is it just while you make your corrections?Im new to raising chickens having just purchased 18 about four weeks ago.I have not finished the coup and this seemed like a great temporary fix for summer.They are growing out of the 3x6 brooder.I guess I need to look before I leap next time.
     
  4. tiffanyh

    tiffanyh Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 8, 2007
    Connecticut
    Is that their home in the evenings too? Or do they head back into the shed at night?
     
  5. UncleHoot

    UncleHoot Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 22, 2007
    St. Johns, Michigan
    Quote:I hope to keep them in there all summer. I still have one hen who lays her egg on the ground, and another who stopped laying since the move. The other 3 seem to have adapted well, however.

    Last summer, when they were chicks, I raised them with my broilers, and moved them into the outdoor pen together at 3 weeks. But it was July, and the weather was perfect.

    They stayed in the pen until November, when they were about 18 weeks old, at which point I moved them into their new winter home, which had just been built. A few days later, I got my first egg. [​IMG]

    But anyway, any box with a roof and 4 walls will probably keep them comfortable outside (unless it gets really hot/cold), while you finish the coop.
     
  6. UncleHoot

    UncleHoot Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 22, 2007
    St. Johns, Michigan
    Quote:They're outside 24x7 right now. I let them out of the pen in the evenings when I'm home, and then I round them back up and put them back in the pen just before sunset.

    The only real problem they might face is rain straight from the east with heavy winds. Under that scenario, they're going to get wet. But they're old enough that they should be able to "weather the storm" ok.
     

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