Pallet Coop for Texas Chickens

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by CaliTX, Nov 4, 2012.

  1. CaliTX

    CaliTX Out Of The Brooder

    Jun 30, 2012
    Central TX
    We are about to begin working on a pallet coop! My husband brought home some HUGE pallets for me (probably 6ft by 7 or 8ft) and we want to use them as the walls, etc. I have a few questions..

    Floor or no floor? If no floor, which I understand is best for deep litter method type situations, are there extra precautions to take to make the coop more sturdy?

    How closed-in should it be? DH wants to leave it open/not board it up, but I feel it would be safest and most comfortable for them if it was closed in and just had a window for ventilation on each wall. We live in Central Texas. It gets VERY hot in the summer and while my chickens will only be in the coop at night for the most part, I don't want to cook them in there! I imagine they will need a window fan to push some circulation through in the hotter months.

    Any tips for making it quite sturdy? We are trying to do this as inexpensively as possible so it would be best if we could work with what wood we have rather than going out and buying a bunch of new materials, but I understand we will probably need to buy a few things.
  2. ryeguy

    ryeguy Out Of The Brooder

    Aug 25, 2012
    One of the biggest priorities will be keeping them safe from predators (including neighborhood dogs). You definitely want them enclosed at night. When I built our coop I spent a great deal of time looking through the coops section on here and taking ideas from my favorite builds.

    I'm really interested to hear what you have to say after you get your chickens. We have a Border Collie as well and she is just about 6 months old. We were worried she may try to hurt the chickens, but she literally herds them. With no training or instigation from us. Before we finished our coop we would put them outside in a chain link dog pen the previous owners of our house left. She would literally circle the pen all day long, non-stop. She made so many laps she wore the grass down to a dirt circle around the pen.

    Eventually the chickens discovered they could fly out of the pen and every once in a while one would manage to get out. At first we were considered they'd book it and run under the fence and get out of the yard, but Tinny would just circle them and force them back towards the pin. We would just let the chicken explore the area for a bit because we knew she wouldn't let them run off.

    Now that we have the coop done she spends half of her day jogging around it and the other half chasing squirrels.
  3. TXchickmum

    TXchickmum Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 21, 2012
    North Texas
    We live in North Central Texas and used (recycled) cedar fence pickets for our coops. We only purchased metal roofing and hardware cloth. Ours are coop/run combos. The tops are the coops (enclosed on two sides and open on two with hardware cloth for sides). The bottoms are completely open with hardware cloth for sides and buried underneath (with dirt floor). The summer heat is a huge factor here in Texas, and our birds did very well with the open-air coops. -very secure, too, with the hardware cloth. Pallets should be great material for the climate. I would not have an enclosed coop (even in lieu of a few windows). -would recommend lots of ventilation and open space (and obviously night-time security from predators). As far as being sturdy, you could fasten the pallet boards together in order to construct thicker boards for support. Again, pallets should be adequate material for a Texas coop, IMO.
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2012
  4. Ehirning

    Ehirning Out Of The Brooder

    May 18, 2012
    I build a coop from pallets as well. I used a coupe pallets with plywood on them for the floor and took other pallets apart to fill in the bigger gaps between boards. It's not pretty, but the girls don't care. To hold the pallets together, I used bailing wire and a few screws. All in all, I think this cost me about $4.50. Here's a link to a few of my pallet coop.

    I've since expanded and added more coop (and chickens). I'll try to get some pics of that too.
  5. CaliTX

    CaliTX Out Of The Brooder

    Jun 30, 2012
    Central TX
    Thank you all!
    We started on it yesterday but didn't get too far, but two walls are up! It's actually pretty sturdy already, surprisingly. We are going to go ahead and do a floor out of pallets and cover them with plywood, and I have a bunch of peel and stick linoleum left over from the previous home owner so I think I'll use those as well so that when I change out shavings it should be pretty easy to get everything nice and clean!

    Ryeguy, I actually have two chickens already. I have four dogs total- the BC in my avatar, an Australian Shepherd, a BC/Aussie mix (best guess), and a Chinese Crested. I haven't turned them loose with the chickens yet with the exception of the little guy. The BC and BC/Aussie will circle the run and the Aussie watches them quite closely, the first day there was a lot of "diving" at the chickens but I'm hoping eventually they will be okay with them. They're getting better but the BC/Aussie makes sure the first thing he does every morning is check on the chickens.... not sure yet if thats a good thing or a bad thing!

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