Place for chickens to sleep at night?

ChookieFanatic

In the Brooder
Dec 7, 2020
1
1
11
Hello, I am a new member here also inexperienced with taking care of chickens, but I am planning on getting two: a silkie and a buff orpington as backyard chicken pets. I am planning on releasing them in the morning to free roam around the backyard, but bringing them back inside the patio for them to sleep so I do not have to worry about any predators. I look at coop designs and they're all pretty big, and I don't really need a coop. Anyone have any ideas what I could build or anything I could buy for the little chickens to sleep at night? I was thinking about buying a bunny hutch and putting a roosting bar in it, and 2 nesting boxes, but I'd like some advice or recommendations before I do anything. Thank you! :)
 

Hei 20

Free Ranging
Oct 8, 2020
1,926
10,857
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Hello, I am a new member here also inexperienced with taking care of chickens, but I am planning on getting two: a silkie and a buff orpington as backyard chicken pets. I am planning on releasing them in the morning to free roam around the backyard, but bringing them back inside the patio for them to sleep so I do not have to worry about any predators. I look at coop designs and they're all pretty big, and I don't really need a coop. Anyone have any ideas what I could build or anything I could buy for the little chickens to sleep at night? I was thinking about buying a bunny hutch and putting a roosting bar in it, and 2 nesting boxes, but I'd like some advice or recommendations before I do anything. Thank you! :)
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black_cat

♥♥Lover of Leghorns♥♥
Premium Feather Member
May 21, 2020
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Connecticut
Are you ok with big piles of poop inside wherever you're keeping them? Because chickens poop the most while they're sleeping. For this to work, the would need free access to the indoors all day so that they can go inside in case of bad weather.
 

Ridgerunner

Crossing the Road
12 Years
Feb 2, 2009
28,055
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Southeast Louisiana
I am planning on getting two: a silkie and a buff orpington as backyard chicken pets.

I suggest a minimum of three. Chickens are social animals and do much better with other chickens around. If you have two and something happens to one the survivor can be very lonely. Starting with three gives you a chance to find another if something happens.

I look at coop designs and they're all pretty big, and I don't really need a coop.

Coop can mean different things to different people. Don't get too hung up on words. What they need is a a predator proof place to sleep. We like to give them a place to lay eggs. They need to be able to get out of bad weather. I don't know where you are located so I have no idea what weather or predators you may face. The longer they are stuck inside when they are awake the larger that space needs to be. If you feed and water in there you need room for that so they don't poop in it at night. You'll have to search long and hard on here to find anybody saying their coop is too big. You don't have to look too hard to find someone complaining about a problem caused by their coop being too small.

A rabbit hutch might work. I don't know how big yours is or what it looks like. I don't know how suitable it might be for your winters or summers.
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium Feather Member
9 Years
Nov 27, 2012
100,701
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SW Michigan
My Coop
My Coop
but bringing them back inside the patio for them to sleep so I do not have to worry about any predators.
Predators happen during the day too.
What does this patio look like?

Oh, and..... Welcome to BYC! @ChookieFanatic
Where in this world are you located?
Climate, and time of year, is almost always a factor.
Please add your general geographical location to your profile.
It's easy to do, and then it's always there!
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CinnaBun

Chirping
Apr 9, 2020
126
144
93
Southern California
You might want to —
1- research chicken breeds that are good with free-range / foraging. I don’t think silkies are the best because of the crest. Maybe look at only having bantams? (Barred Rock Bantams, Cochin Bantams, Welsummer Bantam?)
2- look around your home and neighborhood for structures you can use as a coop. Folks convert large doghouses, children’s playhouses, small sheds, etc. A premade coop might be OK since it will be out of the elements.
 

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