Placement of Coop - Tips

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by 4theloveofhens, Jul 12, 2010.

  1. 4theloveofhens

    4theloveofhens Songster

    May 26, 2010
    I live in Northern Colorado and am looking for some help as far as coop placement goes. Does it matter which way your coop faces the sun, mountains, etc? What I mean is, How does everyone decide what direction their coop/run will face? North, south, etc.

    Also, if anyone is from CO, is insulation REALLY necessary? I"m on a tight budget and really wasn't planning on it. I may either have a coop of wood or a little tykes playhouse coop, whatever I can afford first. I only have 4 pullets and one of them is a bantam cochin, the others are 2 Red stars/sex link (That's the same thing, right?) and a wyandotte.

    Thanks a bunch
  2. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

    Jul 9, 2009
    Northern CA
    My Coop
    Which direction does the harsh winter weather come from? Ours comes from the south, so our coop faces north. You also want to take into consideration the summer heat, don't place windows where the afternoon sun will shine directly into the coop. Keep in mind drainage for rain/snow.
  3. 33yardbirds

    33yardbirds Songster

    Jun 15, 2010
    Southern New Jersey
    I backed ours up to a nice thick swamp with cedars sheep lauel and briers which happens to be north so the winter wind is kept to a minimum. A big 36" 60" sliding window to the south for solar heat in the winter. Entry door (man) to the east because our storms mostly come from the NW. Of course a screen door and screen on the windows, plus gable vents to keep it cool in the summer.
  4. onthespot

    onthespot Deluxe Dozens

    Mar 29, 2008
    Riverside/Norco, CA
    I live in So Cal, so here, heat and shade are the most important issues to deal with. Lots of posts in the winter months about dealing with mud, drainage, rotting muddy fly heaven if you have trouble reaching the messy places to clean. Make sure it is accessible to clean where they poop, #1. Make sure their feed stays dry and their water stays cool, and is where you can clean it or break the ice and change it out if you are where it freezes.
  5. darkmatter

    darkmatter Songster

    Jul 10, 2009
    Mine faces the Southwest so it gets the maximum light in the winter. In the summer, the trees are leafed out and its in the shade all day. See my BYC page for pics, I have two windows, the main double window faces south southwest, the side window faces west. (both windows were salvaged, as was all but the plywood sheathing. My design was a combination of what I wanted with what I could get salvage.
  6. Whatever you do, just make sure it is convenient for you to feed, water, clean, and collect eggs. They are so much easier to enjoy when these tasks are not difficult chores. When the weather is nasty a few small things can make so much difference (like outside access nest boxes). As far as insulation, Wyandottes are cold harde, not sure much about the others. If you need low budget supplies, freecycle is amazing. I have also considered making a coop out of cob (which is like adobe) for cost and insulation reasons.
  7. Nostalchic

    Nostalchic Songster

    The very best thing you can do if your property allows for it is to have your coop face directly south, with windows on your south wall and a bit of an overhang. This allows you to get lots of sun into the coop in the winter, to maximize light and solar gain, but minimizes direct sun in the summertime. The typical old fashioned shed-roof coop works well, with the tall, windowed side to the south and sloping down to the north wall. The wind and weather tends to come from the north, northwest, sometimes northeast here, so that gives good protection on that side. Ours doesn't have any windows on the north side, but does have some ventilation openings up high on the north which can be closed off in winter.
    We're in the Ft. Collins/Loveland area and, honestly, if you can possibly insulate your coop, you should. If you are getting cold hardy breeds (lots of feathers and very little comb) they'll probably be ok - they won't DIE without insulation, but you'll get some frostbitten combs and the cold will stress your birds. We insulated ours, and it stayed pretty comfortable this last winter - which was pretty cold! - and I rarely had to even worry about frozen waterers. And it stays cooler in this hot weather, too. Good luck!
    PS: my neighbor insulated her coop this winter when she saw how much more comfortable it was in mine, and just put thick plastic sheeting over it, which worked perfectly well. We got all our windows and doors, and lots of the building materials from the recycled construction stores around here, and you can even find leftover insulation from building sites, so it takes more time, but doesn't need to cost a ton.
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2010
  8. 4theloveofhens

    4theloveofhens Songster

    May 26, 2010

    I am in fort collins as well!!
  9. BensHens

    BensHens Hatching

    Mar 29, 2012
    New Mexico
    My Coop

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