Poop board or hammock or deep bedding?

greenwos

Songster
Oct 23, 2020
56
192
106
Northern Ontario, Canada
My Coop
My Coop
We are pretty much done building our coop for now, but was hoping for input on the possibility of adding in a poop board or hammock. Here is my coop page. We are planning on starting with 4 birds, looking at Buff & Lavender Orp., Columbian Rock, RIR, Maran, and/or Wyondotte. We'll decide when we order!

This is the interior:
West wall (with nest boxes and main pop door):
84B6CB96-0C92-4DE0-B075-0A19CB337E41.jpeg

East wall (with clean out door and extra pop door for future use):
4741293E-EBFF-436B-ACF6-260AC87873AB.jpeg


Space available:

Top of pop door to top of wall: 29"
Back wall to window: 29"
(identical dimensions on the east wall above the clean out door)
The overall width of the coop is: 41" wide x 88" deep.

I would really like for the main roost to be at the north end of the coop as this is where they will have the most protection from the ventilation.
We live in a cold climate and I discovered the ease of cleaning frozen poop from the hammock/board too late, or I would have changed things around. I had originally planned for deep bedding, so the openings are 9" off the floor.

What would you do? Do I have any hope or am I simply SOL?
 

cavemanrich

Addict
7 Years
Apr 6, 2014
18,152
64,639
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Melrose Park Illinois
Build a Poop board shelf, on north wall all the way to the window. Then build your roost on top of the poop tray, elevated about 8 inches.
Your chickens will be out of draft currents even if the pop door is not closed.
Your poop board should have a vertical 2 x 4 on the open end, (end not against wall) to keep your granular medium contained. I suggest using Sweet PDZ if you can get it. Not sure what is available to you in feed stores, of farm supply stores.
Use a kitty litter scoop to sift out the gumdrops every so often. Use deep bedding still, as some gumdrops will end up on floor regardless. The night-time droppings will be captured by the poop boards.

Your coop is not too tall inside, (I estimate 60 inches, as per your stated 29 inch above pop door-ceiling distance) so I know you will have to bend over to walk around inside. (unless you are a short in height person) That is still fine as long as you are comfortable with it.
A question about the roof .. Is there sufficient overhang outside where the ventilation is, to keep out rain and snow from blowing inside??

Your poop tray, shelf will serve an additional service of being the landing place when chickens fly up to roost. They would first land on edge of tray, and then make that short hop onto the roost. I also suggest using a natural tree branch about 3 inch diameter for your roost bar. Make sure there are no sharp knots that would injure chickens' feet. Sand if necessary. Natural branches with bark still on them , are my choice for my chickens. Chickens also do like them over the flat areas. 3 inch diameter is about correct. It allows easy navigation for the hens on roost.
Ask anything else you are not sure of or need advice on. :thumbsup

Wishing you best,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,:highfive:
 

hayley3

Crowing
14 Years
Aug 16, 2007
2,072
1,956
446
Southern Indiana
I also suggest using a natural tree branch about 3 inch diameter for your roost bar. Make sure there are no sharp knots that would injure chickens' feet. Sand if necessary. Natural branches with bark still on them , are my choice for my chickens. Chickens also do like them over the flat areas. 3 inch diameter is about correct.
I made my roosts from nice, thick lovely branches and gave them 8 of them to choose from, yet they preferred to roost on the 2x4 divider (2" edge up), that was in the stall. Not once in 13 years did they roost on those branches and they were at different heights to choose from. :th
 

cavemanrich

Addict
7 Years
Apr 6, 2014
18,152
64,639
1,317
Melrose Park Illinois
I made my roosts from nice, thick lovely branches and gave them 8 of them to choose from, yet they preferred to roost on the 2x4 divider (2" edge up), that was in the stall. Not once in 13 years did they roost on those branches and they were at different heights to choose from. :th
There may be multiple reasons for that.
Here is a link to a post about roosts. @aart said it quite well.:thumbsup
https://www.backyardchickens.com/threads/proper-design-of-roost-bars.1197058/post-23176470

Read the complete thread and make your own decisions. :old :idunno
 

greenwos

Songster
Oct 23, 2020
56
192
106
Northern Ontario, Canada
My Coop
My Coop
Your coop is not too tall inside, (I estimate 60 inches, as per your stated 29 inch above pop door-ceiling distance) so I know you will have to bend over to walk around inside. (unless you are a short in height person) That is still fine as long as you are comfortable with it.
A question about the roof .. Is there sufficient overhang outside where the ventilation is, to keep out rain and snow from blowing inside??
Yes, the lowest part is about 55”, so not very tall.
We built a covered run, so the west side with the predominant winds is fine. I’m planning on building a Bermuda shutter type thing on the east side.
Thank you for your help!
 

Stephanie8806

Songster
Feb 18, 2019
495
619
191
Central Washington State
We built a poop board for our girls and I have had ZERO second thoughts. We live in a cold climate as well. I actually used a precut section of kitchen counter from Lowe’s... nothing fancy, like the cheap stuff you’d find in an apartment, but it’s super sturdy, moisture proof, and smooth for poop scraping.

I got a 6’ long section for $62. Built legs on it with the 2”x4”s and the roosts just come straight up from there. I sprinkle sweet PDZ and diatomaceous Earth over the board after I scoop it, and that helps cut down on the poop adhering from the board as well. If you have a wood burning fireplace, wood ash works well too. We only need to scoop every few days, once we start to be able to smell it. The premade counter piece also has a little 2-3” backsplash attached. Easy to scoop back with a flat blade shovel and not just push the poop against the wall or over the edge.

Cleanup literally takes less than 5 minutes. 2-3 times a week. And the bedding on the floor of the coop stays SO clean. We live in a dry climate, our chickens have a run, and the also free range. So we literally only need to change out the pellets/shavings 3 or 4 times a year. In no small part, thanks to the poop board.
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium Feather Member
9 Years
Nov 27, 2012
100,657
143,743
1,867
SW Michigan
My Coop
My Coop
I would really like for the main roost to be at the north end of the coop
Yes, the lowest part is about 55”, so not very tall.
Can you walk in there to clean?
41" wide is just a bit smaller than the recommended 12" of roost length per bird,
but the board itself will reduce that requirement.
 

Tervish

Chirping
Jul 8, 2020
39
111
99
SW WA, PNW
I LOVE LOVE LOVE my poop board! I have 6 hens, it takes very little time to clean, and I can't imagine all that mess on my wooden floor even with the shavings. With a dirt floor I could see doing deep litter maybe, but prefer what I have.

My coop interior is 48" wide by 72" deep from the door. My tray is just above the nest boxes (22" or so) and roosts are 8" above the board and 11" from the back wall and from each other. I'd recommend at least 6" of poop board past the front roost. Also thanks to an excellent suggestion from this forum, my poop tray slides on wall rail supports. I can easily lift the roost boards out. To clean, I lift the front roost and place it on the back one, then pull the board forward about a foot and I can easily reach every inch of the board to clean poops out of the PDZ.

Here is a picture to show better than my words lol. You don't have much space under your windows so the roosts could be attached to your board instead.

Edit: Now that I have looked harder at your coop page, maybe you could put in a sliding poop tray, and just slide it in the back half for roosting, and pull it to your cleanout door for cleaning.
 

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