Proud, First Time Chicken Owner!

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by imagery, Nov 16, 2015.

  1. imagery

    imagery New Egg

    Oct 4, 2015
    After months of lurking and doing research (mostly from this site), I decided to jump in and become a proud chicken owner!

    I built our coop from scratch. I looked online, but just couldn't find anything reasonable that looked like it could withstand the Colorado Plains wind, sun and winters. There of course were coops that would, but they were way too expensive.


    I put a lot of thought into the design. Decided on a mono-pitched roof (easier to build), chicken door down below (don't have to worry about wind entering), service door in the back, and external chicken nesting boxes. The floor plan is 4x8 feet, which should be plenty of room for 6 chickens. I did insulate the walls, but not the roof. I did this mostly for the summer heat. I used playground sand inside since it has a pretty good thermal insulation. I also read it evaporates water better? Kitty litter scooper makes cleaning the coop quite easy. There is straw and wood mulch in the nesting boxes, though.

    I think I'm OK on ventilation, but I'm going to keep an eye on it. I've got a roof mushroom vent, the 18"x18" hatch below and the side vent just under the south side eave. The coop faces southeast to get a good amount of winter sun, which means the back of the coop (low roof side) faces northwest (where much of the ferocious winter winds come from). I just put up the tarp along the north facing side of the chicken run as a wind break. It'll get its first good test tomorrow as a pretty big winter storm is supposed to barrel through with 50 mph winds. [​IMG]

    We do live behind open space, so predators are a real threat. There are Foxes, Coyotes and Hawks in the area. Decided to go with welded wire instead of chick wire for this reason. Our cattle dog may help keep the foxes away, but she doesn't like the coyotes at all (btw: she gets along great with the chickens).


    This picture doesn't show it, but the "chicken hydrator" is now wrapped in heat tape and insulation. I'm hoping that will stop it from freezing. If it doesn't, I'll have to come up with something else.

    We got 6 pullets from Big R back in August and they have probably quadrupled in size since then. To be perfectly honest, I don't know what kind they are. [​IMG] I tried figuring it out by looking online, but there are sooooo many breeds!


    We're raising the chickens for organic, pasture eggs and to teach our kids how to raise their own food. It's been a fun adventure so far, and I can't wait until we start getting eggs. Maybe in February?
  2. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
    Very nice job[​IMG]. Do you have a wire apron around the bottom of the run, to keep diggers from getting in? I would also suggest backing your wire with 1/2" hardware
    cloth around the perimeter of your fence and up about 18" from ground -to keep critters from reaching parts of your birds and biting them off. Chickens seem to like sitting or laying against a fence and duh! seem too stupid to move away even when something is gnawing on them.
  3. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
    Oops missed the part where I say "Welcome to Backyard chickens." Have you visited the Learning Center, it's a great way to start a chicken education.

    If you post photos of your flock at "what breed or gender is this." they will be able to ID your breeds for you.
  4. N F C

    N F C doo be doo be doo Premium Member Project Manager

    Dec 12, 2013
  5. 7littlegirls

    7littlegirls Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 18, 2015
    Long Island NY
    Hi :frow welcome to BYC :cd nice job on the coop!
  6. theoldchick

    theoldchick The Chicken Whisperer

    May 11, 2010
    [​IMG] Nice job!
  7. gander007

    gander007 Chicken Obsessed

    Alright [​IMG] great to have you joining the BYC flock [​IMG]

    Very nice coop, great job [​IMG]

    How are the predators in your area ?? [​IMG]
  8. imagery

    imagery New Egg

    Oct 4, 2015
    I anchored the welded wire with metal landscaping stakes, but you're right. I better l extend the wire down a few inches or put in an apron. Wouldn't take that much to dig under the wire.

  9. BantamFan4Life

    BantamFan4Life LOOK WHAT YOU MADE ME DO. Premium Member

    Jun 15, 2012
    My Coop
    Welcome to BYC! I'm glad you joined us! :)
  10. NickyKnack

    NickyKnack Love is Silkie soft!

    Welcome to BYC and the coop! There's a lot of great peeps here! Feel free to ask lots of questions. But most of all, make yourself at home. I'm so glad you decided to joined the BYC family. I look forward to seeing you around BYC. What a wonderful and gorgeous coop you have for your girls. :love

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