Purina Mills Coop - Big Enough?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by MLGarber, Apr 22, 2012.

  1. MLGarber

    MLGarber Out Of The Brooder

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    Hubby and I just constructed a 4x4 purina mills coop from the plans we found online. My question is, the plans state it will hold 8 standards OR 12 bantams. It seems so small. A smarter chicken momma would have asked questions before instead of after, but such is life.

    We have 2 bantams (a silkie and a supposed RIR), 6 standards reds of various breeds/links, and one light brahma (standard size). 9 birds. They are all between 2.5 and 5 weeks old.

    As they grow, will they fit into this coop?

    Here are the plans for those who are not familiar. We modified this a little, moving the nest box lower and on a side away from the door, making the cleaning door a "french door"that opens out and not down. We even have a roost ladder from re-purposed tree fort wood, and it is 18 inches across with 4 dowels for roosting. Do they all roost all the time? We were going to try to add another roosting space, but its raining this weekend!

    Again, to summarize, 9 birds (7 full, 2 bantam). PM says this fits 8 full or 12 bantam. Is this big enough or is someone going to be left in the cold?

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    This is the link to the official Purina Mills website where you can find these plans. They are not my property. http://poultry.purinamills.com/NUTRITIONMANAGEMENT/HenHouseHutchDesign/default.aspx
     
  2. AlienChick

    AlienChick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It would comfortably hold about 4 standards or 7-8 bantams.
    If you have very cold winters where the birds will not want to go outside, then you will have an overcrowded situation if you squeeze in too many birds.
    You can get away with overcrowded spaces in mild climates where the birds are allowed to free range or have access to a large attached run area 24/7.
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  3. Back on the Farm

    Back on the Farm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That allows about 2 square feet for each chicken. Now, are they living inside the coop and a small run area? If so, then you should allow more square feet per bird. If they will spend most of their time outside, i.e... free range and/or larger run area and they will only be using the coop for nesting and roosting, it should be fine.
     
  4. MLGarber

    MLGarber Out Of The Brooder

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    They have a 12x10 (120 sq ft) run.. the coop is in there, but is 18 inches off the ground.This is a little more than 10 sq feet per bird? I was assuming they'd be in there for nesting/roosting/bad weather, but am really unfamiliar with their behaviors.
    (Its Virginia so the winters are unpredictable. Last year we had a very mild winter, and 2 years ago heavy snows and temps down to 7degrees on a few nights. Go Figure) Average Low temp is right around 27 degrees in winter. Avg High Winter temp is about 47 degrees.
     
  5. Back on the Farm

    Back on the Farm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You'll be fine. I'm in Maryland... similar climate. My girls were out in all kinds of weather last year - even with the mild winter, we still got some very cold nights/days. I use deep litter method in the coop, so when it got cold, I added more pine shavings, kept my windows closed, but the vent was open. At night, I closed them up, with vent slightly open. I never added any extra heat. All was fine.

    There are a few on the BYC that live up in very cold climates and their chickens do well. You can search the boards - tons of information. Some people provide heat in the cold temps and others do not. I don't, but I also have cold hardy breeds since I know how unpredictable the weather can be here in the good ol' Mid-Atlantic. Fortunately, you have some time to do your research since we are heading into the warmer months.
     
  6. TonySorrento

    TonySorrento Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think you will be wanting a bigger one ....
     
  7. 6chicks4us

    6chicks4us Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 20, 2012
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    I am going to get the lumber for this coop this week-end. I was wondering if it was going to be big enough for my 6 Rhode Island Reds when they are full grown. Going to add a run to it. What part of Virginia are you from?
     
  8. MLGarber

    MLGarber Out Of The Brooder

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    We are going to have 9 in there (hopefully!) But based on what it looks like now that its in place, i think 6 will fit perfectly. I'm hoping 9 isn't over-doing it.
    Check the forums on here. i know a lot of people made modifications and stuff. We changed ours around a little based on a few things i read and its location in the run. I wished i'd added a window so i can peek in without disturbing, but we can always add it later.

    We are in Chesterfield, which is west of Richmond. We have a mix of 6 RIRs and red-sex links plus a couple of bantams and a brahma. This is our first foray into chickens, so I hope it all works out. Best of luck with your build and your chicks!! I would love to know how the build goes and how your chicks adapt to it.
     
  9. pikeman94

    pikeman94 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My Coop
    If it were me I would go with a 4'x8' size coop. That will accommodate the number you are trying to put into this coop. Look at my modified design of this coop and you will see what I did.
     
  10. srd5757

    srd5757 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think it is big enough. We built the same one, and in comparison to what you can buy prefab and how many they say they can hold it is huge!
    I currently have two hens and four 11 week olds in the house and we have only had chickens since April so I'll be curious to see how winter is. But they are never in the coop during the day except to lay. Even during a nasty thunderstorm they were just huddled together under the coop. Like I said, we haven't been through a winter yet, but from what I've heard from others they still go out in the winter even when it's really cold just not as much.
    I would say wait and see if you have any problems and re-evaluate then. But that's just what I would do.
     

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