questions about my coop

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by chick rookie, Dec 1, 2013.

  1. chick rookie

    chick rookie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I still have to insulate and trim paint outside and inside walls after insulating. it's a work in progress.
    My question'S are: are my heat lamps too close or far away?
    and if I add 1 more 8 ft roost will I have enough room for 41 chickens?
    the way I want to put my poop boards in it will be 1.5" in. below the roost is that down enough?

    My coop is 8 ft long 6 ft wide and 8 ft tall in front and 6 ft in the back. In the summer we are going to put the nesting boxes in the wall so I don't have to go in to collect eggs. BTW the floor space is 8' x 6' with only food and water being on the floor o and the bottom of the ramp of course.
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    and I still have a few hens sleeping in the boxes, how do I stop that?
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

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    You don't need heat lamps for adult chickens. Actually, if the chickens get acclimated to a warm coop and you lose power, this can cause more harm than the cold would.

    Figure about 8" or 9" of roost per large fowl chicken.

    I think you would regret poop board being that close as their tail would drag in the poop, plus liquid poop would splash back up onto them.

    8' x 6' would usually be considered a coop for 12 chickens, aqs a ruleof thumb, not counting room for food and water. If you're going to keep 41 chickens in there, I wouldn't bother them about where they sleep.

    Post #13 in this thread is very good:

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/839687/beginner-flock-questions/0_20#post_12386271
     
  3. chick rookie

    chick rookie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    instead of the heat lamps what kind of lighting can I use to keep my eggs coming?
    ok better drop the poop board a few in. then... I wouldn't like poop on my tail,,, lol
    reckon the hubby will have a new winter project... building me a new coop... he will be so thrilled.... lol
    I read post 13 and it was informative thanks for all the info and feedback. Guess I have been lucky, 21 hens in the same coop for 8 mths now and not 1 problem. but my hens have 2.5 ac they get to roam around on during the day. They love scattering the horse poop around and getting the grain and bugs.
     
  4. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

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    A 40 watt bulb should be plenty. I have read that it should not be a new fluorescent one, but rather an old fashioned incandescent. I have no idea how true or important that is. -- something about the type of light, or wave length, or some such.

    You said 41 hens, not 21 hens! Glad to hear it's 21! Also, as that post points out, there are no hard and fast rules, anyway. Plus, it's the total space that matters in the end, not the coop space alone. Obviously, 2.5 acres makes a LOT of difference! If your birds are outside all day most every day, rather than stuck indoors for weeks because of deep snow, I'm sure they are fine where they are, and your poor hubby can relax, lol!
     
  5. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

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    If you can read a newspaper in the coop, you have enough light to keep them laying. 40 watts sounds like it should be plenty.

    Stopping them from sleeping in the nests might take some effort. Part of that is why they are sleeping in the nests. One possible reason is that they just got in that habit while transitioning to the roosts and just got stuck mentally. Another possible reason is that some of your hens are mean brutes on the roosts. I occasionally have some like that, especially when younger birds are involved. Those hens in the nests may be just looking for a safer place to spend the night away from a bully.

    So what can you do? First, add another roost to maybe give them some room to get away from the bully. I put in an additional roost lower than the main roosts and away from them a bit to give the chickens being picked on a safer place to go to keep them out of my nests. What you are seeing is a common problem.

    If that doesn’t work, go out after dark and take them out of the nests and put them on the roosts. As long as you keep it pretty dark so they can’t see to go back to the nests, they should stay. It shouldn’t take too long for them to get the message and go to the roosts on their own.
     
  6. chick rookie

    chick rookie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Flockwatcher: I have 21 right now but I have 20 chicks that will be here in 2 weeks, I was asking about 41 because of them when they get big enough. And I will be swapping out the lamps for lights today. Now would be a good time to do it because our days are getting in the high 40 and nights 30's, so it shouldn't make them sick. Thank you

    Ridgerunner: The ones that are still sleeping in the nest are old birds, maybe they are getting picked on so I think I will leave them alone and I'll just clean the nest daily only got 5 that do it so it wont break my back none. I think I'll go ahead and put the extra roost in anyway, just in case they would rather use it. Thank you

    You guys have been great, anything I ask I get an answer or two, and I have got alot of stuff from reading other threads as well. The coop remodel I did yesterday was because I found out (from BYC) My way SUCKED!!! lol and 'm glad too. Last night when I went to gather the eggs it was so much EASIER!!!! it was awesome... and the girls love the new roost (that ideal too came from BYC) and well it was just great. I don't dread collecting or feeding or watering ant more. cant wait to get the poop boards in... Thanks
    and just think I have been dealing with the same messed up coop for a year now, Those days are behind me now that I found all of you and this forum.
     

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