Rookie Coop Building Mistakes?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by KimKimWilliamso, Mar 20, 2012.

  1. KimKimWilliamso

    KimKimWilliamso Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 11, 2012
    Nanton, AB, Canada
    We are new to chickens, and have our 4 little chicks in a brooder in doors for the time being. We are starting the coop this coming weekend. Im curious as to what some "rookie" moves would be. You know, things we will regret later on down the road, things we wish we had known, etc.
  2. KimKimWilliamso

    KimKimWilliamso Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 11, 2012
    Nanton, AB, Canada
    I should ad what our plans are to give you an idea as to if we are headed in the right direction.

    Our Coop will be located in a pen/run that is attached to our shop. It runs the length of the shop, at about 55feet and is flanked by the shop and thick bushes. It is about 25 feet wide and 7 Feet High. It is made of thick gauged chicken wire and wood planks, with an electric fence. The wire is barried 5 feet down and set in concrete.

    The Coop will be about 6x6 (Id go larger but Im worried about them being able to keep warm in the winter months) and about 8 Feet High including stilts. It will have a motion sensor on the outside, and 2 electrical outlets on the inside for water heaters in the winter.
  3. ear019

    ear019 Out Of The Brooder

    Jul 18, 2010
    Huntsville, TX
    I'll be interested in this post because my dad and I are starting to plan our coop! : )
  4. LittleRedCoop

    LittleRedCoop Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 13, 2011
    When I built my first coop I didn't take ventilation into consideration. Currently I only have one small window, about 6", and a small vent on my coop. It gets very warm in there in the summer months.
    1 person likes this.
  5. WaldensRidge

    WaldensRidge Out Of The Brooder

    Dec 28, 2011
    Red Bank, TN
    Things I've learned:
    Lots of high ventilation
    Draft maintenance down low
    Design coop so it can be cleaned and sanitized easily(ie sweep out door and varnished or painted surfaces)
    Consider keeping food and water outside the coop
    Look into installing poop hammocks
    Outside/separate access for egg collection
    Consider bulk feeders and waterer systems (I like the low pressure cup systems)

    Things I wish I had done differently
    More square footage. I built an 8x8 and wish I had gone slightly bigger so I could have a interior divided off storage space for feeds, egg collection box, tools, meds, info calender, etc.

    When we were designing our coop we tried to make it as user friendly and maintenance friendly as possible. Mainly because I'm more like to clean regularly if it layed out with efficiency in mind. Good luck!
    2 people like this.
  6. crittergarden

    crittergarden Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 30, 2012
    could you post a picture link to get me started?
  7. KimKimWilliamso

    KimKimWilliamso Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 11, 2012
    Nanton, AB, Canada
    I imagine a poop hammock is fabric strung under the roosting bars?? Can you buy them somewhere, or do you have to build them? Id love a photo as well.

    Question: We planned on making one whole side wall open up on some hinges so I can easily clean the coop. I thought this was great until my husband wondered if in the winter, this would cause the coop to loose all heat everytime I open it. Anyone have any thoughts on that?

    Also, we were thinking of using linolium for the flooring, so I can easily wipe it down when needed. Of course we would have wood shavings or sand overtop of it, but just so that when we wipe it out its easier to clean. Any thoughts on this? If youve tried it, how did it work.

    I also wonder how the coops with the mesh bottoms (so poop falls out) stay warm in winter, if at all. I should ad that we are in Southern Alberta, Canada where winters get as cold as Minus 35 Degrees Celcius for days at a time.

    AND - LOL - Are glass/plastic windows necessary if we have tons of vents high up and a light fixture? Wouldnt the heat get lost through them?
  8. KimKimWilliamso

    KimKimWilliamso Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 11, 2012
    Nanton, AB, Canada
  9. Kay56

    Kay56 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 11, 2012
    I was wondering myself what a poop hammock was...thanks for the link.. as neat as it looks I think I'' stick with a poop board idea...I would be afraid the hens would decide it was a nice place to
    We are building our coop now and am using some of the ideas from this site......still unsure of everything that "needs" to be done....oh well, trial and error....better someone else's error though that i can learn from. good luck!
  10. Blarneyeggs

    Blarneyeggs Overrun With Chickens

    Oct 22, 2011
    Southeast PA
    our rookie mistake was not giving cover from rain or snow in the run. The run is completely enclosed and keeps out critters, but not the weather, we've since remedied this with a tarp, not ideal for snow, but much happier crooks when it rains.

    We DID put linoleum in our coop and I LOVE it. Much easier cleaning. Good luck to you.

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