Roost addition conundrum

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by 3520, Sep 15, 2016.

  1. 3520

    3520 Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 30, 2016
    Long story short - bought a tiny 3ft x 2.5ft x2.5ft coop with attached nesting box when we brought our chicks home. We were planning to free range them in the back yard so minimal time in the coop. Realized it would be waaay too small for winter in MI and built a 4 x 8 x 5 ft tall coop with a little tunnel out the side attaching it to the original coop. Now our 5 chickens are almost full grown and they are cramped in the roost (in the small coop) and one always sleeps in the nesting box. So, I'm building a roost addition on the other side and of course midway through the project I am second guessing the size. It is 4 ft wide x 21 inches deep with a roof sloping from 24" to 21". Was planning to put a 2 x 4 roost bar down the middle, wood shavings on the floor for easy cleaning & soft landings, and cut a chicken size hole into the larger coop. 4 ft should be plenty wide, but will this be big enough at 21 in front to back for the birds to roost? We have a mixed flock, largest is an Austrolorp smallest an Amber Links. Would appreciate some advice.
     
  2. Leigti

    Leigti Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Do you have any photos? That might help people understand more what you're doing.
     
  3. 3520

    3520 Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 30, 2016
    [​IMG]
    Hopefully that will show the pic? Purchased coop on left, built large middle coop, not yet attached roost addition on the right.
     
  4. chickens really

    chickens really Overrun With Chickens

    That actually looks good...Now too wait and see how well it works for your current flock...

    We all make changes to our set ups, flock...What was working one day...Might not be the case tomorrow???

    All you can do is try...Best of luck!
     
  5. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    My Coop
    Pic of roost inside larger coop. please?
    I don't get the "21 in front to back for the birds to roost?"

    1 foot of roost length per bird is a pretty good 'rule of thumb'...they can sleep on less but need that extra room to do the Roost Time Rumba every night.
    1 foot away from wall, with as much head room above as possible....any venting should be as far above as possible too.
     
  6. 3520

    3520 Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 30, 2016
    Thanks for the info! There isn't a roost in the big coop, it's more like a small enclosed run with deep litter so I don't want them sleeping in there too much poop under the roost. They currently roost in the small structure you see on the left side. It's a little different setup than I've seen but we get cold snowy winters so even free range chickens need a bigger shelter than just a roost, but I didn't want to build a huge coop. Anyway, you say 12 in from the wall for a roosting bar which is what I needed to know. It will be a little tight but the smaller space should also be warmer for them sleeping on cold winter nights. Head room should be ok, about 18 in above. I'll post a pic when I'm done!
     
  7. 3520

    3520 Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 30, 2016
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    So...here is the new roost installed. Pic on the bottom shows the whole coop, the roost addition is on the right. Close ups of the added part and inside. The chickens did not want to roost there, they kept going over to the old roost! So...we have converted the first addition into a nesting box and I have another addition partially assembled in my garage. It will replace the current roost on the left. It should be better size for our 5 hens, cleaner with deep litter over a dirt floor, and nice and warm/dry for the winter. I'm also adding a window to the nesting box part as I think it's a little too dark in there. I am learning when it comes to chicken coops there is a lot of improvisation!
     

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