Roost bar and layer box questions!

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by MamaOwl, Mar 18, 2015.

  1. MamaOwl

    MamaOwl New Egg

    7
    0
    7
    Feb 26, 2015
    Chino Valley, AZ
    I'm in the final stages of designing my coop and I have a dumb question, round or square roosts?! I bought some 3/4" round dowl for my roosts but looking around it seems like everyone is using 2x4's. My chicks are a few weeks old and love the bamboo roosts I built for them but should I use 2x4's in the coop? When I previously worked at a wild bird rescue the round roosts were sooooo much easier to clean so I thought that it would be a better option. Also, what do you line your nest boxes with? I bought some large plastic boxes to use for the nest boxes so they're easy to clean and I was considering using some AstroTurf to line them so I can easily hose it off every few days. Ideas? Thanks!
     
  2. Kelsie2290

    Kelsie2290 True BYC Addict Premium Member

    36,684
    4,692
    566
    Feb 18, 2011
    Ohio
    Like you said, most people seem to use 2x4's wide side up (edges sanded or rounded so they are not sharp), or natural branches 2-3" in diameter are also popular. 3/4" is really too small for roosts for chickens, unless you have really tiny bantams. The 2x4's are readily available and do seem to help birds keep their feet warmer in the winter, and seem to be easier for the bigger/heavier breeds to balance on.

    And, Hello :frow and Welcome To BYC!
     
  3. MamaOwl

    MamaOwl New Egg

    7
    0
    7
    Feb 26, 2015
    Chino Valley, AZ
    Most of my chickens are bantams but I also have some turkens and Rhode Island red's. I guess I'll be returning to the hardware store again lol. Thank you! Will my bantams need something smaller or will they also be ok on the 2x4's?
     
  4. ECBW

    ECBW Chillin' With My Peeps

    812
    34
    133
    Apr 12, 2011
    NJ
    I have lumber in my coop mostly because it is easier. Also, the thought that they can relax their grip on flat and wide roosts is appealing.

    But I had some that prefered roosting in trees (rounded surfaces). They made it through the nights without falling off.
     
  5. henless

    henless Chillin' With My Peeps

    I use 2 x 4's, wide side up and large flake shavings in my nesting boxes. I tried hay, but my hens didn't like it.
     
  6. MamaOwl

    MamaOwl New Egg

    7
    0
    7
    Feb 26, 2015
    Chino Valley, AZ
    Thanks ECBW and Henless!
    We did 1x2's with our last chickens a few years ago and they seemed fine. I was thinking that chickens in the wild would have roosted in trees so it would make sense to have round roost polls lol. Is the idea of having the flat surface to keep their feet warmer in winter? We live in Northern AZ, so we don't have that many cold days, and I plan to keep a few inferred lights going in the coop during the winter anyways. Plus the coop will be insulated and should stay relatively warm.
    My chicks currently seem to have no problem on the round polls I have in there now so I'm just trying to figure out why people seem so against using them lol.
    Henless, are the shavings easy enough to clean everyday? That's what I have in my chick brooder and they've been hard to scoop the poop out of lol. I know they shouldn't poo as much in the nest boxes if they have roosts to perch on at night but I still want something easy to clean that is also comfortable for my girls.
     
  7. henless

    henless Chillin' With My Peeps

    From what I understand it's easier on the chickens to have a flat service to roost on. Their feet are not like a birds, they don't curl automatically like a bird does. I have large fowl and it seems to give them more stability to roost on the wider side.

    I don't get much poo in the nests. Every once in a while I have a bird that will poo in one. I will just get a handful of poo/shavings and throw it on the floor. Every 2 or 3 weeks I will change out the shavings and put in fresh. I do deep litter, so I just dump the shavings on the floor and add new.
     
  8. MamaOwl

    MamaOwl New Egg

    7
    0
    7
    Feb 26, 2015
    Chino Valley, AZ
    Thank you for explaining that :) I'll be doing 2x4's for the roosts. I wish I could do deep litter but I'm such a clean freak; I know it would make me crazy haha. I was hoping to do sand but I'm having a hard time locating it anywhere close to me. Chicken coop in the making! [​IMG]
     
  9. henless

    henless Chillin' With My Peeps

    I'm a little ocd, and I'm so glad I chose deep litter. The poop just disappears in it. The only poop you see is fresh ones, lol.

    I just did my first coop cleaning. I raked out all the litter 2 weeks ago, and left bare dirt floor until this past week. I raked up 5 large wheel barrows of leaves, and put them in the coop. They had a blast scattering it all out. Yesterday, I took the leaf blower and blew out all the dust/cobwebs that has accumulated over the past year. That was a mess! Dust/dirt was everywhere! Now it's ready for another year.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by