I am building a roost for 42 hens. I have looks at several designs and have pretty much settled on one, but I wanted to run this by you all to get your opinions and see if you have had experience with the "pit" design. I am including pics from a site that uses a McMurray design (I believe). My coop is 6.5'X32'. I want to put the pit in the front corner or the coop so I can get to it to clean it out from an outside cleanout door. I plan for it to be 4.5'WX10'LX2'H. I Plan on using 2X4 rungs every 18" running the short distance (4.5'). Based on my reading and web searches, the allowance for each chicken should be 10" in width. Also, based on a distance of 120" (10'), there would be 6 rungs. This should hold 32.4 chickens. Since I have 42, this to be is a bit of a problem. Some of my chickens are notably smaller than the others and I was wondering if that would allow all 42 to fit in this space, or would I need to add additional roost space in another part of the coop (which would somewhat defeat the purpose of having a "pit " that I can clean fron the outside). I have: (6) Araucanas 4 lbs (5) Australorps 6.5 lbs (5) Brahmas 9.5 lbs (6) Buttercups 5 lbs (5) Delawares 6.5 lbs (5) Dominiques 5 lbs (5) Orpingtons 8 lbs (5) Wyandottes 6.5 lbs (Weights are adult weights based on the APA Standard of Perfectioin 2001 Edition) I of course, could do the stair-step design and then have the rungs 12" apart, but I really wanted to use the "pit" idea. I was hoping that you could help me with my decision as I wanted to build the roost today. Here is the site that I got the info and pics from . The description on how it is meant to work is: Details of the droppings pit: The dropping pit is constructed in such a way that all support 2x4s are outside the pit, giving the pit smooth walls for ease of cleaning out. The top of the dropping pit (the roosting bars and 1" x 2" wire mesh) is made in two pieces as shown on the photographs. This also facilitates cleaning. One bale of shaving goes into the dropping pit and one on the floor of the coop and nest boxes. In practice, the dropping pit is shoveled out from the outside through doors as shown in the McMurray plans. Then the shavings that were on the floor of the coop get shoveled into the dropping pit and clean shavings are put on the floor. Actual Site - Nice site but it takes a long time to load. Beautiful coop!!! http://world.std.com/~kcl/chickencoop.html In the pics, you can see doors to the outside for cleaning out the pit. The last pic shows the outside view of the coop and you can see the access doors at the bottom to the pit for cleanout. Almost forgot to ask 2 things... Will the chickens need a ramp to get up to the roosts? Does it hurt the chickens to jump/fly down from 2'? Al always, thank you in advance for your help.