So since size DOES big?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by brownfarms, Jun 30, 2008.

  1. brownfarms

    brownfarms Songster

    Jun 24, 2008
    San Diego Area, CA
    I just read the previous post regarding coop regrets. We are in the design phase now. I have 50 chickens. The coop will be for roosting and egg laying but they will be out during the day. Snow isn't an issue, I'm in San Diego. We were thinking about a 12x8 but reading your posts I'm thinking it's too small. What is the formula? Who has 50 chickens out there?
  2. shmooborp

    shmooborp artistic fowlism

    i belive its like 3square feet per chicken... so 50 chickens sould need to be kinda big.. like the size of mabye a large shed. but thats if they are in there full time.. if its just at night.. them u might want to add a few feet just incase.. [​IMG] who knows... u might get more [​IMG]
  3. ChickenCop

    ChickenCop Songster

    My chicken house is 12 x 16 with about 45 birds in it and I wish I had more 2 cents;)
  4. Cetawin

    Cetawin Chicken Beader

    Mar 20, 2008
    NW Kentucky
    The 'formula' is 4 sq ft per bird for those not confined 10 Sq ft per bird for those confined.

    But, I think alot depends on your chickens, the sizes and such too...Brahmas and jersey giants need far more space than say a they are much bigger birds usually.

    4 sq ft per bird or 200 sq ft in your case would be great.
  5. dixygirl

    dixygirl Songster

    May 14, 2008
    Wow that is a 20'x10' shed you need or a 15'x14' would also equal 200 sqare feet.. And that is not allowing room for them to have any babies.

    The run would need to be 20'x25 at least.
    Gosh you have so many chickens!
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2008
  6. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Crowing

    May 7, 2007
    Forks, Virginia
    You need at least 4 sq ft of space in the hen house per pbird = 200sq ft.

    Outside run is figured at the minimum of 10 sq ft per bird - 500 sq ft.

    It is better to have too much space than to cram them in. Over crowding causes pick, pecking and all sorts of troubles.
  7. brownfarms

    brownfarms Songster

    Jun 24, 2008
    San Diego Area, CA
    Ok twice as big...oh what fun.

    ChickenCop - How much more room? 16x16?...24x16 What are your reasons for wanting/needing more room?

    Their enclosed run will be about 20x10 but their free range area is like 50x40. The enclosed area is just for early...early in the morning before we open the yard to them.

    Oh and dixygirl...NO MORE! NO BABIES!! I can't imagine having more than 50 chickens. LOL.
  8. doctinker

    doctinker Hatching

    Jul 6, 2008
    We are using half of a 12x8 shed for 30 hens. We also have a large run with a tarp covered 8x16 canopy attached to the shed. The hens spend the day outside (under the canopy when there is snow on the ground) and only go in to lay their eggs and to go to bed. They seem to be fine with the amount of indoor space, and we have put up enough roosting bars to accommodate them.

  9. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude

    I will have close to 50 chickens in an 8x20 coop. My coop is divided into 8x12 and 8x8 sections and on the 8x12 side, I have about 25 birds. That is plenty in there. I'd hate to cram twice that amt in the 8x12 side. The 8x8 is currently holding a bunch of 11 week old chicks that will become part of the flock when the door between is opened up at the proper age.
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2008
  10. Davaroo

    Davaroo Poultry Crank

    Feb 4, 2007
    Leesville, SC
    Here's what the 4 sq ft rule means in practical terms. Newbies take note.
    Get 16 floor tiles and lay them out, 4 to a side, in a square. That is 4 sq ft. Now put a 5 gal bucket in that area. That represents a full grown hen.
    Or just go in the kitchen or other area and mark this off.

    What you are seeing is the total indoor living space you are affording an active creature with a high metabolic rate, one who poops everywhere constantly. 70% of what goes in a chicken comes back out the rear.

    If the coop is only for roosting and laying and you boot them out after sunrise as you should, then okay, that'll do. Youll still be busy cleaning up after them, but it'll do. Offer less at your peril (and theirs).

    Outside? 10 sq ft is hardly enough. Sorry to you formulaic types, but, well - there it is. Whatever you think you have available outside, triple it and then add 25% more as saftey margin. And then look for more.

    MP said this:
    It is better to have too much space than to cram them in. Over crowding causes pick, pecking and all sorts of troubles.

    The "all sorts of trouble" part is a vague way of saying "the various maladies and health risks which are filth borne" (read the word "filth" as shi*T)

    Wanna see what chickens should have in the backyard environment? Go here:
    While youre looking at this, get a good look at his attached run. I make it to be about 10x10 or 100 square feet; that's 2.5X the recommended allowance. He has only 4 birds in there - take a close look at the condition of the ground inside that run.​
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2008

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