...so we lifted a building up and moved it down the road.

my sunwolf

7 Years
Apr 22, 2012
Southwest Virginia
My Coop
My Coop
I just wanted to chronicle and share the story of getting our chicken coop from neighbors down the road, with the help of family and friends.

Our neighbors down the road had an extra building on their property that they wanted to get rid of, since they saw it as an eyesore. It had previously been used as a guest house. When we told our close neighbors D and M about it, they got excited and decided they were going to get in on the project, but we couldn't seem to make the timing work, since everyone had jobs they had to get to.

Then, one day, I came back from the pasture to find this pulling into my front yard:

D had jacked up the building, drove his trailer under it, jacked it down, and secured it. Then he drove it a mile down our hilly, winding, country road.

The shed, trailer, and truck combo stayed parked in our yard for a good month or so before we could figure out how to proceed.

It was decided that we were going to do it right and not cut any corners on the foundation of this thing. This was partially because we were going to be amazing, but partially because the building's bases were rotting off and so there were no solid corners that we could just set onto a few concrete blocks and call it a day.

No, we did it the hard and expensive way (both of which I now deeply regret). We dug a trench, made it level, and began pouring mortar, laying blocks, and generally doing a lot of work. Turns out just the slightest incline can make leveling a building something extremely tricky. We could not have done this part without D and my grandfather's building knowledge. Did I mention this was the worst birthday present ever? I probably did the least work on this part of the project as I was in a foul mood.

At the end of the day, everyone had beers and chatted and then drove home to their respective houses. We were tired.

A few weeks later, D drove up while I was cleaning out the currently-in-use chicken shed. He decided that that day, with some railroad ties, a truck, jacks, and magical tightening belt things, we were going to slide the shed into place.

It took us all day. The building almost fell on its face multiple times. It was an extremely disturbing experience using huge, thick boards to literally lift and pry and scoot a building onto its foundation. But we did it.

Then the bolts got screwed in and we were ready to go.

The inside was a little bit of a mess after the move.

But it was a beautiful little room.

Some of the side paneling had been removed in order to transport it, so parts of the outside were bare, exposed wood.

I ripped up the carpet and put down linoleum.

Finally, the house was ready for chickens:

At first, I used it as just another chicken coop, since we already had a few structures on the property.

But I soon discovered that my currently-in-use chicken coop would make an incredible goat barn... and this new moved shed would make a perfect coop for the entirety of my main egg-laying flock.

So we made the move. It was a little rough on the girls to be introduced to each other so suddenly, but I made sure to add plenty of perching space, hiding space, and scratching space.

The girls love the wooden nest boxes much better than their old metal ones:

I also built a lofted space were they can roost, scratch, or just hang out. This space actually adds another 20 square feet to the coop dimensions, as well as creating a level were less dominant girls can retreat to when the more dominant ones start picking on them, especially since they are locked into this space until they can remember it as home.

That brings the total square footage to 114, making it the perfect coop for 28 hens, but still a little tight with 30.

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