Sorry if this is a repeat

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by 3bayponies, Mar 31, 2011.

  1. 3bayponies

    3bayponies New Egg

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    Mar 30, 2011
    I have been reading thru lots of great posts, but so far haven't found exactly what I am looking for. My chickens live in my orchard, about a 1/4 acre which also serves as a daily dog run for 3 dogs. Our big dog lives in there at night as well. So far the two chickens have been doing great there and the only housing they have had is a small nest box with a roof that sits on cinder blocks. Our big dog has recently figured out she likes fresh eggs, so she has been eating them rather than us. I want to build a small chicken house preferably portable that will get them up off the ground where she can't get to the eggs. Also we have baby chickies in the house so our flock is going from 2 to 8. How much house do I need to build for 8 hens? I have a picture in my mind of what I want but not exactly sure how big it needs to be. It would be used strictly for sleeping and laying as my hens have a nice orchard to live in. I have a small covered dog run to put the babies in when they go out and I figured I would put the old nest box in there till they are ready to go out with the grown up hens.
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    Feb 5, 2009
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    More significant than the orchard is your climate. If you have lots of snow on the ground in winter, so that they will want to stay in for weeks, you will need a lot more room than in a warmer climate.
     
  3. PapaChaz

    PapaChaz Overrun With Chickens

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    almost everything you'll read here will go with a minimum of 4 sq ft per bird for inside the coop, and 10 sq ft per bird outside the coop. that's minimums, like dawn said, if climate dictates they'll be inside for longer periods of time, you'll want to go larger inside. although my girls didn't hesitate to go outside when we got snow in december, and twice in jan here in nw ga. and they don't care if it's raining or not, they'll go right outside if i open the pop doors!
     
  4. 3bayponies

    3bayponies New Egg

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    Mar 30, 2011
    We get snow a couple times a year that usually melts within a day. I notice my chickens were out and about even in the snow and rain even thought they had food under their shelter. I always thought chickens stayed in in the cold..lol These are my first chickens, can you tell? So about 32 sq ft for 8 hens?
     
  5. PapaChaz

    PapaChaz Overrun With Chickens

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    yeah you'd want at least 32 sq ft for 8 hens, but you will probably get better at your chickenmath as you go along, you better build it bigger! [​IMG]
     

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