Space questions

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by BuilderGal, Mar 18, 2012.

  1. BuilderGal

    BuilderGal Out Of The Brooder

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    Ok, I've heard that it's best for chickens to have at least four sq ft minimum in the hen house. But I've also heard that they are fine with 2 sq feet each. The main concern I've heard is that they will get bored and peck each other if they don't have enough space. I would like to give 10 sq ft of run space per bird, and am also planning on building an additional movable run. I might make it to attach to the main run for extra space. I am planning on roofing the whole of the main run, so that they can be out in inclement weather. If they have run space available at all times during the day, then can I give them only 2-3 square feet of coop space? We are getting particularly docile breeds, and I'm praying none of them will aggressive individuals.
    I am building in multiples of 4', due to the common length of pallets and cull lumber from Home Depot (though I am starting to doubt if it is really cheaper). I have a few 5' boards, but am not sure I will find enough to do anything with.
    Also, does anyone know of an inexpensive, weather proof, low/no-maintenance roofing? I like Sun-Tuf, but it is rather expensive and I am not sure how to install corrugated roofing.
    Any tips on how to make a slanted roof would be greatly appreciated. [​IMG]
     
  2. rosebuddhorse

    rosebuddhorse New Egg

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    i cut post frame at 4 feet and the other side 3 feet build frame when you getto the side were the post one higher and lower that will make the slant thet you need
     
  3. mikecnorthwest

    mikecnorthwest Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My Coop
    Check my BYC page... click on the link below. You can see my coop dimensions and square footage per hen. Basically, 2 to 3 sq. ft. per hen is fine in my opinion, especially with the added run space.
     
  4. RonC

    RonC Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think basically the question on space in the coop depends on your climate and how much time they will spend locked inside during inclimate weather. The less time locked in the coop the less room needed to a point. Having the covered run in a moderate climate they wouldn't need as much room in the coop. If they are locked inside for days at a time then the coop will need more room per bird.
     
  5. BuilderGal

    BuilderGal Out Of The Brooder

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    Rosebuddhorse, did you cut the ends of the posts to the angle of the slant of the roof? That is what I am thinking of doing, but I am not sure what method i want to use to figure that out.
    milkecnorthwest, thank you. Your coop is similar to what we are thinking, but with only half the height. I was told on my last post that 4 square feet per bird was the least I wanted to do. I was planning on building to that size, but have mainly found only 4 ft lengths to build with. [​IMG] I am having trouble thinking of a way to get a bigger coop with such a small length.
    I was wondering if there have been any problems with giving them a smaller space. How long have you had your chickens in that coop on your page? Do you let them out to free range or be in a larger space often? Have you had any problems with pecking or aggression?
    I need to get started soon with what I have, but I don't want to have to redo anything or regret some part of the design later.
    And thank you all. Your input is greatly appreciated. [​IMG]
     
  6. mikecnorthwest

    mikecnorthwest Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My Coop
    The first batch of hens were allowed to roam the backyard. The second batch we're on now are being confined to the new attached run that we built. The 4 hens we have now would also do fine in just the coop without the attached run but I had the room so I went ahead and made the run.

    The only time they spend in the house portion of the coop is to sleep or lay an egg. That's why I believe less than 4 sq. ft. per bird is fine. My current 4 hens have 3 sq. ft. and the first batch of 5 had 2.5 sq. ft. and there were no issues with aggression or anything else.
     
  7. BuilderGal

    BuilderGal Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks. [​IMG]
    What are the dimensions of your new run?
     
  8. mikecnorthwest

    mikecnorthwest Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My Coop
    Roughly 6 1/2 ft by 11 1/2 ft.
     
  9. WI FarmChick

    WI FarmChick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    BuilderGal

    I too am working on my new coop. I have the bumps and bruises to prove it! Lol
    I agree with RonC about climate and space. Are design is from the 1910-20ish era It's an open air coop. We also decided to raise our coop off the ground 21/2 feet,

    So the girls will be able to get under it in winter which doubles the space for them.
    (or if need be I have too and also no rats or mice will be able to make their nests there)
    The run will be 20'x50' and surrounds the coop. we are also going to block off 2 or 3 sides of the underside with bales of straw or removable panels for winter weather. (not sure which yet)
    Our coop will have 36 ladies and is 10'x16' we figured 4sq (give or take a little) per lady.

    Low cost materials.......We have a Habitat for Humanity Resale shop here. I just picked up 3 windows for my coop that are 40" x 50" for free need a little fixing but will work great.
    They were in the free bin outside.
    I also picked up a $13.50 steel door with a window in it. Cheep! got a love it! Lol I did notice they had lots of extra shingles there. miss matched. might even have a partial roll of tar paper.

    Never know where you will find treasures for Cheap.
     
  10. BuilderGal

    BuilderGal Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks, y'all!
    Farmchick, I did get some lumber from the cull section in Home depot and old pallets (though not as much usable from the pallets). We also have some old windows from from when we replaced ours a year or so ago. I am hoping to be able to use one for light, but this is my first real building project, so we'll see how it goes. I have been keeping tabs on Craigslist for materials, and am hoping I won't have to buy chicken/hardware wire. But so far no luck.
    My frame is half done, and my goal is to get it stable and out of the garage as soon as possible. Should have started it on the site, but the garage seemed more level at the time. (it really slopes a little) :/
     

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