Stairs or a ramp for chuckens?

chaschkn

In the Brooder
5 Years
Mar 23, 2014
15
2
26
South Carolina
Question: I am almost finished building my coop/run enclosure, but I need some advice before proceeding. Should I build a ramp and teach the ducks to go up it, or build some stairs and let the chickens hop up?

Background: The coop is raised 2 feet and is in a very secure run which is in a very secure backyard. Coop is 6.5' x 4' (and 4 to 5 feet tall inside), run is 12' x 6.5' (and 6 to 7 feet tall inside). Poop door is ~14" x 18" (can't remember exact width) and ramp would have at most a 2 foot drop over 7 feet (would take up length of run); prefer a 6 foot board dropping 2 feet with little braces for stepping. I have five chickens and two ducks currently, all under five weeks old. Three chicks are a barnyard blend (RIR + Buff Orpington), two chicks are Americanas, one [huge] pekin that is female (quacks), and one black swedish whose gender is unknown. If either is male, they won't be sleeping in the coop with the chicks.

Reading the forums, it seems some folks are divided on whether ducks can go up ramps, and I figured I could just cut to the chase and build stairs instead. I am going to use the run as a daytime hangout until I finish the coop (still needs inside work and paint). Need to get those ducks out of the brooder.

Thanks in advance for the advice.


(This picture shows the general layout, I have since closed it in with hardware cloth).
 

chfite

Songster
8 Years
Jun 7, 2011
2,171
111
214
Taylors, SC
I would prefer a ramp. Add some cleats, if the birds slip so that they cannot climb. My chickens readily go up and down a smooth ramp 8 feet long rising 2 feet. Usually, they fly up to the top of the ramp, but they can and do walk up and down.

Chris
 

chaschkn

In the Brooder
5 Years
Mar 23, 2014
15
2
26
South Carolina
I just wanted to post an update and say that I ended up making a ramp out of 2 1x4x6s with small 1x2 cleats every foot or so with 30% incline (~ 2 foot rise over 6 feet). The ducks were scared to go up this ramp since they would have a tendency to fall off, which meant every night I would come out and put them up. Then I attached a 1x6 to each side to give it some railing (all was painted with roof sealer and is the whole ramp is removable for cleaning). The pekin took one day to figure this out, though the black swede took about 3 days. They now go up and down at their leisure.

 

RJSorensen

Chicken George
5 Years
Jun 19, 2014
1,069
209
138
Northern Utah's, Cache Valley
That is a very nice ramp indeed. I had not thought to put 'sides' on one. Looks to be just what the doctor ordered for your needs. Thank you for the idea and thanks for posting the solution you chose to your problem. I am sure others will enjoy this as well.

Best to you and your birds,

RJ
 
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