Starting a coop and would like input if you see something wrong

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by FISTfullaFLOYD, Mar 10, 2016.

  1. FISTfullaFLOYD

    FISTfullaFLOYD Out Of The Brooder

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    I'm starting the coop for the chickens and I'll post some pictures along the way. If anyone has suggestions, tips, or pointers let me know. I'd like to have the advice before I finish the project.[​IMG]
     
  2. GodofPecking

    GodofPecking Chillin' With My Peeps

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    if it is going outside, for them to live in during the night and to range out of in the daytime, I would go without the wooden platform, I'd go with old supermarket shelves or old fridge freezer shelves, they are super strong against all predators and the poop just falls through with occasional bit of a hose out. Also good to have more than one perch at the same top level. That one would fit two or three perches across the top level, you want them about 8 inch apart or so so that the bums are not aiming at the perches butt are aiming at the ground below for less mess. The multiple perches part allows them to sort out perching/pecking order WITHOUT all the flapping and falling off perches, they just chase in circles as necessary before quieting down.

    Big Big roof that overhangs every side by more than a foot and the sunny sides by more than that. If it is hot where you live, make two roof, 6 inches over one another with 6 inch open vent at the top of the top one, so sun becomes heat on the top roof which is not in any way waterproof, it's just a few extra bits of roof held up 6 inches over the real roof. The sun becomes heat and then heated air which rises up and dissipates, without getting into the coop. This is a big help in summer, it keep the chooks cool. You can see the shimmer of the hot air taking away the majority of the suns energy from the top vent of the top roof.
     
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  3. GodofPecking

    GodofPecking Chillin' With My Peeps

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    like this for hot areas. extra iron towards sun and sky keep chooks cool. allow space for air to flow between the iron


    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2016
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  4. Howard E

    Howard E Chillin' With My Peeps

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    An important consideration......where do you live......as in what is your climate? Where you go from here depends a lot on that alone.

    A good sized opening window for light and ventilation......window facing south towards winter sun. Perhaps one or more small gable type vents up high plus a small vent low. Perhaps one or two mushroom vents in the roof? One roost bar with dropping board beneath it and only one or two nest boxes beneath the dropping board (that was a traditional way of doing it in small houses). In addition to the obvious, the dropping board breaks up the circular flow of air from below and lessons the draft the birds feel in a now well ventilated house. A well ventilated house with no drafts. That is a neat trick if you can pull it off. The nest boxes beneath the dropping board (nest boxes high enough a bird on the floor cannot see in without hopping up to a perch..........prevents them from eating their own eggs), but beneath the board will appear to be a dark hiding place for the birds to hide......errrrr.....lay their eggs and elevated off the floor a bit will give them floor room beneath and a way to clean the floor beneath.

    I see a lot of people using metal for sides and roofs, but based on my experience with other animals, it causes problems. If not insulated, in cold weather moisture condenses on the INSIDE of the building to the point of dripping down. I have a horse barn and the first and only time my boarder put her horses inside the barn in the box stalls and left them there overnight (in near freezing temps) the next morning it looked like it had rained inside the building. It has un-insulated metal roof and sides. The moisture generated inside a hen house would be worse. They routinely breath harder than a couple of kids parked on the back row of the local drive-in movie theater. They wanna be dry and to do that, keep it well ventilated.

    A key point to always consider.......is this a place you would want to be cooped up for several days at a time? If not, why not and what can you do about it to make it so?
     
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  5. FISTfullaFLOYD

    FISTfullaFLOYD Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks for all the tips. I live in Las Vegas and we get 115*F in the shade. [​IMG]
     
  6. FISTfullaFLOYD

    FISTfullaFLOYD Out Of The Brooder

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    [​IMG]
     
  7. MeepBeep

    MeepBeep Chillin' With My Peeps


    I would strongly advise against this is cold and windy climates, they need ventilation but an entire grated metal floor would be a drafty nightmare, and IMO not all that good for their feet, if they end up being in there any length of time... Also if it's big enough for poop to fall through it's big enough for weasels to get through, of course predator risk is also regionally dependent...
     
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  8. Howard E

    Howard E Chillin' With My Peeps

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    In that case, you may want to rethink that plywood door. Perhaps make it a screen or wire mesh door instead? And cut some holes in the sides for even more airflow? Actually, you might get by with nothing more than a roof to keep the sun off. Normally, cold, wet and humid are the problems most have to deal with. Your problem is too much heat. If you have a run, by all means make it as open and shaded as possible. And water will be critical. Birds don't sweat, so will have to pant themselves silly to keep cool, and each breath will be taking warm moist air with it. Lots and lots of water.

    I know there are folks on here from AZ. They may have better ideas for dealing with hot and dry than the rest of us.
     
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  9. GodofPecking

    GodofPecking Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It's similar to my aquarium. If you overlook the different building materials, dimensions, purpose and animals, then the similarities are obvious.

    This is awesome. I can almost smell the poop on that floor already [​IMG]oops, that doesn't sound right, meh, you can always sweep it into bags and sell it rather than letting it fall to the ground.

    We have to be careful of drop bears and alarmists where I live. Chickens aren't descendants of chickens that lived in carpeted houses millions of years ago. They lived in trees and often nest in cavities. They'll be just fine, like their ancestors.

    Chooks also keep themselves cool by dust bathing. They do that because the ground is cool., even when they are squeeky clean.

    It's not just a roof, but an extra roof that is best and I'll tell you why.

    The roof on a sunny day is hot, and identical to a electric room heater, it heats the space it points at, that is the coop in this case. You can feel the heat on your face when you stand inside the coop especially if you are sunburnt. Or use your hand and touch the metal roof. Or best of all use a thermometer laying on top of a perch and then tell everyone the difference between ordinary and passive cooled.

    You passively cool the coop by adding a piece of roofing, even old and holey roofing, about 6 inches or more above the roof to create shade. The roof underneath the roof is now in the shade and you will be able to tell how much cooler it is using any means at all. The topmost roof turns the suns heat into hot air that shimmers off it and rises, rather than radiating into the coop.
     
  10. MeepBeep

    MeepBeep Chillin' With My Peeps


    I have no idea where you live, but your use of 'chooks' suggest Australia, correct? If so I suspect your cold weather chicken keeping experience is about zero? You simply don't have seasonal weather that say dips to -20°F (-29°C) with high winds that can push the windchill to -60°F (-51°C)... Without a proper draft free shelter those temps will worst case, freeze the chicken dead on the roost, or best case cause sever frostbite, they wont' "be just fine" in those weather conditions without proper shelter...

    As I stated in my post, a full wire grate bottom is a very poor choice in said cold/windy climates and as I stated in the US it's no challenge for weasels (that are in most areas of the US) to squeeze through a 1" (25mm) hole and kill an entire flock of birds just for fun...

    Today's domestic fowl are not their ancestors that lived in a jungle nor do most of us live and keep them in jungle like conditions, so it's apple to oranges to strawberries trying to comparing them to their ancestors that almost certainly had a far greater mortality rate vs a properly cared for domestic fowl ...
     

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