Stealthy coop and run needed

Discussion in 'Local Chicken Laws & Ordinances (and how to change' started by Civil Eggs, Oct 6, 2012.

  1. Civil Eggs

    Civil Eggs Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 6, 2012
    I want to keep a few backyard hens quietly in the suburbs. Our bylaws are under review. This is what my husband built. Its nice to be able to walk into it, but its taller than I had intended. How might I make it stealthier so its not seen and hens are not heard by neighbors?

    [​IMG]
     
  2. CluckyCharms

    CluckyCharms Chillin' With My Peeps

    ...that hen haven is humongous! I think it would be pretty difficult to stealth that puppy. At first I thought well...that's easy! Just put climbing/creeping ivy all over it and let it grow and cover it all - but that ivy is very poisonous to chickens. They usually leave it alone but there's always that horrible possibility they won't and then they're sick...so I wouldn't do that.

    Anyway, if I were to attempt to stealth it this is what I would do:

    - Paint that fence behind it first.
    - Paint the top three quarters of the wood framing the exact same color as the fence.
    - Paint the bottom quarter of the framing a mulchy brown color, to match your choice of bedding.
    - Plant some Black-eyed Susans and Day lilies around on either side (they are safe for chickens and this would create a pretty focal point away from the run and into your pretty flower bed instead).


    You'll have to excuse my slop job but...this (sort of) puts the image in your head:

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2012
  3. TriangleMaster9

    TriangleMaster9 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Woah man that's a great idea I never would have thought of that... We painted ours to match the house.... But not really for stealth either... I live in a pretty tightly packed neighborhood too and so far we've seemed to get away with it, we just asked our next door neighbors and they didn't seem to mind.
     
  4. TXchickmum

    TXchickmum Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We have a run that is similar to yours. It is as tall as the fence. We already had some Carolina Jessamine trailing onto the fence near the front of it, and now it has trailed across the front edge (which faces the gate/lawn entrance). When the gate is opened, the only view from the street is a lovely wall of Jessamine with a bird bath in front. No chickens are visible. (and they have not/do not eat nor bother this plant at all.)

    I think your coop/run should be fine. Are there any two-story houses near your property? Does your lawn slope in any way that makes it more visible to surrounding neighbors? Those folks might see/find out about your chickens. -don't think that something like this should be too visible from the street, though.
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2012
  5. aschm01

    aschm01 Out Of The Brooder

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    You could possibly disguise it as a greenhouse using those corrugated polycarbonate roofing panels you can get at Home Depot.
     
  6. Civil Eggs

    Civil Eggs Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank you for all the terrific ideas. Clucky, the visual was very helpful.

    We can grow hops here with ease and they grow quickly. I may plant some to go up the sides. The idea of a greenhouse is a terrific one.

    How do I reduce noise? I've read that bales of straw make a good insulation and sound buffer.
     
  7. mscallisto

    mscallisto Out Of The Brooder

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    Have you tried talking to your neighbors? They aren't allowed in our neighborhood either, but we talked to our neighbors and they were all fine with it. We also offer them eggs once in a while too. I call them "hush eggs" :D. As far as quiet, I'm not sure. My two girls, which are australops, I got because they are supposed to be one of the quieter chickens. They are, until they started laying. They "talk" about their egg for about a half hour. But again, we talked to the neighbors so they were aware and they are fine with it.

    We also make sure to keep it clean so it doesn't smell, and have invited neighbors and their children to come see them. It's entertaining and interesting to both adults and children which seems to help with the tolerance too.
     
  8. Civil Eggs

    Civil Eggs Out Of The Brooder

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    There is one neighbour in particular, a few doors down, that will not be happy with any bending of bylaws. She complained to the city this summer so dog owners got warnings about numbers and noise, plus the garbage truck never comes before 7 am anymore. As long as I'm not visible to her or can be heard down the street, I'll be fine.

    Most houses here are bungalows. Only a house half a block away is tall enough to look into our yard from an upstairs bedroom.

    I think its important that my chicken coop and run not look like it houses chickens. The greenhouse idea is a good one. Our coop could be mistaken for a rabbit hutch.
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2012
  9. Civil Eggs

    Civil Eggs Out Of The Brooder

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    Woah! [​IMG]Those polycarbonate sheets are over $125 each for 36" x 72". Skip the greenhouse idea. [​IMG]
     
  10. aschm01

    aschm01 Out Of The Brooder

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    LOL.... try these http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc...=-1&keyword=suntuf&storeId=10051#.UHLLeI5ZE20

    or http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc...=-1&keyword=suntuf&storeId=10051#.UHLO5I5ZE20


    I have a similar problem. The law where I live is vague with loopholes and the county is bankrupt so they aren't likely to be able to afford it if I contest them in a court. (I have a law degree I can dust off and defend myself pro se). I have a nosey nelly neighbor married to a creeper and they have been unreasonable with me before complaining about the appearance of my vegetable garden. This vegetable garden is French Potager style and was photographed for a magazine a couple years ago, so I know it's attractive.... certainly more than their unlandscaped yard with invasive plants everywhere. I didn't even bother to ask those neighbors if I could have a few backyard hens. So I've disguised their coops as large cold frames, that I'm going to claim are for artichokes if ever confronted. We're having bad weather today, but I'll try and post a picture if it clears up to get out there and photograph it.
     

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