Suggestions for updating this coop/ included

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by KristelClucks, Dec 2, 2010.

  1. KristelClucks

    KristelClucks Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 22, 2010
    Collingswood, NJ
    Hi everyone! New here and so glad I found this forum.

    I recently started working for an exotic bird store (south jersey area) and they have this coop outside that kind of has been neglected for a while. The two chickens and two pheasants look to be in good health as they are fed very well, but the coop could use some love. I'm limited on budget, but asked if I could "adopt" them and look after their care/housing. I was graciously given permission. Sooo, now I need to figure this out.

    When I first went into it, my feet sunk down about 2". It hadn't been raked/cleared out in about a year so there was just inches and inches of poo mixed with seed shells, and whatever else was all over the ground. it took me over an hour to shovel and rake out a 6' x 9' space and I STILL need to scoop out about another 2"-3" inches of yuck in some spots.

    they have some branches running across a corner to be used as a roosting spot, but it's too high for the chickens to want to fly up to so they don't. Nor do they have nesting boxes (not necessarily for laying eggs, but just to have a nice place to sleep. Instead, these are their lil houses...

    And this is the "Roost"

    After I did the raking/shoveling I moved the "houses" further apart and fluffed up the dirt/mess, this is how it looks (I did a couple more things since then, but it's still close to the same)

    Overall shots of the pen/coop:

    I want to redo the whole inside by adding better roosts, I have a shelving unit thing I could remake into a sort of hen house with nesting boxes and such, but what else can I do to keep them happy/safe/easier to tidy up every couple days/etc. I'm tight on budget so I can't go buy tons of lumber and build something awesomely cool that all the chickens out there would want to pay rent to live in, but I want it tasteful and safe. My boss's husband said he is going to put plexi all around the bottom half of the pen to help keep out the cold, but I still think they need somewhere warmer to sleep and get them off the ground. It rained the other day and it was soooooo wet in there. Poor things had no where to go to stay dry. The roof just doesn't do enough since it comes in thru the sides. Any ideas? Any plans you know of to build covered nest boxes? I hunt on craigslist daily for old dog houses or scrap wood or even bunny hutches that I can convert. Anything I build have to be built INSIDE too cause they have a 16" wide door to get in [​IMG]

    Also, what kind of chickens are they and what kind of pheasants? Thanks so much for looking and for any help you can offer. I really want to help these lil ones and get them in a better set up.
  2. abhaya

    abhaya Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 5, 2010
    cookeville, tn
    Do you have pallets at your disposal? I have heard about people useing them to make coops. Even a single pallet high would be enough to get them off the ground. I know there are treads on pallet coops. In my run I toss in some straw for them to scratch around in it gives them some entertainment. Make sure the roosts are wide enogh that they can cover thier feet when they sleep to avoid frostbite. I hope this helps a little.
  3. ChickyChickyBaby

    ChickyChickyBaby Barefoot Bantams

    Quote:Sorry [​IMG] I can't be of help when it comes to the ideas or building or anything - my idea factory is shut down for maintenance [​IMG]

    I can tell you in the second picture where you ask what kind of chickens.......
    the black one is actually a White Crested Black Polish and the other one is a Gold Laced Polish.

    I know nothing about pheasants either. [​IMG]

    Good luck on improving their coop/pen!
  4. Chicken Chat

    Chicken Chat Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 19, 2009
    Southern Illinois
    I'm not familiar with pheasants either, so can't help you on that, although all of them are lovely. That is so good of you to take this on, bless you!

    1st, I personally would not use that white shelving unit as a roost. I don't think that would be good for their feet.
    2nd, I can only imagine that NJ gets a decent winter, never been that far east. That said, I think your birds really need a good solid coop. They need to be able to get out of the cold, wind, drafts, snow and rain.

    Some people on here use the kennels as just the run and have their coop outside of the kennel, cutting the wire to allow for bird access to the run from the coop. That might help you utilize a bigger or prebuilt coop that you don't have to worry about trying to fit inside the kennel door. Even a large dog house could work.

    Oh and [​IMG]
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2010
  5. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    Tarps are pretty cheap...I'd tarp up at least three sides for the winter. You can use bungie cords or wire to secure them well. Hopefully the side with the people door is not your prevailing wind side. I'd find a largish doghouse (check Craigslist, freecycle, etc.) that is nice and solid, raise it up on blocks or something, and add roosts inside.

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