Thoughts on Coop/Run Design?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by catherinearvin, Feb 4, 2015.

  1. catherinearvin

    catherinearvin New Egg

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    Jan 31, 2015
    Hey, guys! I'm new to BYC, but I'm excited to become a part of the community. I live in Louisiana and I intend on getting chickens after building a coop. I've never owned chickens before so I'm definitely glad to have this resource!

    I only plan on owning a few chickens, no more than five or so. I want a coop that will able to be moved about and is small enough to fit in the space I have available in my yard. I looked around the internet to see if I could find any plans that fit my criteria. I found a few that would work but ended up deciding to just see where I would get with designing my own. I made a 3D model of the coop/run combination I had in mind. It's simple, I'll add more features as they come to mind, but what I really want to get feedback on are the dimensions and general design. Right now, The coop is twelve feet by five feet, or sixty square feet. Forty of those square feet are dedicated to the run, and the other twenty are for the coop. From what I've read, this is room enough to house five chickens, ideally. I've attached screenshots of the design I created on Google Sketchup. This is my first time using Sketchup (or any 3D modeling software) so I apologize if it's a bit rudimentary and messy, but I hope you can get the general idea.

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    As you can see, it's separated into three segments, two for the run and one for the coop. Each segment is separated by an A-frame piece of wood. I'll have access to each segment and therefore the entire length of the structure by way of three doors. These doors aren't represented in the model, but they're located at the top part of one side of the structure. I'm not sure how well those labels show that, so if you need more clarification please just ask. Right now, the door between the coop and the run is one foot by one and one fourth feet. Is this big enough for a chicken to pass through? I'm not sure whether to construct an actual door that opens and closes allowing me to keep the chickens safely in the coop at night or to just make a blank opening. I'm leaning towards the former, seeing as we have a lot of poisonous snake here in Louisiana, some of which might be able to get through chicken wire.

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    Do you think that those three door will allow enough access? Do you think this is an acceptable amount of space and a good layout? What do you think I should add or take away? Have I forgotten anything important in designing? I'm sorry that all those questions sound like a school assignment writing prompt, haha, but I would absolutely love to hear your opinions!

    Thank you so much!
    - Catherine
     
  2. N F C

    N F C doo be doo be doo Premium Member

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    Dec 12, 2013
    Wyoming
    Welcome to BYC! [​IMG] Good for you on building the coop before you get chicks (they grow so quickly, sometimes folks are building at the last minute).

    You mention chicken wire in your plans...chicken wire is only good at keeping chickens in, it won't keep predators out. Hardware cloth would be a better choice for protecting your birds.

    You may want to run your design past the coop experts found at this link:
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/f/9/coop-run-design-construction-maintenance
    You should be able to get a lot of feedback there.

    Have fun building and getting your chickens. Nice to have you join us!
     
  3. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Ditto^^^!! Preplanning and chicken wire comments especially .......
    .......tho I found this thread in the coop&run - design, construction, maintenance forum so maybe it got moved already.


    A-frames really cut down on head room, both for the chickens and the keepers, so that your sq footage is actually smaller than the foot print might suggest.
    They really start squeezing on the space as you go higher for roosts...which are best located a foot above nests so they don't sleep (and poop) in the nests.

    I would suggest reading about lots of different coops in the threads to gain a perspective on pros and cons of various coop designs.
    It's hot and humid where you live so you'll need lots of ventilation.....an open air coop design would be of benefit in your climate.

    The advanced search option can be a big help in sorting out the plethora of info on BYC.
    advanced search>titles only>open air coop

    Best of CLuck in your planning!
     
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