To much ventilation?

City Farmer Jim

Songster
Mar 18, 2020
573
1,133
216
South Texas close to Corpus Christi
Is the old adage "more is better" for coop ventilation a good thing? I am in the layout stage of building a new coop. It will be 6x8 with a tall roof and a loft. Here's the question this is planned for 12 standard chickens, there will be 4 24"x24" full flow windows, 10" x 96" soffit vents and a 1.5"x96" ridge vent.. is this to much ventilation? The windows alone are 16 square feet, the soffit vents are 7' ish square feet, plus the roof ridge ventilation. I'm not going to count the entry door or pop door as they will mostly be closed. I do not plan to install gable vents BUT will frame for them or vent fans if need be. I want to thank all that reply in advance. I wish I had known then what I know now about chicken coop construction...ventilation is still a whole other story 🙄 lol
 

rosemarythyme

Scarborough Fair
Premium Feather Member
5 Years
Jul 3, 2016
17,850
35,747
1,062
WA, Pac NW
My Coop
My Coop
No, not really... and you're in Texas. I have roughly 32 sq ft of ventilation not including any doors, in a coop built for 12 chickens (have 11 right now). The only time any of it was closed up was I closed up the 2 windows next to the roost during the worst snowstorm in 50 years, otherwise everything remains open through snow or rain or windstorms.
 

City Farmer Jim

Songster
Mar 18, 2020
573
1,133
216
South Texas close to Corpus Christi
Okay...that makes me feel better. I'm going to frame gable end vents and install them. I will also include all the necessary wiring and hardware for exhaust fans. I'm kinda excited to build a new coop that corrects the mistakes the first one has. The first one was perfect for the first 10 -12 months...not so much for 9 FULL GROWN hens. I will take pictures and write out the plans and try to post regularly on the progress. Its going to be a 2-4 month project as I will be working alone...except for the 9 HENS that will be SUPERVISING my every move.
 

U_Stormcrow

Free Ranging
Jun 7, 2020
4,636
13,517
536
North FL Panhandle Region / Wiregrass
No such thing as too much ventilation, particularly in that climate. and don't count the ridge vent, it doesn't. What it does do is allow your eave vents to work properly, and help draw warm air out, which cuts down on radiant heat from your roofing materials - a great choice in TX or any of the southern states.

What there is too much of is poorly placed ventilation. That is, any ventilation which allows drafts on your birds while they roost or nest. Assuming those large windows of yours are well above where the birds will be on your roosts, it sounds like you are doing everything right.

Normally, I wouldn't recommend gable vents in combination with a roof vent and eave vents - you can create a situation where the eave vents essentially don't work because the gables alter the convection currents in the house - but that's a fluid dynamics issue on a whole house (residence) concern, I'm not sure how applicable it might be to a hen house - or if the use of a powered fan and gable won't draw air thru the windows and eaves and then force it out, making the ridge vent largely superfluous.

Your best bet may be to simply put a thermostat and hygrometer in the hen house, see if its not maintaining roughly the same temp and humidity inside as outside, then adjust as needed. A stick with some tinsel or similar will allow you to see airflows thru the house, or you could use a smoking punk. Personally, I'd go Tstat and Hygro, adjust till you get the desired results. How/why it works isn't as important as it working.
 

Alaskan

The Frosted Flake
Premium Feather Member
13 Years
Jul 26, 2008
34,421
70,971
1,462
Kenai Peninsula, Alaska
My Coop
My Coop
My family is from Texas, and they have always had coops that are mostly wire.

So the front wall all wire, and the other 3 walls half wire.

Deep eves (like one foot eves, or even deeper) will keep out most rain.

In huge storms my grandmother had shutters to close over the halfwalls, while the front solid wire wall was kept open since that wall had a 5 foot eve (it was a bit of a porch area to hang the feeder).

My baby sis never closes up her coop.. so when the rain goes full sideways, yes.. the coop can get a bit wet.

My point:

In Texas heat will kill your birds... not cold.
 

City Farmer Jim

Songster
Mar 18, 2020
573
1,133
216
South Texas close to Corpus Christi
This what we have now, as newbies 2 years ago it was cute and whimsical and looked like it would fulfill all the needs of keeping chickens....WRONG or at least in my eyes now. It doesn't have the space the 9 girls need now even for just sleeping and laying eggs. They survived the Texas 100 plus degree days but I can do better for them. On that note what do y'all use for perch stock ? Right now they are using 2x2's (1.5x1.5) I've seen in coop pictures everything from tree branches to 1.5" dowels to 2x4's with the wide side for perching. I'm toying with the idea of a 2x2 but more rounded...basically easing the corners even more than they are when new. Kinda like a dowel with small flats on it.
 

Attachments

  • 1800-chicken-coop-2(1).jpg
    1800-chicken-coop-2(1).jpg
    143.7 KB · Views: 1

3KillerBs

Enabler
12 Years
Jul 10, 2009
10,579
27,054
1,066
North Carolina Sandhills
My Coop
My Coop
T...On that note what do y'all use for perch stock ? Right now they are using 2x2's (1.5x1.5) I've seen in coop pictures everything from tree branches to 1.5" dowels to 2x4's with the wide side for perching. I'm toying with the idea of a 2x2 but more rounded...basically easing the corners even more than they are when new. Kinda like a dowel with small flats on it.

I'm fond of natural branch perches. The ladies currently have two, one in the coop and one in the run, which we cut from the trunks of young scrub oak. I didn't put a tape measure on the diameter, but think about the size of a man's wrist at the thinnest to the size of a woman's ankle at the widest.

Why natural branches?

1. I have to buy 2x4's and have to thin out scrub oak and young pines anyway.

2. It's more work to sand down the sharp corners of the 2x4's than to cut the tree branches/trunks.

3. They would naturally roost in a tree on a branch so it feels right emotionally. :)

I didn't take the bark off the scrub oak because it's tight and smooth. I might take off rough pine bark -- which would negate the less work angle, but since DH has a shave horse and a draw knife he could do it during a historical demo (he's employed at a historic site).
 

U_Stormcrow

Free Ranging
Jun 7, 2020
4,636
13,517
536
North FL Panhandle Region / Wiregrass
There are threads full of disputes, and no shortage of scientific papers, on what makes the best roost bars. Personally, I have a mix of 2x4s on edge, 2x3s on flat, 2x4s on flat, and even some natural branches. The birds roost where they want. Mostly the 2x3s and 2x4s on flats, though my youngest birds (currently, the Silver Lace) liked the 2x4s on edge for their first months of life. I think they,. with the comets, have now moved to the 2x3s on flat.
 

City Farmer Jim

Songster
Mar 18, 2020
573
1,133
216
South Texas close to Corpus Christi
I have read/heard that they want, need,like to rest their breast bone on something solid as they rest/sleep...I'm a newbie and still trying to figure this all out.. think I will give them several options including natural branch to roost on. I REALLY appreciate the help and wisdom everyone has here and the emense actual experience to back up help...I know what works for some may not work for others but there is a base line/starting point that works for all....thank you for great advice.
 

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom