Urban Homestead backyard plan - chicken coop located.

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Sam3 Abq, Dec 31, 2013.

  1. Sam3 Abq

    Sam3 Abq Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Here is a rendering of our current layout for our Urban Homestead. Any feedback / comments are appreciated.
    Here are some background comments for orientation of our plan.
    * South of the lot line is parking for nearby apartment units and the alley runs behind the parking.
    * East side (bottom of image) are the backyards of 3 houses.
    * West side (top of image) is a 10' vehicle access easement to a neighbors backyard.

    ~Sam


    [​IMG]
     
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Do you plan on letting your chickens free range in part of the back yard? I assume that’s why the fence is there.

    Chickens will eat bees. I’m not sure if they will eat enough bees to threaten the hives or not. You might start a specific thread with that in the title to get the attention of someone with experience in that.

    I don’t see a fence between the chickens and the garden. The chickens will love to eat about anything in there as it is sprouting and most things as they are growing. I think you will be building another fence.

    Those compost bins are great. The chickens will love scratching in there. If the sides are not high enough, they will scratch that stuff all over the place, including out of the bin. Make sure you have high sides on all 4 sides. If the chickens can’t get to the compost bins, you might consider incorporating them in your run so the chickens can help you turn it plus they’ll really enjoy foraging in there.

    Those compost bins look huge compared to the chicken coop and run. The proportions just don’t look right. Make sure you are giving your chickens enough space. That helps a lot with behavioral problems.

    I know you are in the desert but make sure your coop and run are not the lowest things around. If you have to, build up the base for both of them so water does not run in and, if it gets wet, it can drain. Consider using guttering to capture rainwater in a rain barrel to water your garden and keep rainwater out of your coop and run.

    Have you checked to see if you are legal? First, just to make sure you can have 7 hens, but also that you are far enough away from the houses to the East?
     
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  3. 1muttsfan

    1muttsfan Overrun With Chickens

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    Excellent advice from Ridgerunner, especially about the garden and drainage - I know how torrential rains can cause flooding. And how much damage a herd of chickens can do when they stampede though the garden.
     
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  4. Gallo del Cielo

    Gallo del Cielo La Gallina Resort & Spa

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    My Coop
    It looks good Sam! As usual, Ridgerunner has good advice. I have friends with bee hives and chickens and the birds don't seem to bother them. My first question is what surrounds the south and east sides of the chicken coop area? I would want some sort of fence that made it difficult to see the chickens from the alley and from the backyards of the three houses. Secondly, do you have plans for shade for the coop other than the fruit tree to the west? That southern exposure could be rough in the summer. Maybe you have a wall around the property that would block sun and the view from outside?
     
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  5. Mahlzeit

    Mahlzeit Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I agree with the 2 above posts/ Just curious what are the dimensions of your yard?
     
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  6. Sam3 Abq

    Sam3 Abq Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for the feedback Ridgerunner !
    01 Yes, our plan is to allow the hens to free-range in the entire backyard - there are a series of enclosures for them to have access to but in theory they will have access to it all in one way or another.
    02 Our plans for beekeeping are to introduce the hives in the spring of 2015 (want to get one season of hen raising under our belt) I have joined the Albuquerque Bee keepers assoc. and have already made contact with others locally who have both bees and hens - I'm looking forward to both being part of our Homestead supporting the GARDEN in their own unique way.
    03 There is a fence planned that encloses the 1st hen area (coop and compost bins will be located here when the gate is "closed". One more gate is shown opening to the Fleur de Lawn area. The chicken coop will be the primary area for the hens to be outdoors - completely enclosed with cover overhead. Next they would have access to the 1st open air area just described. Next the gate could be opened to allow access to the straw bale garden area and or they could be allowed access to the Fleur de Lawn (entire backyard) .
    04 We have one compost bin built so far - made 100% from recycled wood pallets and will be making the 2nd one in the spring. It was really our 1st action step in our Urban Homestead and can't wait to start adding the fertilizer from our hens. The version we made is put together and taken apart by removing slats. The 1st one has removable wood plank cover so we'll be able to allow the hens access as needed. The size of the bins in the rendering may be a little off scale wise with reality - they are only about 40" square and high (I've attached an current photo of the backyard for reference)
    05 The size of the coop (enclosed run and hen house) was a huge research issue for me. Initial plan is to start with 7 chicks (may add one more ?) The enclosed run will provide 70 sf (13'-4" x 5'-4") of outdoor space and the hen house will give 28 sf (5'-4" x 5'-4") of interior space. We'll see how this works. Given the ample space for free-ranging, I'm thinking we're going to have happy hens :)
    06 Yes, the coop and run will be raised a bit from the surrounding area - plan is to use sand as the floor of the run. And yes again, we do show a rain barrel adjacent to the coop. Metal roof for the coo roof will allow us to use this precious H2o. The rendering also shows additional rain barrels for harvesting next to our house - need to invest in a metal roof for there 1st.
    07 Legal question was the 1st thing ever done. Albuquerque allows a max. of 15 birds - one of which can be a rooster (no plans for a roo - noise issue just waiting to happen :( So, we're good with room to grow if we want w/the 7 hens. Finally, the coop is set back 5' which = our sideyard set back for ancillary structures - good to go there.

    Here's the current photo of where we are - the BEFORE :
    [​IMG]
     
  7. Sam3 Abq

    Sam3 Abq Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Agree. I have done some research on the rain harvesting and plan to size the barrels correctly to not waste any water harvested because yes, we can get huge cloud bursts here in Abq. where the amount of water in one 20 min. shower is huge.
    We have gates planned to section off the hens 1st open air run and the garden enclosure. Then in the fall or when we're present, allow them access to the garden to monitor.
     
  8. Sam3 Abq

    Sam3 Abq Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks Gallo ! Just posted a response to Ridgerunner that included a photo - maybe enough to answer your comments. 6' high fencing is along those lines. The overhang of the coop roof in relation to the fencing will provide continuous shade in the summer - again this issue was an important one for us here in the high-desert. One of the plantings we will provide are grape vines. We may plant those at the wood pergola by patio area or another spot may be an arbor to the west of the coop along the fence line separating the eco-lawn area ? Trees will take some time to mature so we need to definitely be award of shade.
     
  9. Sam3 Abq

    Sam3 Abq Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The north/south length from 6' high fence to flagstone patio is about 43' and the east/west dimension is approx. 41'.
    Overall, our property is 6,100 sf or 1/14 of an acre.
     
  10. Mahlzeit

    Mahlzeit Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That is a great way to get the most possible out of your backyard! Look forward to seeing pictures of the progress![​IMG]
     
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