Ventilation Design Questions for our new coop.....

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by CRYROLFE, May 10, 2011.

  1. CRYROLFE

    CRYROLFE Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 6, 2009
    Missouri
    My Coop
    We are in the process of building our very first coop!!!

    We live in St. Louis, MO. It gets VERY hot and humid here in the summer (ugh) and we want to make sure our girls have enough ventilation.
    Here is an example of the coop that we are building.....so far we have the frame work stained and the area leveled.

    COOP EXAMPLE OF WHAT WE WANT

    Our coop will be about 2 feet from our privacy fence on the back wall of the long side. We will add the smaller squares like in the photos for ventilation and a larger window that opens on the outside coop door. Should we also add another window on the left side of the coop above the nest boxes?
    All of the windows will be able to shut.

    [​IMG]

    Do people add fans inside their coops as well? The entire top of the coop is open air w/ hardware cloth as well and we will add plywood in winter to cover that up.

    [​IMG]

    Our coop will also be a reverse of this design w/ the house on the left since there is more shade there in our yard.
    [​IMG]





    Thanks for any help!
     
    Last edited: May 10, 2011
  2. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    It is not a bad coop design for you in general. I would VERY SERIOUSLY suggest swapping the clear roof for an opaque one unless this will be sited in a full-shade-all-day-for-8-months-of-the-year location. With an opaque roof, yes it should be cool enough. I do not recall how cold you get, but you may find you need to close it up more in the wintertime (e.g. block off the ceiling, if you use their hardwarecloth installation, but see below about that) to prevent excessive cold wind on the chickens.

    Warning, the illustrated coop has its roofing panels VERY incorrectly installed, please don't do that yourself as it tends to cause the roof to rip off in storm winds... instead, get the mfr's pamphlet/webpage on how to support and install the roofing, and do it right so it will last. Strongly recommend polycarbonate (the more expensive type) rather than pvc (the cheap plastic roofing) if you go with plastic; tho metal is also a reasonable option.

    Personally I dislike this design's idea of having hardwarecloth all across the top, it uses extra hardwarecloth for no obvious reason; you can DO it that way, but it had darn well better be REALLY well attached and personally even if I *did* do it that way I'd add more along the open eaves to keep raccoons from getting on top there and being Sorely Tempted by the chickens below. Tempting raccoons by letting them hover over their potential dinner is never a good idea.

    I am under the impression that St Louis gets reasonably-cool winters, like down into the teens F a lot of the time? If this is true (sorry for being too lazy to look it up LOL) then if it were me I would reconfigure the design slightly so that the hardwarecloth is run on the VERTICAL surfaces (eaves), with some means to close that down or off in the winter, and add more ventilation into the covered run so *that* would be what you'd mainly have open during wintertime. And an opaque roof at least on the house portion.

    if your coop is designed right, you don't need a fan for ventilation (air quality or coop temperature). Some people in very hot humid climates DO find they benefit from a fan pointed *at the chickens* to help keep the chickens cool, but that is different than having one installed in the coop and usually just involves plopping a household fan out there pointed at some shady part of the chicken run on the hottest days.

    Good luck, have fun,

    Pat
     
  3. CRYROLFE

    CRYROLFE Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 6, 2009
    Missouri
    My Coop
    Thanks Pat!

    Our coop will have a smokey grey polycarbonate roof and hubby has read lots and lots about installing it from the manufacturer. It is supposed to block out 70% of the sun's rays.
    We can cover up some of the roof in the winter if it gets too cold for them and add a lamp.

    There are no coons here....but sometimes we see possums and hawks.

    So far we have the walls up....

    URBAN EGGS
     
  4. harvster

    harvster Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 19, 2011
    SE PA
    There are raccoons in your area. You can be sure of that. They are everywhere in the US except for some of the dessert areas in the southwest.
     
  5. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Ontario, Canada
    Quote:Oh yes there are.

    If you don't believe me, take a look at how many pest-control companies in your city offer raccoon removal (google it) [​IMG]

    Seriously, you may not SEE them but they are there, especially once you have an "attractive nuisance" like chickens.

    Pat
     
  6. CoyoteMagic

    CoyoteMagic RIP ?-2014

    Quote:And those area tend to have Coati which are just as bad. Only cuter, lol
     
  7. cowdogcadillac

    cowdogcadillac Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 23, 2009
    Looks like a decent design for a hot area like here in Florida, but I even cover up over open wire with thick Visqueen plastic in wintertime to keep heat in and wind out. Your getting there. Keep looking at other folks designs here. It is an amazing resource. Good luck making something that works for you and your location and post pics when you build it.
     

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