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Making a new coop

Discussion in 'Poultry' started by ChickenMomma91, Oct 10, 2017.

  1. Oct 11, 2017
    ChickenMomma91

    ChickenMomma91 Almost Self-Reliant

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    F3558D91-2F18-43FF-9DAD-D357EA91A86D.jpeg 88E8D9E0-F863-4E82-84A7-ECB488D67AE4.jpeg 739B6179-31DF-42C0-B962-EC3030A37894.jpeg Here is the exsisting monster. Without a fork lift we wouldn’t be able to budge it. The bottom is two shipping pallets connected together and planked for the floor. The fence is also caving in thanks to a huge silver maple coming down on it and the shed this spring. Also the jery-rigged frame for the fence didn’t help one bit.
     
  2. Oct 12, 2017
    Beekissed

    Beekissed Mountain Sage

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    You could get a lot more mileage and build pretty cheaply if utilizing cattle panels for your coop and run. Sturdy and lightweight construction, while providing much more air and light to your flock.

    I can see all kinds of problems that can come from your current setup and the next one you propose. Too little ventilation and too small of coop space for the birds all around...that makes for sick birds eventually. With a small yard, it would be hard to outrun the fecal impact your flock would make, so it may be more efficient to establish a static coop and run while utilizing true deep litter and grow frames.

    Grow frames provide them fresh greens all year round if you plant them with the right greens....

    [​IMG]

    Cattle panel coops and runs....

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I have a hoop coop that measures 10x12 and it cost me around $300 total to build, that's including tarps and hardware. I was able then to build in the ends and even attach a dog house with lumber scraps obtained for free. Mine doesn't include a run, though, as I free range all the time, but it could very well have a large run attached for minimal expense.
     
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  3. Oct 12, 2017
    NH Homesteader

    NH Homesteader Super Self-Sufficient

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    Those grow frames are cool, I like that. I have 2 hoop coops, they're great in the warm months but haven't figured out how to make them warm enough in winter.
     
  4. Oct 12, 2017
    Beekissed

    Beekissed Mountain Sage

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    I think I have it figured! I built in my end caps and applied a clear tarp in the winter months, while also cultivating a composting deep litter under the roosts. The addition of the clear tarp was really the clincher....so sunny and warm in there, even when the birds are snowed into the coop.

    Here's a few temp readings in the DL under the roosts on a typical winter day...the old Coke thermometer is mounted at roost height and often reads 10 degrees warmer at that level than the outside temps due to the warmth of the DL at night, but on this day was reading over 25 degrees warmer than outside temps during the day time . And that's with half the front door remaining open air, huge openings on either side of the door open, a pop door right under the roosts open and open areas right at the heads of the roosting birds, under the roof.

    100_5303.jpg

    Meat thermometer shoved into the deepest part of the DL under the roosts.
    100_5315.jpg
    100_5310.jpg

    I LOVE the clear tarp in the winter...like sitting in a greenhouse now in there.

    100_5375.jpg

    100_5374.jpg

    The only tweak I need to do this winter is arrange for more water to flow into my DL under the roosts so as to get more composting...the new tarp is so leak proof that I lost valuable moisture I really needed in there this past winter. This winter I'm going to pipe some in with an eave applied to the attached dog house on the back, in hopes of getting more runoff into the litter mass. Yeah...I know...everyone else is trying to keep moisture out and I'm trying to pipe it in, but I don't have to worry about excess moisture with this setup....got the ventilation JUST right.
     
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  5. Oct 12, 2017
    NH Homesteader

    NH Homesteader Super Self-Sufficient

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    My biggest concern about that would be snow load up here. We get many, many feet of snow! Might have to look into that though, looks so nice for the chickens in there!
     
  6. Oct 12, 2017
    Beekissed

    Beekissed Mountain Sage

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    I've seen this one handle 2 ft of snow at once here but I just keep up with moving it off the coop...just takes shaking the sides of the wire panels to get the snow to shed off the top. It may mount up the sides, though, after so many feet of snow shaken off the top, so that may be an issue.

    Extra reinforcement of your framing may help with that. Lazy Gardener lives in NH and has hoop structures for runs and such and is able to use them through the winter months, so she could likely help you there.
     
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  7. Oct 12, 2017
    ChickenMomma91

    ChickenMomma91 Almost Self-Reliant

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    @Beekissed oys not going to be stationary. It’s going to be moved around every day or two and there is quite a bit of ventilation in one of the design I saw through the google search link Joel posted. My current one was poorly designed and built I’ll admit but we were naive when it came to chickens. Three years later we’ve learned our lesson about BIG hen houses.
     
  8. Oct 13, 2017
    Beekissed

    Beekissed Mountain Sage

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    The run is ventilated...but that coop? Not a bit. We like to call those death boxes.
     
  9. Oct 13, 2017
    treerooted

    treerooted Lovin' The Homestead

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    Good luck with the build @ChickenMomma91 ! I hope you come up with something that works well for your space. I'm thinking about a new coop too...only the opposite I want to go bigger lol!
     
  10. Oct 13, 2017
    ChickenMomma91

    ChickenMomma91 Almost Self-Reliant

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    @Beekissed we're looking at adapting this one here that we found on instructables coop2.jpg
    We'd add a door we can open and close from outside the fence to put the girls up at night and the top of the run most likely wouldn't have a roof. Plus adding a window on the side facing us that would be for ventilation. I'm assuming the nest box is on the other side, if not then we'd put it there across from the window. I have a general idea in my head I just suck at trying to draft things so I'm simply looking for one that matches the one in my head as close as possible and tweaking it here and there.
     
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