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Coop critique?

1037 Views 29 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  Mouthpear
馃憢 from upstate NY, on a windy, chilly hill.
We鈥檙e elder simple folk, homesteaders with a soft spot for God鈥檚 little creations.
We鈥檝e built a new coop for our 6 chickens. Is it okay to post pics for critiquing purposes in the near future? We get crazy 馃ザ winters, and we don鈥檛 want our chickens to be suffering in any way.
Thank you, in advance!
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Of course you can post pics. Even if people aren't posting they do look at the pics.
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So, the pics arent in order. Its a 10x12 shed, with a coop screen box inside. Windows on 1 side only. The rest of the building houses barrels & bins of coop supplies & feed.
The above 2 pics are with the interior doors open. That is linoleum on the walls & floor. No insulation. The shed is up on cinder blocks.
You can also see a couple of old pop doors no longer in use. The only time the chickens are inside is when they鈥檙e laying eggs or sleeping.
Any comments or critiquing is welcome!
Winter temps by day can be in 0-10 F, at night 馃憞
Also, I use wood chips and clean the coop weekly (or sooner).
OK, it's five in the morning and this might be obvious to others. But what is that small cage area? Is that a brooder?

How many birds when up? I have concerns that there isn't enough floor space left for them if/when they need to be up. And chances are high, considering where you live, that they will want to be up.

The building itself is ideal. It's all about what the human does when completing the inside. Perfect roosts with the 2X4.
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This is our 鈥榓ddition鈥 to the coop. It鈥檚 still under construction and might not be finished til spring. It will be a 4x12 foot covered deck . One part mostly encosed, the other part mostly screened w/ hardware cloth. They鈥檒l have access to both sections all the time, wirh only 1 pop door exit to go down to the ground, which we can close off if necessary.
OK, I'm not understanding. Maybe pics taken from more distance will help resolve my confusion.

How much open floor space are they going to end up with once all the construction is done?
I'm not exactly understanding what's going on either, but if all they get for space is that little screened box, that's not very much room for more than 3-4 chickens, especially through a winter where they can't go outside as often. I can also tell you that you're going to get real sick of stooping to clean that out, not to mention that half their space is going to be covered in poop because they've pooped all night from their roosts. I also see a chicken projectile pooping into that feeder.

I can also guarantee your chickens will want to lay all the way in the corner of that nesting box, so you'll be having to crawl inside that box, through poop, to reach the eggs. I am in my 30s, and my knees and back hurt looking at this! I would consider removing that screen roof so you can stand up straight. You have all that lovely head space, use it! Being able to walk straight into my coop and use a big grain shovel to throw the muck and mess out without crawling around and stooping is wonderful, and I know I'll continue to be able to take care of my chickens when things don't work as they used to anymore. Think about the logistics of cleaning that coop.

I would be using well over half that building for coop. It's a great little building. All you would have to do is build a "wall" of wire where you don't want them to go or get into stored things.

I would also put hardware cloth over those vents. I can't tell how big the openings are, but smaller predators like weasels or mink may fit through if they're able to climb it. Rule of thumb is if it's bigger than an inch, seal it!
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The addition will be 12x4 feet of floor space, completed. And predator proof, so they can be inside anytime.
Plant Tree Wood Building House
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We have 5 hens & 1 rooster. The interior coop is 10 x 5 feet, i believe, and approx 55 inches high. There鈥檚 approximately 10 feet of roosting area.
We GREATLY appreciate all comments!!!
Is that 50 square feet all open floor? If it is, then you're good to go on space.
Is that 50 square feet all open floor? If it is, then you're good to go on space.
Yes. And I don鈥檛 think they鈥檙e too pressed for roost space! ;)
Pet supply Gas Wood Livestock Room
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They love being free-range. Last winter they would go under the house (16 inch crawlspace on slab) and hung out there when they didn鈥檛 want to be in the snow. We did not like that, and worried constantly! Now, with the new shed coop up on cement blocks, they can hang out under there on grass, as they now do if it鈥檚 rainy. And we鈥檒l confine them to their fenced pasture, as well, if weather is poor or we have to move snow around.
I'm not exactly understanding what's going on either, but if all they get for space is that little screened box, that's not very much room for more than 3-4 chickens, especially through a winter where they can't go outside as often. I can also tell you that you're going to get real sick of stooping to clean that out, not to mention that half their space is going to be covered in poop because they've pooped all night from their roosts. I also see a chicken projectile pooping into that feeder.

I can also guarantee your chickens will want to lay all the way in the corner of that nesting box, so you'll be having to crawl inside that box, through poop, to reach the eggs. I am in my 30s, and my knees and back hurt looking at this! I would consider removing that screen roof so you can stand up straight. You have all that lovely head space, use it! Being able to walk straight into my coop and use a big grain shovel to throw the muck and mess out without crawling around and stooping is wonderful, and I know I'll continue to be able to take care of my chickens when things don't work as they used to anymore. Think about the logistics of cleaning that coop.

I would be using well over half that building for coop. It's a great little building. All you would have to do is build a "wall" of wire where you don't want them to go or get into stored things.

I would also put hardware cloth over those vents. I can't tell how big the openings are, but smaller predators like weasels or mink may fit through if they're able to climb it. Rule of thumb is if it's bigger than an inch, seal it!
Thank you, Lillith! We like your ideas of screening the vents and you are right about how hard it is to clean. Upside: The doors come right off easily, and the top wouldn鈥檛 be too difficult to remove.
Downside: it鈥檚 a project that will have to wait til spring, as will the finishing of their addition鈥
What is that cage space in the second pic?

Is the screened porch facing South? If it does then you're liable to find them out there most of the Winter. Little to no wind and the sun shining on the area would make it an ideal hang out spot without having to be under anything.
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