Saturday, January 26, 2008

chicken coop

since i strained something in my groin, last thursday, i have been taking things easy. i decided that i needed to design our chicken coop. our old coop is sorely undersized and was built in a day from the scrappiest scrap materials.

the new coop should house two or three times the amount of chickens. there will be eight egg collection boxes. designed based on this principal.

the coop will be eight feet by eight feet square. half will be used for roosts and the other half will be for feed storage, brooding area and egg collection from nest boxes.

the feed will be in 55 gallon drums. there will be a pass through into the roost area. we'll use this for cleaning and catching chickens. the whole thing will be on a slab sloping gently toward a clean-out door. there will be two tiers of next boxes, making eight total. roosts will be in three tiers 90º out of phase from level to level. the roosts will remove easily for cleaning and allow easy access to next boxes. there will be a large rampart door that pulls up to close--large enough for a turkey. a huge easterly facing window for lots of light in the morning. a medium sized run in case we need any nest box re-training. the run should be substantial enough so they can live there for weeks at a time if necessary.

the coop will be much further from the house--two and a half times as far.

see the old coop on the right? the new one will be half way down the hollow on a flat spot. i'll have electricity down there so venturing down there to close them up for the evening won't be too daunting.


Anonymous said...

That's an ambitious little project! I imagine a string of lights, such as Christmas lights lighting the trail down to the new coop. And the new coop is sitting next to another slab where the cabana and hot tub you're gonna build for me will sit.

sugarcreekfarm said...

Thanks for sharing! I'm in need of a new coop, but haven't sat down and tried to figure out a design yet. I'll be following along to see how yours works out!

Anonymous said...

How will those nest boxes work? Will you not use any nesting material? My girls usually create a nest with such a lip that the eggs wouldn't roll out even with a slope. Can't wait to see the progress.

Kramer said...

I tried doing the sloping box but I wasn't able to put any material in them. The problem with free-ranging chickens are they aren't forced to lay in the boxes. Mine would find other places that had more nesting type material, hay bales, grass clippings, under plants, etc. Then I would have to try and find where they may have laid them each day making it very difficult to find sometimes. I had to put nesting material back in and eventually went back to old fashioned nesting boxes. If yours work, please let me know how you got them to lay in them. Good luck in your coop building. I have changed mine a little each time I build a new one so hopefully you get yours just right the first time.

Omelay said...

matt, same slab

kelli, i hope to be of service.

ang, i think kramer has changed my mind.

kramer, thanks for the comment. we already have rogue hens that are bad to lay elsewhere. i am sure that things would get much worse.

Robbyn said...

We've been wondering about coop designs, and will be following your project with great interest. What is the total number of chickens you'll be housing? We love your blog and it's featured on our latest blogroll..sorry for the delay, as we've intended to have it there for some time now :)

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