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#1 2012-02-04 03:07:13

gubi
Member
From: Walton
Registered: 2011-06-30
Posts: 1344
Website

12'by 20' coop idea

I have found a local company that builds board and batten sheds for a little more reasonable price.  The largest shed they build are 12' by 20'.  How would you set it up?  I would like to separate breeds in late winter and early spring and free rage with electric netting the entire flock in the summer time.  Right now my chickens are in a huge bank barn and are only confined into a 15' by 15' grainery coop on the coldest nights.  3 times this winter only!  I clean the coop out 2 times per year. The bank barn has no doors on it anymore so the temperature in it is the same as the outside temperature and the chickens are very healthy.  We only go down to -20 on rare occasions and are usually -10to-15 Celsius in the winter nights.  Breeds I keep are EO's, Appenzeller Spitzhaubens, Welsummers, EE's and silkies.  The EO's and the Spitz are my main breeds.  I like my setup now except to separate for breeding but we are switching places with my parents this summer. 

This is what I have in my mind right now but I'm asking you  guys your thoughts on it.  Different opinions appreciated! 
http://a8.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/428242_10150510681221227_556756226_9331798_193386914_n.jpg

This is the idea in my head right now.  4 5' by 12' pens divided by chicken wire/hardware cloth and a wire door to get from pen to pen.  One row of outside nest boxes along the west wall, One large 9' by 5' window on the south side.  Roosts hinged off the roof like Dan Smith from ACE has them.  A chicken door underneath the roosts for them to go outside.

Last edited by gubi (2012-02-04 03:13:48)


Herd of Brown Swiss, a few sheep, red cuckoo basque, Silverspangled Appenzeller Spitzhauben, ameraucanas(EE), Welsummer, broodie silkies and a few more heritage hens

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2012-02-04 03:07:13

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#2 2012-02-04 13:42:26

poplar girl
Administrator
From: Athabasca, AB, Canada
Registered: 2011-06-30
Posts: 3159

Re: 12'by 20' coop idea

What an exciting project gubi! I wish our weather here was more like yours (well this winter has been almost like that except for that one week!).

Here are a few of my thoughts. With regards to dividing up the coop, I think 5' x 12' sounds like nice sized pens. To avoid conflict between pens and to give some strength to the interior wals would you want a ~3 foot wall at the bottom of each and then start with the hardware cloth/wire? Then the chooks can't see each other as easily from the floor.

I like your roost and pop door plan, I think I might do something similar and have the roosts fold to the roof or back wall. I will have to go refresh my memory on what Dan's look like.

The 9' by 5' window WOW is that big. Will it be in different panes with some that open for air flow in the summer? Otherwise the chooks might roast! I would think you would need to put wire over a window that big as well to keep birds from breaking it. Maybe not, just my thoughts.

And how will you access each pen for cleaning etc? Is that a wire door as well?


Raising red cuckoo (marraduna) Euskal Oiloak and self blue (lavender) & black Belgian Bearded d'Uccles.

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#3 2012-02-04 14:13:23

gubi
Member
From: Walton
Registered: 2011-06-30
Posts: 1344
Website

Re: 12'by 20' coop idea

Lots of good questions PG  The window is currently in my house but will be replaced soon.  It has two large double glassed windows and then two 1'by 4' sliding windows on the bottom.  I'm thinking about turning it upside down so the sliding windows are on top. 

This winter is really strange,  I had my flock outside yesterday.  They were all over the cow pasture.  I took down my electric fence new years eve thinking that winter was finally coming It was here for a few days only and by Monday this week we had +12 degrees Celsius.  It has been -3-+5 and will be for the next week or two according to the weather network.

Dan used to have a nice video up on ace about his coops but I think he deleted it when he cleaned up photo bucket but the picture of the hinged roosts is still up.   It shows how he divides the pens.
http://albertachickensetc.punbb-hosting … p?id=17737

I'm not sure yet about how exactly to do the divisions.  I'm thinking wire door with a 2' by 2' frame?  Ideally I would like to be able to remove the whole dividing wall.  Everything I do I'll have to remember that there will be a foot of littler in there by spring time.  I maybe need a wire door at the north end too so I can keep the door open and have the wire door closed.  I'm not sure if I will need some cross ventilation too?


Herd of Brown Swiss, a few sheep, red cuckoo basque, Silverspangled Appenzeller Spitzhauben, ameraucanas(EE), Welsummer, broodie silkies and a few more heritage hens

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#4 2012-02-04 18:14:13

Lisa
Member
From: near Arthur, Ontario, Canada
Registered: 2011-07-05
Posts: 649

Re: 12'by 20' coop idea

Stefan,

It's really neat being able to plan your coop from scratch! :)

Keeping in mind that I have lousy visual-spatial skills and worse building skills, I'm wondering about your window placement - would it be possible to put the window along the same wall as the roosts and pop doors? Or over the nesting boxes? That way everybody gets some light instead of just the guys nearest the one side (I currently have a shed-coop that has the windows on the side like your picture, and the second coop is quite dark).

I second PG's suggestion to put walls part way up between the stalls if you can, especially if you are putting breeding groups in there - this has prevented a lot of problems with touchy roosters at my place!

I've seen some plans that I thought were quite clever, and one of the things he did was put the "man" doors on the side with the least wind, and he leaves them open almost all of the time for ventilation. Not sure if that matches your arrangement....

I have roosts hanging from the ceiling - I love them - they are terrific for cleaning. :thumbs:

My coop is much shorter than yours - just one plywood board long. This was deliberate - when I don't need the coops divided, I remove the board, throw it in the loft above the coops, and have one big space which is very handy. I'm finding I like the versatility....

Looking forward to seeing the pics of your new project! ;)


When all else fails, go spend time with your chickens. :)

Pens are currently filled with Red Cuckoo (Marraduna) and Red Basque (Gorria) breeders, Spitz, and Seramas.

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#5 2012-02-04 19:31:43

gubi
Member
From: Walton
Registered: 2011-06-30
Posts: 1344
Website

Re: 12'by 20' coop idea

Thanks Lisa.  So your coop is something like 8 by 10,12?  How many does it fit, I might have to go with 2 of those depending on how much trouble the building inspector will give me.  I'm not much of a builder either.  That window is very big and I think it should get enough light into the coop and I don't think it would fit very well on the sidewalls.  I'm a bit concerned about ventilation on those days that we have a north wind and I would need to close the doors.


Herd of Brown Swiss, a few sheep, red cuckoo basque, Silverspangled Appenzeller Spitzhauben, ameraucanas(EE), Welsummer, broodie silkies and a few more heritage hens

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#6 2012-03-19 00:46:34

gubi
Member
From: Walton
Registered: 2011-06-30
Posts: 1344
Website

Re: 12'by 20' coop idea

picked up my shed yesterday at DJ's furniture in Wroxeter.  Had my dad and two neighbors help last night after chores to put down a foot of gravel and set the coop on top.  Now I just have to put in the window and door and make pens.

http://a7.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/483772_10150596388876227_556756226_9616120_1142715790_n.jpg


http://a1.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc7/480177_10150596388991227_556756226_9616121_1583549670_n.jpg

I'm now thinking of making 3 smaller 6 by 6 or 6 by 8 pens.  One for roosters and 2 for breeding and using the biggest part in the middle for my layer flock.  I'm planing on plywood on the bottom and then wire for the dividing walls.

I want to build the 2 breeding pens at the end with the big window making a wall in between both coops that has 6 laying nests in a row but 3 are open to east and 3 to the west so that I can collect all eggs from the west side. 

What kind of wire do you use to divide pens inside a coop?  I remember Claire saying that her Penny roo broke right through the chicken wire to get to the hens. 

How much room do you give your roosters in a rooster pen?  How do you set it up?  I guess I don't need laying nests.  I'll likely have 15+ roosters to winter.  Th rooster pen will be on the north east corner besides the patio door.


Herd of Brown Swiss, a few sheep, red cuckoo basque, Silverspangled Appenzeller Spitzhauben, ameraucanas(EE), Welsummer, broodie silkies and a few more heritage hens

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#7 2012-03-19 00:52:52

Flat Rock Farm
Member
From: Branchton, Ontario Canada
Registered: 2011-07-03
Posts: 3359

Re: 12'by 20' coop idea

Very nice chicken shed gubi :thumbsup:  Well you have a lot of questions, I can answer you only on the wire.  I only use the small square fencing, I think it's 1" that's all I have used in the newer pens as yes I have had the roos go right through the chicken wire.  So as I have had to replace it that is what I am using.  Plus the darn mice were chewing through the chicken wire as well :duh:

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#8 2012-03-19 01:42:12

skeffling lavender farm
Administrator
From: Wiarton, ON, Canada
Registered: 2011-06-17
Posts: 2720
Website

Re: 12'by 20' coop idea

:congrats:  Looks great Stefan! :thumbsup:

I use 1" welded wire or hardware cloth, it's the hexwire they can get through.  The welded wire is easier to work with too.  We do dividers all the way to the ground with it, then put 2 foot high plywood along the bottom that can be removed for extra ventilation in midsummer if there are no roos or breeding setups in there.  You could go as large as 2" square welded wire if it is between runs and there is an outer defence/perimeter against weasels and other predators that can get in a 2" square. 

Our rooster pen this winter is 8 foot square coop (at night) and an 8 foot square run (go out in the day so in the day they have 16 by 8) and had about 14 in there all winter.  That works out to about 9 sq feet. I wouldn't go much less space than maybe 8 feet (including daytime movement or run area) that for the boys shut in all winter, if you have ultra docile or banties you could go less, we do have lots of space so are lucky, I just think they look crowded with much less.  If you go less, give them places to hide.

They have been really good with very little fighting, mostly due to them being laid back breeds and they are all hatched here and knew each other, and we had the 2 foot plywood up too so they couldn't see any hens.  Specky and one of the other EOs will jump up to see over it when I'm on the other side, but most can't see over. 

Our boys are in a 4 foot high house made with three plywood 4 by 8 wall panels (one with a door), 2 panels as ply wood roof.  The (2" by 4") roosts are 2 feet off the ground, 2 of them that run parallel  to the 4th wall that has a pop door and the top half of it is welded wire "window" with plywood at the bottom half, then the whole cube of the run is 8 by 4 panels of 1" welded wire.  I can take pics if you can't picture it.  I had the same setup last year.  I have the identical setup for my Chanteclers (with nesting boxes), they are the other half of this semi-detached housing 13 hens and one rooster now...just lost the one lad the other day.  They seem to have more room because they hens are smaller.

If you are stapling welded wire used a air compresser stapler gun, it goes so much faster!

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#9 2012-03-19 13:03:51

Lisa
Member
From: near Arthur, Ontario, Canada
Registered: 2011-07-05
Posts: 649

Re: 12'by 20' coop idea

Stefan,

Your shed is absolutely GORGEOUS!!! Where's the drooling smilie when you need it???

I haven't got anything useful to add - but I'd love to see pics when you are done! =D


When all else fails, go spend time with your chickens. :)

Pens are currently filled with Red Cuckoo (Marraduna) and Red Basque (Gorria) breeders, Spitz, and Seramas.

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#10 2012-03-19 16:21:22

Island Girl
Member
From: Qualicum Beach, Vancouver Isla
Registered: 2011-07-06
Posts: 1403

Re: 12'by 20' coop idea

:shock: OMG I love it!!! Now that makes me want a new coop in a real bad way. I suggested to hubby if we could finish our basement if our house doesn't sell and he said "I think you would enjoy a new coop more" .... Now I am thinking - get rid of the for sale sign and start on the coop :doI?:  No Monika No, the new property also has room for a new coop. Oh I am so not a patient person!! You are going to have so much fun with this coop. I am very happy for you!

XOX Monika

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#11 2012-03-19 16:25:37

Island Girl
Member
From: Qualicum Beach, Vancouver Isla
Registered: 2011-07-06
Posts: 1403

Re: 12'by 20' coop idea

I just showed your pictures to hubby and he asked how much $ it cost. Can you share that with us?

XOX Monika

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#12 2012-03-19 17:19:28

Susan
Administrator
From: Saskatoon, Sask, Canada
Registered: 2011-06-28
Posts: 2540

Re: 12'by 20' coop idea

Gorgeous for sure Gubi!

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#13 2012-03-20 00:27:33

gubi
Member
From: Walton
Registered: 2011-06-30
Posts: 1344
Website

Re: 12'by 20' coop idea

Thanks guys.  We think it is very nice too.  Now I just have to make it as useful as it is nice.  It cost me 3500 for what you see there.  It has 7 feet walls.  They called me on Friday 2 pm that they were ready for my wagon and by Saturday at lunch he called me again that it is ready for pickup. 

I'm still trying to make hinged roosts but they might get too steep in the 6 by 6 coop if I make them high.  I currently have my roosts about 6 feet up in the air in my old coop and one roost at waist height and they get up there and down no problem all of them are up at the 6 foot roosts!  I have noticed that in my EO coop that my EO's like to use the chicken ladder that comes down from the poo pit underneath the roosts and that is only waist high.  Right now I have to let the gravel settle and level it out a bit more as I can't get the doors open.


Herd of Brown Swiss, a few sheep, red cuckoo basque, Silverspangled Appenzeller Spitzhauben, ameraucanas(EE), Welsummer, broodie silkies and a few more heritage hens

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#14 2012-03-20 11:29:14

skeffling lavender farm
Administrator
From: Wiarton, ON, Canada
Registered: 2011-06-17
Posts: 2720
Website

Re: 12'by 20' coop idea

Can you hang one 5 1/2 to 6 feet off the ground say along the back of the coop and another one or two at waist height along the side?  In my big coop, our ceiling is 8 feet, roosts are 7 feet (hanging but not swinging).  We did use an old free wooden ladder horizontally before but we had a lot of feather picking going on with the twin rows so with went with a single roost. 

Then we have a three level ladder one with rungs at 1 foot, about 2.5 and 4.  It leans against the wall with some hardware, like a bolt and a loop. so we can take it right out for cleaning. 

Then another waist high roost in the opposite wall (suspended by chains, with two wooden bars attaching it to the wall about 2 feet long, so it doesn't swing as such, but there is some movement, and they dontl knock each other off when they get on it.  There are also two 6 and 7 foot off the ground tiny corner angled roosts (for the sumatras) but they like the long straight roosts more.

Of the 15 chickens in there, Driveby the EO, 5 Wheaten Ameraucanas, 5 chanties, 2 sumatras and a BLRW, the lowest they roost is 7 foot!  When we have 60 hens in there (it's 16 by 20)  the tops are filled first and the waist high ones gets used, lower pecking orders and the Pennies and orps never got higher than waist height.  I know silkies and maybe cochin banties need them like knee high.  But even the Dorkings would go up high like that.

The higher up you can get them, with deep bedding, the less the roost will be in your way for cleaning.  Don't put them too close to the walls or they will poop stripes down them, that's what ours did on white walls :funny:  When we clean and repaint, we'll have them 2 feet from the walls.

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#15 2012-03-20 15:12:17

Island Girl
Member
From: Qualicum Beach, Vancouver Isla
Registered: 2011-07-06
Posts: 1403

Re: 12'by 20' coop idea

:goodthread: gubi, thanks for sharing about your new coop. I love all the different ideas that are being put forth. Claire is so right about not putting the roosts too close to the wall, mine are and its a constant mess. Also if I counted the number of times I have hit my head on a roost ..... I love the idea of hinged roosts. What fun!!

XOX Monika

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#16 2012-03-20 17:07:42

skeffling lavender farm
Administrator
From: Wiarton, ON, Canada
Registered: 2011-06-17
Posts: 2720
Website

Re: 12'by 20' coop idea

I forgot I wrote this last year too. The top entry is roosts....

http://henhousesplans.blogspot.ca/

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#17 2012-03-20 19:22:15

appway
Member
From: Moosomin,SK
Registered: 2012-03-19
Posts: 237

Re: 12'by 20' coop idea

That looks great
am going to be watching so I can see how it turns out
we have 2 long grainary buildings here that are seperated into 4 different rooms each room is 20x20 so they are going to be the coops when we get them done going to put 10x10 runs  on each one
hope they will be nice
keep us posted on the progress of your new coop and thanks for sharing
joe

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