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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Auburn, NY
    Posts
    526

    Default Chicken Coop recommendations???

    I am looking for a chicken coop but those I am reviewing from tractor supply dont give me warm fuzzies. Planning to get 3 or 4 at the most Rhode ISland Red (heritage variety with black tail feathers as I recall). They will need to be penned up in the cage and not free range around my back yard. No fox around here. I once saw a racoon but really I dont think hes local. Point being I dont have to worry much about predators.

    Price range would like to stay below 300. Below 200 would be better but I dont think realistic.

    I am not adverse to attempting to build one, but my wood skills are non existent and my wood tools are about zero. But.. buying wood tools may be a better option than buying an expensive coop.

    Anyone have recommendations? Or an anti recommendation? Like "Dont buy xyz brand model 123 "

    Thanks !!!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Essex IA USA
    Posts
    38

    Default Re: Chicken Coop recommendations???

    Do you realize you are on a site for Honey bees? See backyardchickens.com There is plenty of info there.

    D

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Auburn, NY
    Posts
    526

    Default Re: Chicken Coop recommendations???

    Didnt know about that site. thanks.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    48,259

    Default Re: Chicken Coop recommendations???

    Some of it depends on your goal. Do you want something the chickens live in? Or something they just go in at night? Something you can move around the yard for them to eat the weeds? Something fixed in one place? For baby chicks I used to have a 2"x12" box about 8' square with a scrap of plywood on one end for shade and to get out of the rain and chicken wire over the rest. I moved it around the yard with baby chicks in it so they could graze. It would probably work for chickens if you make it a foot taller and out of plywood to make it lighter. Then I'd probably put a two by in the corners to screw the plywood to. Mostly my chickens have always been free range, but it's nice to put them in at night to keep them from the coyotes and keep them from roosting in the garage or someplace you don't want them...
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Colorado Springs, CO United States
    Posts
    588

    Default Re: Chicken Coop recommendations???

    Quote Originally Posted by dadux View Post
    Do you realize you are on a site for Honey bees?
    Pretty sure he knew this
    Please excuse me, I am now free to go manage & treat :)
    my ladies the best way I know how.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Laurel Hill, Fl
    Posts
    507

    Default Re: Chicken Coop recommendations???

    If you build one, build the roosts well of the ground so you can put a shelf under it and put in poop trays. 90% of the poop in the coop comes while the chickens are roosting, The ability to take a tray out and dump it vs raking or shoveling all the time can not be overstated. Poop trays are sold on amazon at Boot trays. :-) That and an automatic door makes keeping chickens fun, not a chore.
    good luck, and backyardchickens is a great site. I got my automatic door (timer model) from ebay.
    Robbin NW Florida(8A) / 14 hives / 3 nd Year / 4 TF - 10T {OAV}

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Dexter,MO,USA
    Posts
    144

    Default Re: Chicken Coop recommendations???

    I built my own 8' x 12' x 8' tall shed and has an automatic door. What i ran into was the high cost of exterior coverings. So i went to a local saw mill and bought fresh Cypress, stacked and dried it for $300.00

    Oh, i built hoping the wife would eventually give up the chickens and i would have a nice tool shed.

    I will have to find a picture of the Ala Grande Chicken Coop; as you can see i am pretty proud of it. And did not use a drop of Silicone sealer to boot.

    G.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Auburn, NY
    Posts
    526

    Default Re: Chicken Coop recommendations???

    Keep it coming.. Good stuff. My goal is to have for them to live in. I cant do free range. Moving it around would be great, but not mandatory. Ill keep in mind the tray. That sounds like excellent advice.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Eldersburg, MD, USA
    Posts
    196

    Default Re: Chicken Coop recommendations???

    I have a chicken coop that my husband built for me, with my specifications, and an enclosed run (scroll down):
    https://suburbanrancher.wordpress.co...irty-chickens/

    All openings are covered with 1/2" hardware cloth, no automatic door needed as the pop doors remain open all the time. I do not need to enclose them every night because they are already enclosed. DO NOT USE CHICKEN WIRE. Chicken wire only keeps chickens in and does nothing to keep predators out. And you do have predators, you just don't see them. You will when you get chickens.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Pepperell, MA.
    Posts
    4,061

    Default Re: Chicken Coop recommendations???

    I built my own and used an old double hung window (separating it into two sashes) for two side windows. I built my own door. The real cost was the siding and the roofing. It's been great and I sized it so that one, 3 cubic foot bag of shavings covered the floor. Right now it houses 15 chickens and opens into a 20 X 20 pen with a gate. If I open the gate, they get two acres to roam on. It has a bump out with four roosting boxes and an outside accessible hinged cover so that we can gather eggs without going into the coop or pen. It also has an exterior storage area for scratch, etc. The framing was old 2X4's. I bought new 2x6's for the floor joists and I had scrap plywood for the flooring. The roof sheathing was scrap plywood but I splurged on wiring it so it has an inside light, ceiling receptacles, a timer and an outside GFCI outlet.

    My one regret is that I should have put in more ventilation and I wish it was bigger.
    "My wife always wanted girls. Just not thousands and thousands of them......"

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Eldersburg, MD, USA
    Posts
    196

    Default Re: Chicken Coop recommendations???

    Ravenseye, I love the idea of an outlet by the coop. I wish I could that. It would come in handy for the deicer I use during the winter and the heat lamp when I brood the chicks.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Dexter,MO,USA
    Posts
    144

    Default Re: Chicken Coop recommendations???

    Quote Originally Posted by suburbanrancher View Post
    Ravenseye, I love the idea of an outlet by the coop. I wish I could that. It would come in handy for the deicer I use during the winter and the heat lamp when I brood the chicks.
    If you had a outlet, your structure would by definition be permanent. in our state that means you pay property tax on it. argh.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
    Location
    DuPage County, Illinois USA
    Posts
    10,218

    Default Re: Chicken Coop recommendations???

    There are many ways to skin the cat. Simply have the outlet right next to the structure, not attached.
    Regards, Barry

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Rosebud Missouri
    Posts
    285

    Default Re: Chicken Coop recommendations???

    Somebody gave me 23 hens. I took a 10x10 cheap metal shead on concreet and built a couple roost. Just two peices of plywood cut in a wedge with boards on it. I had shelves that I just enclosed for nest and put a trailer window for ventelation. Just cut a hole and a couple of screws and caulk. I used a couple of kitchen cabnets and chicken wire and raise 40 incubated chicks. I clean once in spring and once in fall and just put straw down every so often in the interim. I use an extention cord during winter. Chickens can be very happy with very little. My chickens do have the run of the place during the day though and they will get in and poop on everything.

    They have the lazy bee keeper and I am the lazy chicken keeper. They are fun as heck to watch though.
    gww

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Pepperell, MA.
    Posts
    4,061

    Default Re: Chicken Coop recommendations???

    Quote Originally Posted by suburbanrancher View Post
    Ravenseye, I love the idea of an outlet by the coop. I wish I could that. It would come in handy for the deicer I use during the winter and the heat lamp when I brood the chicks.
    I run a de-icer for the waterer and a highly protected heat lamp on a thermal switch. Although I don't like to do it, I put them on lights until the holidays are over so we have eggs. I take the timer off come the first of the year. Having an overhead light also helps for those nights I get home late and need to tend to the chickens. Finally, a while back I had a flock suffering from chronic respiratory disease. I hadn't quarantined a new arrival and she infected nearly everyone. You could hear them all gurgling as they were breathing on the roost at night. On a vets advice, I ran a small hot water vaporizer inside the coop with Vet RX in it. It helped a LOT and I was glad I had power in there. I didn't lose a bird.
    "My wife always wanted girls. Just not thousands and thousands of them......"

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