Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Chicken Coop

We added a chicken house in the north barn. We weighed our options between a whole new build, or adding into an existing building. The whole new build is more expensive and takes so much work in Ks with our windy conditions.
I dont have a lot of pictures of the building, it didnt take us long at all. It is a 2x4 frame walls which are level, the barn isnt, but we leveled the new room.
The barn has a big sliding door, we open it first then open their little door. If there was some reason we didnt want them outside for the day we can just open their room.
Still building, we built this the same way we built our new landing. Carried the tools down in the truck and used it as our workstation.
The finished product, I meant to do these in different order but it didnt come out so. Frank took the door off of his shop as some friends gave us a better shop door. They were getting rid of it so it was a free door!
The lighting was poor at this time, sorry for the glare. This is a brooding box that was on our property when we bought it. We lay it with wood chips and they will lay their eggs in, we take them out from the back.

The water, they kick up the wood chips into it if it isnt on something. This waterer was expensive and so worth it, it holds about 4 days of water and its very easy to clean and fill. It fills from the top unlike the cheaper waterers we had, you had to unscrew the white top from the red, turn it up and fill it. As chickens poop on everything, that was gross!

I bought a hanging feeder, but then they perched on it and pooped in it. So we put a lid on it. They perched on the lid, swung and dumped their food. Now it is hung firmly to this 2x2 and the lid is hinged. We raise it up, fill it and dont have to worry about poopy or spilled food.

This is the back of the brooding area, you can open it up from the simple latch and gather eggs!

And this is with it open, it will lay flat to the wall if the bag of wood chips isnt in the way. We have golf balls in the roosts, our chickens are almost old enough to lay. Golf balls are supposed to guide them to the laying area.

The chickens spend most of their day out of doors, we let them out in the morning and they go home on their own at dusk. We close them in to prevent predators from eating them, and they have a light that stays on until 8:30 pm. Chickens need 12-14 hrs of daylight to lay, as well as a warm house in the winter. This is well insulated and fits the bill.

Here is their little door, Frank made the frame with a dido blade on the table saw. Makes the edge look routered, it is very professional looking!

That is our finished coop. It can sleep quite a few birds because they have so much outdoor space. They have many homemade perches, all made from slender branches. They prefer to perch on round branches because its natural for their feet.
All told the coop cost about 85 $. We used 2x4s, plyboard, foam insulation, a free door, screws and a few nails. We already own the tools, and there were 2 walls and the cieling already in place because we used an existing building.

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