I have been looking at different coop/run designs for some time and I think that I leaning heavily to building some variant of this design.
This is the Wichita Cabin Coop from the Baldessari clan over at Backyard Chickens. I may have to make some compromises to keep costs down, but I think chickens would be happy in this establishment.
November 29, 2012 at 10:19 pm
Dude, You seriously buried my brilliant post about S and M in the ivy league for discussing chickens? Your priorities are out of whack man. Way out of whack.
November 29, 2012 at 10:55 pm
Wow! As a once and (hopefully) future keeper of the chickens I would endorse that coop. It's lovely.
November 29, 2012 at 11:46 pm
If money is not an issue, do it! For our first foray into the world of backyard chickens, we jerry-rigged 2 wooden doghouses together, but it would be nice to be able to walk in and lift an outside latch to collect eggs.
November 30, 2012 at 12:19 am
November 30, 2012 at 1:12 am
If I were a chicken, I would be happy in that "establishment" – as long as I could go out during the day. Seriously, though, as long as you don't have a problem with wild predators (or for that matter, domestic dogs that run loose), the coop should serve you well. Make sure the wire is good and strong & secured, otherwise even raccoons could get in (they are hell on chickens).
November 30, 2012 at 1:22 am
Yet another reason the terrorists hate America. Our chickens have nicer houses then they do. I should send u a picture of my coop. It consists of eight 2×4's and 5 boards. Cheap and the eggs taste just as good. The chickens don't know any better
November 30, 2012 at 3:45 am
A well made coop is worth every penny. This looks easily accessible several different ways and of good material, easy to clean and maintain. The latches appear secure and easy for your children to use properly. The only other issue you need to make sure is addressed is proper food storage. I love backyard chickens and sister forum backyard herds!
P.S. glad you buried that S&M article!
November 30, 2012 at 9:35 am
We have tried several coops and my advice is to make it simple and easy to clean. Don't spend too much $ and time, as chicken will s**t on an expensive coop as much as they will on a cheap one.
November 30, 2012 at 12:46 pm
Do not get too attached to your chickens. They are on the bottom rung of the food chain. Every animal tries to kill and eat them…our first chicken was ransacked by a coyote yesterday, and daughter is extremely upset.
November 30, 2012 at 1:57 pm
Looks nice! But seriously, chickens don't really need an expensive fancy coop. They will be happiest if you can let them in the yard to free-range sometimes.
November 30, 2012 at 5:40 pm
We've had a version of this model for nearly five years. It's worked out really well. Just make sure you stick to the number of hens the coop will allow. Chickens are like potato chips, you can't have just one (or two or three). We use this for our bantams birds, but we just added a super-sturdy Amish built model to house our "big girls."
Yes, watch the predators that will show up when they discover you have everyone's favorite meal in your backyard. Even here at the Jersey Shore we have Red Tailed Hawks that stalk our birds when we're letting them run in the backyard. We take turns "chicken herding" when the birds are out of the safety of their pens. Six of our fourteen birds have near-death experiences with hawks.
As a testament to the sturdiness of the coops, both our coops and our hens escaped the recent hurricane unscathed.
November 30, 2012 at 6:43 pm
It's a beautiful coop! Like Anonymous above said. . . abide by the limit so you don't crowd too many hens in.
December 2, 2012 at 3:31 am
How many hens do you plan to have? We've been LOVING our chicken adventure since we started in March. Our daughter is now in 4-H poultry club. I read a LOT on Backyard Chickens on coops (now about everything else).
If you're building it yourself, use hardware cloth on the lower portion of the run (racoons can reach in through chicken wire holes). Still check out Craig's list or other local sources. You might be able to buy one cheaper than the materials if you find a local builder or sale.
December 2, 2012 at 4:21 am
Like Amanda, I'd like to say thanks for burying the s&m article. convictions about chastity and human dignity prevent any desire to find laffs in that subject matter.
December 3, 2012 at 3:44 am
Just can't keep too many! Use horse bedding (pine chips) for the inside. Cleaning can then be very infrequent. We only clean ours totally out in the spring, just adding more chips as necessary. We do have a clean out door at the end of their roosting area, so we clean that out more frequently. My husband made it so you can just lift the whole roost up (it's one piece built kind of like stairs)and secure it to a hook on the wall so it's easy to shovel out the dirty chips underneath and add clean ones. Good luck! We really like the characteristics of the Australorps.