We have been working on the chicken coop, it seems like, forever. This cool to cold weather and rain just seem to hold on and has made working consistently on the coop very tough. But we did make enough headway this week to at least move our newest family members to their permanent home.
We are still awaiting arrival of our automatic door. I opted to buy rather than fabricate since I have other projects that are in dire need of work and on a tight timetable. Here are some pics of the 90% completed project.
The structure is built from pallets I picked up free on craigslist, except for the framing boards and the pressure treated planks used to hold up the fencing.
The coop itself is 2X6 framed with r-19 insulation in the walls and r-38 in the ceiling. The 2 windows are single hung double pane, low-e, also from craigslist. All the flooring, including nesting boxes are vinyl covered to reduce saturation of wood from chicken waste.
The run is deep mulch (wood chips) from a friend that owns a tree service, also free. Inside the coop is a layer of woods chips covered with pine shavings. The six nesting boxes are layered in straw and pine shavings.
I am pretty happy with the results for spending only a couple of hundred dollars. My biggest expense is for the solar powered automatic door/with battery backup and wifi. With the coop actually located about a mile from our house, I thought it best to automate the process as much as possible. This next couple of weeks will be a pain, having to open and close the coop each day physically, but once the door comes in I won’t have to rush over every day to insure they get out or back in. I will be able to monitor door activity from the computer in my office. I will probably add a couple of cameras as well to keep an eye on the goings on and watch for foxes, which are abundant in the area.
I think they look pretty happy!