LumberJocks

Chicken Coop #3: Walls are up and details are ... getting there. Chicks will move in soon

  • Advertise with us
Blog entry by ConnieReed posted 06-08-2016 04:09 PM 1765 reads 0 times favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 2: Work fast, the chicks have landed Part 3 of Chicken Coop series no next part

I’m almost done! Well, almost done enough to move the chick-lets into their new home – I have a feeling that I’ll be playing with (ie. decorating and upgrading this) for some time. The future outdoor run and any decor and fancy accessories will come later. This is really coming together well! I’ve learned so much, and by using reclaimed materials where possible, I’ve saved a ton of money as well. The total cost of this (including new and specialty gear) is more or less $800 (including the run, not yet built). That might even be including the price of the chicks. I may try to dig up all the receipts (not sure if it’s possible!) and verify. The important thing is, I’ve had so much fun with this! I may actually get to painting today!

This is the view of the coop from the house. The theme is ‘beach shack’ and I have some grey-ish blue paint that I plan on lightening with white paint, and thinning with water, to make a nice grey-wash. It should cover and protect the wood a bit, but keep some of the unique textures of the various old planks.

This will be the front of the coop, from the chicken’s view, ie. this is the side where the run will attach.

Feeder access door – (kid shown for scale only, not part of coop ;) ) I’ve installed latches on this door now, as well as all other doors. We have raccoons… and foxes… and hawks…

This is a view of the cleaning access door and the water tank tower. I have a bad back, so having a large door, up off the ground, should really help out when it comes to cleaning, etc. The tank (cooler) will provide water to both the coop and to the run (two fountains inside, three outside). Having it elevated like this gives it good water pressure.

This back window leaked a bit in heavy rains, and the nest box, hinge area, also leaked. I figured that a decorative overhang should help prevent this. These shelves were also made from scraps, including the scroll work. My dad passed away 12 years ago, but he left these practice (his throw away) scrollwork braces behind. I kept them, assuming I might find a use for them. I did! I’ll need to caulk the planks I used to make these, to help direct water away from the coop, but I was out there in the last heavy rain and they already make a huge difference!

Also, I found these awesome little solar lights at Target on sale – $13! So kitschy! Perfect for a beach shack. Also, by hanging them near the back window, away from the run, I’m hoping that the little bit of light that goes into the coop from this side, will light up the interior of the coop, just a little, which should entice the chickens to leave the run as it gets dark at night and head into the (comparitively) brighter coop. I probably should have waited until AFTER I painted to staple these up, but I was eager to put them into action.

Inside the coop, we have a feeder (I’ll probably add a second one just like this, they will have caps – keep birds, poop, mice, etc out), roosts (I need to make a few more, probably long poles), nest boxes (two at 12”x12” and one at 12”x24”), and the auto-waterer cups. Everything is made with an eye toward being able to remove it and clean it. Even the partitions for the nest boxes and the privacy curtains.

I still have a few things to do. I need to make a couple more roosts. I need to caulk the places where the roof panels meet (I used 4 metal sheets from Lowes – 8’x2.3’ – perfect fit! About $13 each). I need to tie down the PVC pipes on the plumbing with strapping to prevent movement. And I need to set up a way to open and close the run door from outside of the main access door. I also need to install wire mesh around the three sides of the coop away from the run. I intend for them to be able to play under there, for shade and shelter, once the run is attached, but I want to do the nailing of that bit before they are in the coop. That might be scary. And I need to paint.

The chicks are likely to be out there by this weekend :) Now that the storm that was threatening has skipped over us, I may actually meet this goal sooner than later! And good thing too. We have mostly bantam (small sized) chicks – only three are normal sized birds – and they are growing. So totally spoiled too!

This is the largest of the birds, a Speckled Sussex.

-- "My plate is full, I can't possibly take on anything more... Oh, look! A project!"



11 comments so far

View stefang's profile

stefang

15512 posts in 2800 days


#1 posted 06-08-2016 04:27 PM

Looks good. I think your tenants will enjoy it. I am wondering what your plans are for the chickens. You seem to fond of them to eat them. Maybe for the eggs?

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View ConnieReed's profile

ConnieReed

59 posts in 775 days


#2 posted 06-08-2016 04:50 PM

These are just for the eggs, and for entertainment. As it stands now, my daughter would probably not allow me to purposely buy a chicken to raise for the purpose of eating it! Meat chicken comes from the store! :D However, if any of these turn out to be an aggressive rooster (they can’t sex the small bantam chicks so you get what you get when ordering) then it will be food. In that case, she might change her mind… maybe? I’m not convinced I’d want to get meat-chickens anyway. Some of them mature so fast that they’re almost too heavy to walk by about 9 weeks of age. That sounds awful!

We purposefully ordered breeds that are mainly for eggs, and that are known as good ‘pet’ birds. Silkies, Cochins, and Speckled Sussex. (edit – we also have a black tailed Japanese bantam. These chicks really are a hobby/yard art!) One of them is a breed called ‘Sicilian Buttercup’, but we’re raising her to give to a friend.

These are our first chickens ever. We’re still learning! So far, so good.

-- "My plate is full, I can't possibly take on anything more... Oh, look! A project!"

View JoeinGa's profile

JoeinGa

7483 posts in 1473 days


#3 posted 06-08-2016 08:32 PM

Looks good Connie. But wait, dont you live “Up Nort”? Wont the plastic plumbing freeze in the winter?
.
.
And paint? OH NO! Leave it that way, and tell folks that it’s “Shabby Chic” LOL
.

-- Perform A Random Act Of Kindness Today ... Pay It Forward

View rejo55's profile

rejo55

186 posts in 1708 days


#4 posted 06-08-2016 09:18 PM

Good lookin chikin house. All you need now is a few Araucanas. They will lay eggs to match the decor.

Have a good’un,
Joe

-- rejo55, East Texas

View ConnieReed's profile

ConnieReed

59 posts in 775 days


#5 posted 06-09-2016 02:38 AM


Looks good Connie. But wait, dont you live “Up Nort”? Wont the plastic plumbing freeze in the winter?
And paint? OH NO! Leave it that way, and tell folks that it s “Shabby Chic” LOL
- JoeinGa

We’re in Maryland, and yeah…. freezing might be an issue. My neighbor and I are in the same boat here… same idea with the waterers. We’ve got the summer to figure some things out. Insulation around the pipes would help some. It doesn’t stay in a deep freeze for very long, although last winter we had quite the blizzard. We’re thinking of those submersible heaters, like for fountains or livestock tubs. Maybe solar powered. Possibly some way to circulate the water as well.

I don’t plan on doing a thick coat of paint. I want to do more of a wash. It’s just a little too multi-color for me! Besides, in this area, with all the plant-life and humidity, if I don’t paint it a color I like, it will soon turn a nice mildew green! :D A grey-blue paint, whitened and thinned, should give all these random planks a more cohesive look, like they were meant to be together!, but keep the textures for a good seaside weathered look. (just because I don’t live at the beach, doesn’t mean I can’t have a beach shack!)

-- "My plate is full, I can't possibly take on anything more... Oh, look! A project!"

View ConnieReed's profile

ConnieReed

59 posts in 775 days


#6 posted 06-09-2016 02:59 AM



Good lookin chikin house. All you need now is a few Araucanas. They will lay eggs to match the decor.
Have a good un,
Joe
- rejo55

Thank you! We already have more chickens that I intended! My daughter really wanted the Speckled Sussex. They’re supposed to be friendly, full of character, and pretty good about watching for predators. Good pets and layers. I really wanted the Silkies… unlike my daughter who actually did research, I didn’t really have a good reason… something about ‘long haired freaky people’?? I dunno, they’re pretty cool looking! The hatchery would only ship the Silkies, which are bantams, in a minimum order of 15 bantams. The three Sussex and one other large-sized bird (for somebody else) we ordered didn’t count toward the total. We had to get 15 bantams if I wanted any Silkies. So, I went to some of my neighbors and asked if they wanted in on the order. One of them actually ordered two Araucanas… the bantam version! They are very pretty birds. We ended up ordering 21 birds… the hatchery threw in four extras and so 25 arrived (holy cow! Little peepers everywhere!) We ended up losing two of them, but of the 23 left, we’re keeping 14.

-- "My plate is full, I can't possibly take on anything more... Oh, look! A project!"

View Ted Ewen's profile

Ted Ewen

187 posts in 532 days


#7 posted 06-09-2016 06:26 AM

I’d recommend raising the feeder trays to about the bird’s back level. That will save you loads in waste and contamination.

-- Show us a man who never makes a mistake and we will show a man who never makes anything. The capacity for occasional blundering is inseparable from the capacity to bring things to pass.

View ConnieReed's profile

ConnieReed

59 posts in 775 days


#8 posted 06-09-2016 04:22 PM

That’s a good idea, Ted, and I’ve been toying with the idea. I’m just not sure what I want/need to do yet. This bowl would not work as a raised feeder, and I was thinking of U or V shaped PVC pieces to alter the set up. I also have to wait and see how tall the smaller birds are going to be. The Silkies appear to be more medium sized than tiny bantams (compared to the bantam Cochins and regular sized Sussex). The Cochin will be smaller, and the one Japanese bantam is going to be tiny. We don’t know yet if it’s male or female, but even the biggest males are only about a pound of bird! I’ll give it a month for them to grow, and for me to watch their eating habits (how well they share… do I need something with two feeders on one pipe, or two feeders spaced out?, etc) and then I’ll re-evaluate.

I like this idea…

-- "My plate is full, I can't possibly take on anything more... Oh, look! A project!"

View ConnieReed's profile

ConnieReed

59 posts in 775 days


#9 posted 06-09-2016 04:38 PM

One more photo, as this sort of goes with this post and not really as a stand alone. This is the coop at night with the ‘beach shack party lights’. The lights are hung uneven on purpose… had to allow for the feeder door access, and I also wanted lights visible through the window, to give a little low light inside the coop. The run will be on the opposite side of the coop and I hope the light will help attract the birds inside in the evenings as it gets darker out.

-- "My plate is full, I can't possibly take on anything more... Oh, look! A project!"

View JoeinGa's profile

JoeinGa

7483 posts in 1473 days


#10 posted 06-09-2016 07:41 PM

Geeze, Mood lighting for chickens …. Who knew?
.
.

-- Perform A Random Act Of Kindness Today ... Pay It Forward

View ConnieReed's profile

ConnieReed

59 posts in 775 days


#11 posted 06-10-2016 04:18 PM

Well, the theme is ‘beach shack’ and what’s a proper beach house without party lights? Besides, there are perks. I posted this photo on Facebook and my friend replied that she’s coming over and bringing the margaritas!

-- "My plate is full, I can't possibly take on anything more... Oh, look! A project!"

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics

HomeRefurbers.com