Chicks on 7-26 and a coop update

First of all, the coop. We've decided to keep all of our chickens. Part of the reason is because I can't pick and choose who stays and who goes. Also, my husband has promised eggs to several family members and 5 or 6 hens won't be able to keep up with that.

Since our coop is only big enough for 6 chickens at most, we decided to add onto it. Then when we realized that adding on won't be easy (with half the coop inside and the new part outside the run, so we can keep as much run space as possible) along with the fact that I'm tired of stooping over in there to clean the sand, we decided to just build a new coop. The old one will be kept for future batches of chicks to brood (so says my hubby). The new coop will be 5' x 10'. I'd love for it to be bigger but there isn't room in the area the run is in, and I'm not pushing my luck. I'll just be happy to be able to stand up in it.

We'll also be switching to the deep litter method, which means less work for me. I had planned to use it from the start but the prefab coop didn't allow for it because of how low the pop door is.

The floor is done so we need to buy lumber for the walls now and in the meantime I will get a nest box built (accessible from outside the coop AND run-yay). I'll try to post pictures of the progress as long as I remember to take them. Also, I went to the habitat for humanity restore shop today (two of them, actually) and picked up 5 storm windows for $35 total. Not bad! Now we'll have windows that will close in the winter but still let in light, and open in the summer to keep the breeze going. yay! The color will be the same as the old one.

And now the chicks. These pictures were taken on July 26th.

Everyone enjoying some cantaloupe guts:

Buddies Alice and Belle:

And another picture of one of them:

Cosmo, who is now crowing a little bit (sounds strangled, but it's a crow):

Juliet, looking pretty as always:

Everyone curious about the dog (and she is equally curious about them):

1 comment:

  1. Hi Gale.

    I'm glad to hear your are getting a new coop. I can't wait to see the pictures!! I wish I had a bigger one as well. Mine is elevated, so cleaning is a snap. I'm sure you probably did research on the deep litter method. I have to say...are you SURE you want to get rid of sand? It is soooooooo clean. It smells so fresh. The flies are never present with sand and it is so very sanitary for the Henny Pennys. Sand keeps the coop dry which is good for their respiratory health. Deep litter is very habitable to mites and other bugs. Sand discourages this. I use a kitty litter scoop to clean our coop. The floor is 4x4 and it literally takes me less than one minute per day. The pine shavings are so smelly when there is poop in it. Even while adding layer after layer, the chickens get poop on their feathers and it makes for a icky mess. Not to mention, you will have shavings stuck to the bottom of your shoes every time you leave the coop. Sand is so easy Gale. I think you should stick with it.

    My girls free range all day and spend very little time in their run. Before winter hits, I plan to put sand in their run as well (so it will be more sanitary for them). I also plan to put clear plastic up around the run to protect it from the snow. I'm going to make a homemade pooper scooper/sifter at the end of a pole using very stiff wire so cleaning will be a snap even in winter. I hope you will reconsider the deep litter method. It really is less sanitary not to mention more costly.

    Here are some photos of my coop. It's still a work in progress, but I really love the benefits of sand. Also, you'll see why I like the color of your coop!

    You had mentioned that you were building nest boxes accessible from outside the coop and run. That is wonderful and how mine is set up. We are still waiting for our first egg, but the nest boxes are in and waiting for the girls to lay. I use kitty litter boxes that I got super cheap at Wal-Mart for the next boxes. I figure they will be really easy to clean. You can see them in this next photo...