Not everything goes as planned.

coop_archesI knew the shade cover / protection on the run would not support snow and was already planning a different cover for the winter months but what I had not figured in for spring and summer was the hail.  How did I forget the hail?  The first hailstorm came through and filled the shade cloth, weighing it down like fish in a net. Obviously some extra support was in order.

3 hours and some common materials and we now have an arched frame to support the shade netting. Still need to see how it does when the hail is coming down but it should allow all but the worst hail to roll off rather than “pooling” and weighing it down.  Not sure if they will support a “solid” sheathing for the winter yet but we shall see how it handles the hail first and then decide.

With the cover now taken care of we can focus on getting the last bit of stitching done on the sides.

Coop Upgrades

Poop Deck

The weather hasn’t been warm enough to move the overgrowing chicks into the coop yet so upgrades are being done. First, a necessary addition for ease of cleaning, a poop deck was added. It’s basically drawers under the roosts that can be pulled out to scrape the poop into a bucket. Weekly the drawers can be pulled completely out and be sprayed down with a hose.

Electricity has been brought in with 3 outlets. We’ve added heat lamps and plugged them into thermostat plugs. The lamps turn off once it reaches a certain temperature.

Electric Coop

We found the temperature swings are too wide inside the coop so added some reflective insulation liner to the ceiling, It will probably become more beneficial in the summer when it get’s hot. Chicken’s can die of heat easier than the cold.

Insulated Coop

Hoping to move the chickens into their coop soon as they are starting to jump high! They basement brooder won’t hold them in for much longer!

The Coop Room

Coop room

We just finished up the inside of the coop, minus the linoleum we plan to put down to ease the clean up process. We put small perches in front of the nesting boxes and the raised the roosts. But the best addition is this wall to divide a small room we can use for multiple purposes including storage for feed and cleaning supplies, separating an injured chicken, or even a brooding space.

The outside is fully painted, including the trim, leaving the inside bare. Less chemicals for the chickens to get exposed to.

Unfortunately we ran out of energy so the linoleum will have to wait until later in the week.

Painting the Coop

Coop Painting

While the primer tan the coop came with is adequate, we decided the coop should be a light color to reflect the hot summer sun and should match the color of the primary barn and sheds. Yup, a boring grey, but it’s functional. The grey is complete but the white trim will be next. You notice there is a large space on the front. We’re thinking a great place for the logo, or a new chicken specific logo…….Hmmmmm. Let the creative juices start flowing!

The Chicken Coop Is Here!

It was a LONG day waiting for the truck with the new custom built chicken coop to arrive! We got a call that the truck was in the shop with an issue and they would be delayed until 5:00 PM. It was getting cold and dark and then just before the sun went down……..there it was! The glorious truck pulling the future home of my many happy chickens!

Coop on trailer

The trailer was adjustable and moved front, back, left and right with a remote control, until the coop was in just the right position on the pad to gradually lower it down. It was amazing to watch. Then….boom! It landed and is now ready for action!

Coop on Pad

On the inside you can see the nesting boxes and the roosts. On the outside you can see the door to the back of the nesting boxes. It’s a sneaky way to get the eggs out from under the chickens without stepping foot inside the coop.

Inside Coop

The chicks will be coming in a month. Plenty of time to finish the details in the coop!