Chickens Home Sweet Home

by Amy Stafford on July 10, 2012

I’m hosting a tour today through the home of the Backyard chicken gang that lives in my backyard. My chicken coop was built by Horizon Structures based out of Pennsylvania.  My coop is a 5 x 6′  that is built to hold 12-15 chickens, though with my chickens being free range it can hold 15-18.  It is over a year old and I couldn’t be happier, though I really wish we had ordered the size up, though my husband does not.

What is the best thing about my chicken coop?  The Dawn to Dusk Door.  A metal door with guides that has a battery powered all-in-one light sensor, so it opens when the sun rises and closes when the sun sets. That means you don’t have to run out in your PJ’s in the dark when you forgot to shut the coop door, or be sitting out  with friends at dinner worrying about getting home to lock up the coop before something bad happens. The second best thing about my chicken coop?  The poop drawer.  Anyone who has ever cleaned a chicken coop will  want their very own poop drawer after they see this! :) When my chickens roost, the underside of the roost bar is sealed off with wire so that they can not get under.  What is underneath the roost bar is a poop drawer that catches their droppings.

Now the genius part you can access the drawer from the outside back of the coop by a hinged panel (with latches). The drawer is lined with Glasbord a fiberglass reinforced plastic, that makes cleaning the drawer extremely easy.

You slide out the drawer, brush or scrub off the poop into a basket of pan, place the cleaned drawer back in the coop and throw the chicken poop into the compost.  Yes, it is that easy-3-5 minutes and your done with your weekly coop cleaning!

I use a small utility broom and brush the draw, sliding the poo into this rubbermaid box

The box makes transferring the poo to the compost bin a breeze.

Compost bin which sits between garden and coop.

The third best thing about my chicken coop?  We added a covered back porch.  I found that the chickens didn’t have enough room to gain cover from the elements, rain and snow.  So we ordered two pieces of galvanized  metal that matches the roof of my coop, built a wood frame for support and attached it to the back of coop with hinges.  This allows me to be able to lift it to get to the poop drawer and fill feeder and waterer.

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You can usually find me in my garden, the kitchen, at the gym or spending time with my family. I love sharing recipes, gardening and exercise tips and stories of my backyard chickens and beekeeping.
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{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Chris July 10, 2012 at 10:27 am

I’ve seen this coop for sale online. It seems to be popular. One day we’ll have an automatic door :)

Looks great!

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AmySue July 10, 2012 at 1:50 pm

Thanks Chris, You must get an auto door, life is so much simpler with one!

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knithappiness July 10, 2012 at 10:47 pm

Thanks for sharing your coop pictures. Tonight we were adding windows to ours, and I used your pictures to show my husband. We love the lean to also, and will be adding something similar to that as well! I, too, am getting ready for our first annual Coop tour. Good luck with yours!

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AmySue July 11, 2012 at 6:38 am

Just checked out your coop- CUTE! I am sure your chickie babes will love it!

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knithappiness July 10, 2012 at 10:48 pm

One more question: What if the hens aren’t inside when the dawn-to-dusk door automatically shuts?

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AmySue July 11, 2012 at 6:36 am

For the first few weeks I kept an eye on them to make sure that they would all make it in before it shut. The door makes a noise and closes slowly, so if anyone is still outside they hurry up in. Though they usually are all in long before it starts to close.

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thesalemgarden July 12, 2012 at 10:23 pm

I love the automatic door and the poop drawer.. I’ll have to show my husband your set-up, it’s great!

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AmySue July 13, 2012 at 7:06 am

Love them both, makes life so much easier!!

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Christie July 14, 2012 at 4:29 pm

Poop drawer – brilliant! I love the looks of your setup. We will, one day, be using our current coop only for brooding chicks and for the rare quarantine – I will covet yours in the meantime as “primary coop”! :)

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AmySue July 15, 2012 at 7:04 am

The poop drawer makes life so much easier!!

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