The droppings will also get packed onto your chickens’ feet when they walk around. Almost all of my chicken coops have plywood floors, and I’ve had no problems with them. Must be applied correctly or won’t seal or harden well. A chicken coop should be located where drainage is good and not around wet or problem areas of your garden. Heat lamps or flat panel heaters which are not hot to the touch are both great ideas. Inside of the coop, hang a thick stick or a piece of wood to give the chickens a roosting area, and add a nesting box filled with straw for every 4-5 laying hens. Wire floors on the ground allow too much moisture to raise into the coops. Or you if want to buy a high-quality prebuilt coop with shingle roofing, I recommend Rita Marie’s Chicken Coops. My chickens feet are clean and because of the Diatomaceous Earth, free of bugs. A chicken coop with a good design will make a significant contribution to the health and well being of your flock and, in the long run, reduce the cost of raising chickens. Moveable chicken tractors provide a great way to rotate your chickens through your yard. However, if you are using bedding in your chicken coop, which is highly recommended in most cases, you really don’t need this extra step. Several different flooring materials are suitable for chicken coops, including concrete, plywood, and linoleum. This material tends to be very low quality. You can see these eaves on one of my coops pictured below. You can use leaves, straw, or wood shavings, but most chicken keepers use wood shavings. Chickens do not eat and drink overnight, from the moment they go to sleep on the roost to the moment they land on the floor in the morning they rely on fed stored in the crop. This stuff gets recommended over and over again in chicken keeping forums as the best chicken coop floor liner. I clean my coop once a day and put in new sand twice a year. Because the chickens aren’t able to walk on the droppings and pack them down, they should be easy to remove. For more on this topic, see my article, Why you should never buy a coop from Amazon or Walmart. These corrugated panels are similar to plastic panels, but are of a lower quality than most plastic panels. Check out this article for more information. The more time your chickens spend in the coop, the more susceptible they will be to foot and leg injuries sustained from walking or even resting on wire. Check out the photo below to see how poorly this material fared on one of these coops after being outside for just one year. Vinyl and linoleum are incredibly slippery. You are so satisfying and easy to clean with everything from a broom to a pressure washer2. Check out my chicken coop video course and plans. I don’t recommend this in areas where the temperature gets to freezing or below. Plywood covered in a weatherproof material, such as metal, plastic, or shingles, is the best option for chicken coop roofing as it offers protection both from predators and the elements. QL must be greater than or equal to 10 to load a chicken. Make sure you look at the Material Safety Data Sheet for any glue you are thinking of using in order to see if it’s toxic or not. Painted wood or plywood has all the pros of wood floors, and one additional pro. I had to use a pressure washer to remove all the debris. If your chickens’ feathers get wet, they won’t be able to stay warm, and they will be much more susceptible to illness and premature death. I do not recommend you use wire floors. Feeding and watering. However, if you simply cover your plywood with a weather-resistant material, your coop roof will last for ages. Other keepers have used heavy duty indoor/outdoor floor mats. A coop name sign, cute colour scheme and some hanging herb pots make Nicole's Penthouse Coop and run a lovely hen home! Painting the plywood may extend its life a little longer. Bedding is highly recommended if you’re using mats as floors. Chickens need to take dust baths to keep mites and such off of their bodies. Some are easy to build. Finally, pop down some super absorbent Hemp Bedding. You also need a material that doesn’t let moisture into the coop through condensation. Many common glues are also toxic for chickens. Chicken keepers claim it lasts pretty much forever. Purchase a suitable chicken coop for your flock. One of my chicken coops has wooden boards as a floor, and the floor is definitely harder to clean. On top of that goes bedding.To pick out the right bedding you have to understand what it does, so first I’ll explain its purpose, and then list some of the options. If you do use this material in your coop, I highly recommend covering it with a thick layer of bedding. That’s why I put this video together—to answer all those questions for you in one spot. What you decide to line your chicken coop floor with is entirely up to you, but take into account your foundational floor, weather, climate, and overall size of your coop to decide which is best. Some have suggested using a tile mortar mixer paddle and a ¾ inch drill to smooth the rubberized roof coat material until it is silky smooth. Raccoon predators can also be a real concern with plastic panel roofing. I had no rugs or furniture yet, so I had to sit and otherwise live on the concrete for the first couple of weeks. You will probably want to avoid black or a very dark color to prevent the coop from getting too hot. A concrete coop is a cold coop, but bedding will again make the difference here. Loadable chicken count is QL / 10 + rarity (maximum 13 for a 100 QL Fantastic coop). Chicken manure contains nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus, which is what all-purpose fertilizers that you find in the store have. Initially, you may feel overwhelmed. The concrete trench provides a barrier. The large rolls of linoleum or vinyl are better than the tiles. This material is much stronger and, therefore, will last longer. Asphalt is likely the least durable type of chicken coop roofing material. If you are able to remove the wire floor from your coop in this way, you can much more easily clean the droppings off. It's to help give the chickens a foundation for their legs and to provide for a safe landing for the eggs they're going to lay. Chickens much prefer dirt, sand, or peat to wood shavings, rice hulls, or other litter. When first raising backyard chickens, you need to set up a home for the flock. The rubberized roof coat material is water based, so the amount of humidity will affect the drying time. Raccoons have incredibly strong and sharp teeth, and may be able to tear through the plastic material. However, if you live in an area that is prone to rat infestation, you may want to make a “rat wall.” In fact, in some urban areas, “rat walls” are required if you pour a concrete slab. One of the simplest ways to make your life easier and cut down on cleaning time is to make a dropping board for the coop. Living on concrete in the winter is coooold. In fact, some coops will be designed with wire mesh under the roost as a bonus feature. I also put vinyl shelf liner on the coop walls behind the roosting bars. Below, you can read about each roofing material to determine which one is best for your setting. The YouTube video below shows in detail how to install sheet linoleum or vinyl: The man in this video used vinyl instead of linoleum, which is risky due to its toxicity. Your coop must have access to an outside area where your chickens can soak up sunshine and exercise if you’re not letting them out during the day to free-range. It's so easy to just wipe clean with a damp sponge or cloth. This means you shouldn’t have a problem with condensation on the roof inside your chicken coop. Strong. Building or buying your first chicken coop is a challenge, and you definitely want to get it right. Flooring materials vary widely in quality, cost, maintenance needs, and safety. As one chicken keeper said: “…it has to be stirred like it’s in a blender… After this, it’s bulletproof.”. I put this video presentation together to teach you exactly what you need to consider when buying or building your first chicken coop. I’ve made it easy for you in this training video. Many people use metal sheets for chicken coop roofing. Alternatively, if you have a coop that’s portable, you can simply move it to fresh ground and not worry about cleaning the droppings at all. If you don’t stir it well enough, it will crack, stay too soft, and peel. The recommended space that you should allow for each chicken varies depending on how much time they will spend in the coop. You'll need to decide upon the size, security, run and price. The material is a coat of rubber that will completely seal your chicken coop floor. There are so many options! The first step listed here—stirring well—is incredibly important for the roofing material to seal and settle on your chicken coop floor. What is the difference between linoleum and vinyl? The site should be dry, sheltered, and kept clean. Once a week, as the manure starts to accumulate on the floor, toss in another layer of litter. If you have small property and need to keep them confined at all times, provide a chicken run. Check out my free training video, Chicken coops 101: Designing your chickens' dream home. Practical advantages See below for more information. Plus, chickens don't need it. There comes a time when you need to remove all of the litter in the coop. Some chicken keepers have used rubber mats to protect their wood floors from moisture. I use about 10 bags of sand and all the old goes in my garden. A few feet up from the base of your pen is good enough. They tuck their head under a wing. Plywood covered in a weatherproof material, such as metal, plastic, or shingles, is the best option for chicken coop roofing as it offers protection both from predators and the elements. One chicken keeper from a cold climate said that the condensation from her metal roof got so bad that “it literally rained in the coop.”. At the very least, you will want to put hardware cloth underneath the roof to better protect your chickens. Polycarbonate sheets are higher in both quality and in price in comparison to PVC. The BEST luxury coop you’ll ever buy: Spoil your chickens with Rita Marie's, Chicken coop ventilation: 21 design ideas with pictures. For more information, check out my article, Does your chicken coop need a floor? Step 2 Pour a large amount onto the floor. The temperature may be higher due to the body heat released by your chickens in the coop. As with plastic panels, your roof will be much safer and last much longer if you install your Ondura panels on top of a plywood base. Cheap. They huddle together for warmth. of space per standard chicken in the coop. Chicken runs often end up just a forgotten bit of enclosed space. These materials will need to go on top of another flooring material, most commonly plywood. Freeloading Hens “Freeloaders” is a common nickname for chickens who simply are not laying eggs. Lasts forever. Many chicken keepers have successfully used plastic sheets and panels for chicken coop roofs. In these conditions, the material should dry within 24 hours. Below is a YouTube video that shows a concrete area being removed, and hundreds of rats are found underneath it. Make sure your flooring is covered with a thick layer of bedding at all times in order to avoid harm to your chickens. And if you’re interested in simply purchasing a high-quality prebuilt coop, I highly recommend Rita Marie’s Chicken Coops. Injuries may include sores on their feet and musculoskeletal problems in their legs. Elevate a chicken coop off the ground at least 1 foot for many reasons. You definitely don’t want your chickens living on a wire floor in cold or wet weather. Sand it is! Spring is a great time to completely close off access to your chicken run and relocate chickens during the daylight hours (free-range your chickens or place them in a tractor to till garden beds). The photos below show this wooden floor post-pressure washer cleaning. Damerow gives these instructions for building a wire floor: Step 1 Use a wooden framework for the floor, Step 2 Consider making the framework in small, removable sections, Step 4 For cleaning, remove the sections and spray them down with a pressure washer. Difficult to clean if you don’t use bedding. When you’re deciding where to put your chicken coop, here are several things to consider: Make the coop location convenient for you. To learn how to maintain a coop floor with no bedding, check out my article, What is chicken coop bedding and do you need it? More affordable vinyl and linoleum products don’t tend to hold up under multiple cleanings. In Gail Damerow’s own words, if you follow these steps, “You’ll end up with a firm floor that’s easy to maintain.” If you’ve tried this approach, please let me know how it went in the comments at the bottom of this article. This post contains affiliate links for my favorite products from Amazon and Rita Marie’s Chicken Coops. I bought this coop used from Craigslist, so I needed to thoroughly clean it before use. If you’re planning on landscaping the chicken run, then here’s the list of some chicken-friendly plants you might need to consider. Jokes and memes abound in regards to hens that won’t lay and every chicken keeper knows the dismay of traipsing to the chicken coop only to find there are no eggs. Why You Should Heat. I bring the plastic up about 2/3 of the way, since the roof overhang does a good job of shielding the top … However, if you live in an area that gets cold, the temperature and humidity levels in your coop may exceed those outside of your coop. Chicken runs often end up just a forgotten bit of enclosed space. In practice, the chicken droppings don’t actually fall through the wire. For a lesson on how to install corrugated plastic roofing, check out this article. For more information on how to figure out the correct pitch for your chicken coop roof, see my article, Chicken coop roof pitch: How to determine the right slope. One of the main reasons (if not the main reason) chicken keepers consider wire chicken coop floors is because the chicken droppings should supposedly drop through the wire onto the ground. This post contains affiliate links for my favorite products from Amazon and Rita Marie’s Chicken Coops. By following these tips you'll ensure that your chicken has the best cushy coop to rest its feathery head each day - you'll be rewarded with healthy hens and a fruitful bounty of eggs. If it’s attached securely to the coop, it should be predator-proof. If you do live in a climate that gets cold for part of the year, you can still use metal sheeting, but you will want to attach it to a plywood base or to insulation (e.g., rigid foam board) to prevent these condensation problems. More humidity means it will dry more slowly. 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