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  1. #1
    Hashette's Avatar
    Hashette is offline Rooter
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    Default Can anyone recommend where to buy housing?

    We're about to sign up on the waiting list for some ex-bats, which will be our very first venture into keeping hens, so we're reading anything and everything we can get our hands on.

    So far the plan is to dig out about half a ton of earth at the bottom of the garden, and create a large 6ft by 6 ft fox-proof run, tall enough for me to stand up in, and inside that put a coop on legs so that we don't get rats underneath it (the garden backs on to fields) and so that they can make a dust bath under it. Hubby's an ex-builder, so no problems building the fox-proof run - or so we think.......

    We need to buy a coop to sit inside it. Any recommendations on what to buy and where from very gratefully received. We're a bit skint, so have looked at e-bay, but they all seem to be collosal things and cost hundreds of pounds, unless we go for something that sounds far too small even if it's only night-time housing (two foot square!). When you don't really know what you need, it's a bit of a minefield.

    Any advice very gratefully received

  2. #2
    alanm's Avatar
    alanm is offline Germinator
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    Hi, check you local Freecycle site get a 2nd hand 6ft x 4ft shed in reasonable condition and adapt it, dont forget to use a bird friendly wood preserver on bare timber....alan

  3. #3
    vicky's Avatar
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    I'd go with the shed idea - esp if hubby is a builder! You get far more chicken and human headroom for far less money and the conversion is SO simple...add pop hole, roost, nest boxes and locks on the door.
    If you want a photo of our wendy/chicken house let me know!

  4. #4
    di's Avatar
    di
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    Third that idea!!Our coop is a converted shed(well actually1&1/2!)I've looked on Ebay & a few chook sites & even secondhand the proper coops are quite pricey!You can often pick up an old shed in the freead section of the local paper.
    the fates lead him who will;him who won't they drag.

    Happiness is not having what you want,but wanting what you have.xx

  5. #5
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    Snadger is offline Dundiggin
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    Mine is a shed with a pop hole cut in it! Depending on how many chooks you want dictates the size of the shed! Mines about 6 foot square and I have 10 chooks......it could probably take a few more if need be!
    My Majesty made for him a garden anew in order
    to present to him vegetables and all beautiful flowers.- Offerings of Thutmose III to Amon-Ra (1500 BCE)

    Diversify & prosper



  6. #6
    Hashette's Avatar
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    Thanks everyone. Funnily enough we'd been offered an old shed (if we dismantle it and take it away, so a bit of a mission) but I'd turned it down because I thought that the hen house needed to be off the ground to stop rats nesting underneath it? It's not too late to change our minds on it though.

    Yes please to the photos, Vicky, especially of the inside. Also how do you ventillate it? I thought maybe take the window out and replace it with chicken wire?

    Thank you all for your advice, it's very much appreciated

  7. #7
    vicky's Avatar
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    I've pm'ed you some photos, Hashette.
    Ventilation is exactly as you say, chicken wire over the window, seems to work fine as the space is large it's nice and airy in there.
    It's also on a concrete base to stop any rats coming through that way.
    There is also an overhang of the (onduline) roof which is really handy as it stops the area immediatly outside the house getting too muddy.

  8. #8
    Hashette's Avatar
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    Thanks a million Vicky, got the photos and it's really given us an idea of what to aim for inside.

    Right - today's the day we start. Half a ton of earth to shift at the bottom of the garden, then we can start laying the base. The bloke who owned the house before us spent 36 years chucking his grass clippings and other rubbish in that corner. We had a bit on an excavate when we first moved in, and found a load of asbestos and some gas cannisters that according to hubby could have gone boom at any time when they froze in winter, so if I don't come back on here again, you'll know my spade hit something it shouldn't!

    I'm not actually sure where we're going to put all the earth we dig out of there - some helpful twit at work suggested digging a hole and burying the soil in that.....

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