Coop de Ville

Today was an exciting, tiring day.  The coop arrived from ebay last night at 6:00 pm, which was great, but dashed all hopes of putting together the coop that day.  This morning bright and early my husband, daughter and I assembled the coop and run.  Let’s just say the instructions left a lot to be desired and the youtube video link provided wasn’t for the same style coop.  It took longer than we had expected, but these things usually do!

Later in the day my ever-supportive parents came over to help with final touches and coop installation.  It’s a family affair!  We’re all excited about our new brood.  During my coop safety research, countless forums and blogs touched on the importance of adding a hardware cloth floor to the bottom of the coop.  This helps protect the chickens if a predator that likes to dig (ie: coyotes and raccoons) is able to dig under the coop and access the birds.

After coop/run assembly, the first order of business is to attach 19 gauge 1/2 inch hardware cloth to the underside of the coop (the floor).

We purposefully left extra netting on all sides of the floor.  This adds an extra barrier of digging protection to deter the persistent predator.  So many times chicken owners have stated that they thought their coop was “safe enough” only to end up losing some or all of their chickens.  It’s amazing what hungry wild animals can do.  Better safe than sorry!

We used a staple gun to secure the hardware cloth. Thanks, Dad!

Before adding the roof, the coop was set in it's final home. The roof weighs a ton, which I liked since it's makes the coop all the more sturdy.

Next we added some recycled bricks on top of the hardware cloth 2 high and 3 deep to minimize access to the underside of the coop.  Next we swept in dirt between the bricks.  Plus it turned out so pretty!  We added dirt to the floor of the coop so the silkies would still have dirt to walk on and scratch in (way more than what’s pictured here!)

The main door was a different situation with the brick.  Because the door needed to be able to swing open and for extra security, we buried some bricks under the doorway under the hardware cloth and covered it with dirt.

Here's the finish silkie coop! I couldn't be happier with how it turned out. I feel comfortable with it's security, size and layout. I think the silkies will be happy here. There's a slide out tray under the coop door that makes cleaning very easy. The only things left the do are drill a few ventilation holes in the back of the coop and attach some lock mechanisms to the nesting box ceiling.

My daughter's best chicken pose!

Our sweet silkies arrive tomorrow!  I think we’re ready…it’ll be a great experience!  From an unused space home to a hedge to an open area big enough to raise chickens and provide my family with fresh eggs… it feels good!  I found the biggest hornworm on my tomato today and wished I could have saved it for a silkie.  Oh well, there’s always tomorrow.

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