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This is our first DIY hoop house style chicken coop built in the Summer of 2010. It is 8ft x 10ft x 7ft high, which provides plenty of room for up to 12 laying hens plus space for feeder, water dispenser and feed storage can. The locally purchased 4 mil tarp lasted about 2.5 years whereas we replaced it with a canvas tarp. We’ve since been using an industrial 14mil vinyl coated tarp on customer coops, which are not available locally, but well worth the wait for shipping.
I’ve kept chickens for over 10 years and with this coop for over 3 years here in Texas. This design is by far the best keeping our hens healthy and safe. It offers maximum ventilation to guard chickens from heat and air borne diseases, two things they easily die from. Temporary plastic can be added to the dominate wind side in sub-freezing weather along with more hay or straw for warmth. It also has 3 layers of predator protection; chicken wire (AKA poultry mesh), welded wire fencing on top of the chicken wire and a perimeter buried apron. We have never had a predator get in during its 3 year history. The 2 layer wire combination is less costly than hardware cloth and has proven itself over time on not just ours, but several customer coops as well.
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See our latest design, “The Hoop Coop Chicken Fortress” here; http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d3wbW8wUVHI
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