Our friend Rob constructed our hoop coop. We gave him pictures of Out of Order Acres‘ coop and Gypsy Farmgirl’s coop posts part 1 and part 2, and he sort of improvised from there. With materials left from old projects and found in our treasure-chest of a garage at the new place, he constructed a sturdy 8′ by 8′ hoop coop, only purchasing the chicken wire and cattle panels. (Yes, hardware cloth would be much safer than the chicken wire, but it also costs a lot more. Between the study cattle panels, the thick tarp, and the coop’s proximity to the house, we are hoping to make it through the summer without incident.) I asked Rob to share a few things he did to make the coop sturdier for us.
Rob notched the side pieces of the bottom frame and set the perpendicular pieces into it to make a sturdier frame. We hope to be able to pull it with the tractor. The cattle panel is attached to the bottom frame with fence staples. He used a staple gun with an air compressor. If you have one, it definitely makes the job easier than having to hammer in the staples by hand.
To create the radiating pieces which support the arch-shape, he held up the piece of wood next to the frame piece and used a pencil to scribe the arch he wanted. He was able to use a skill saw to cut along the slightly curved line.
The roosts are two little trees from an area we are clearing for a cabin elsewhere on the property. I set-up the metal nesting boxes from my old coop, but I am mad at them because the metal hangers fell off and the raw metal sliced my fingers when I was moving the box. I’m not sure if this piece will make it to the permanent coop.
The door is an old screen door that we actually pulled off of the house. The existing mosquito netting was backed with 1/2″ hardware cloth. Rob cut down the bottom and added two bolts, top and bottom, to secure the door.
The tarps I had on hand were really too small, so the men replaced the tarp you see with a 16′ by 10′ tarp which covers all of the side and top and protects them from the rain and wind. Once the permanent coop is completed, this will be used to house bachelors / meat birds, hens with their broods, etc. We might also make a few more to use for other things around the property, like greenhouses and other temporary shelters. We’ll see. We’re really pleased with how the coop came together.