Our original coop was a 4'x8' chicken tractor, and while it was plenty large enough for our original 2 hens, it was a pain in the butt to constantly move about the yard. It didn't help that I brought home 2 more hens, packing it beyond it's capacity. The result was that the hens were given the freedom to roam the backyard at will. Having hens loose in the yard can be charming, but stepping in warm chicken poo at 6 am while trying to feed the dog is not. Watching your obese hens gorge themselves on two rows worth of grapes you had earmarked for some homemade wine doesn't add to the love either. The new coop will be 8'x24', with a 5'x8' night roost and two sets of nesting boxes. Having raised urban chickens on and off for most of my life, I've learned a few tricks and a few no nos along the way, and this coop should be the end all be all of townie hen houses. We also entertain a bit in our back yard so the Mr demanded it look nice so I had to snottify its appearance a bit. I'm attaching a pic of my original drawing for this so you can see where it's going. The base is made of 4"x8"x16' concrete blocks to keep the wood frame well out of the dirt. We need to tamp the blocks down to get them level but our yard is soup right now and I'm already sunburned so this is probably it for the day. The area past the coop where the IBC tote is sitting is where the greenhouse will be going up after the coop is finished. Our aquaponics system (also on the list of projects-to-finish) will go in the greenhouse. ******* Between his knees and my back we are the slowest framers ever. We are also using screws instead of nails so that adds to the time. Believe me it's hard to keep driving screws when we have an air compressor and a nail gun, but with our high winds I want this thing to be pretty stout. Took us forever to get the first section done, but at least it's the worst one so the rest should go fast. This will be the part where the door going into the coop is, as well as where the exterior accessible nestboxes will connect on. The 2x6 horizontal sticks out 2" to hang over the siding that will go beneath. The night box will begin on it. As a side note, it's Sunday, and I've already been reminded by code enforcement that I have to get a permit for this. **** Tueday and the permit has been approved. Not like I thought it wouldn't. I know everyone at city hall.... and more importantly they know what a massive pain in the butt I can be when I don't get my way. Will get another section done tonight. **** Got the left side up. This is the end that will have the door and the nestboxes that can be accessed from the outside. I also have a huge 10 hole galvanized nestbox that I'll hang in the run but I'm hoping most of them will make use of the ones that open into the roost box. The bricks are SO not level, heh. **** All walls and rafters are up now. The rafters are 2x6x12s sitting on a 2x6 on the back end which allows for slight slope. While it does snow here, the winds tend to blow it off of roofs and into drifts so I'm not really worried about a snow load. We'll run a gutter along the front side that will feed through a sand & charcoal filter down into a catchment system, that will in turn supply a gravity fed watering system for the birds.