This post has been too long coming. If you remember I got some free quail this several months ago. They had been in a brooder in our barn for several weeks and had started getting stinky and dusty, so an outdoor hutch needed to be built.
My original plan was to half lap the framing members for a clean look. This lasted about four boards. I decided to keep things moving faster and abandoned the half lapping. It ended up working out ok though, because it gave me a perfect spot to staple the hardware mesh. This will hopefully become clear later through pictures.
Marked for cutting
Cut with the circular saw
Cleaned up and ready for joining
One of the half laps
The basic frame
You might be able to tell from the picture above I half lapped the top cross member in front and back. The bottom cross member was only, I will call it quarter lapped. As I said this gave me a lip to staple the mesh onto.
I then cut some support beanm to go in the middle of the coop to support the wire mesh. I cut them at an angle so it might help the eggs to roll to the front to make egg collection easier.
I then stapled down the wire mesh.
I rounded it at the front to help avoid egg breakage
I then started cutting the sides. I had some exterior grade siding left over from my pallet built sheep shed so that is what I used.
My makeshift saw table
Because of the quarter lapping there was a gap between the siding and framing in the back.
To fix this I screwed a piece of scrap wood there to fill the gap.
I then installed a piece of mesh across the front of the coop.
Three sides, a bottom, and a front later this is what I had.
Next I cut out two openings in the front. I used some scrap pieces I had to fashion doors out of. I used J clips and J clip pliers as the hings on top of the doors. The doors push in so that if I forget to latch them they fall into a closed position. Unfortunately I didn’t have a good way to latch the doors. I resorted to using carabiners and some clips for tractor attachments.
After some internet sleuthing I found some proper cage door latches on a website called rabbitnipple.com. They work fantastic.
I plan to put a steel roof on the coop, but for now I am using a sheet of the exterior siding. Here are some pictures of the coop in the final location with the birds in it.
I put some straw in the coop thinking that it would give them something to bed down in, but I am not sure they needed it. Really, it is just keeping their poop from dropping through the wire. As we get more and more light every day, I am hoping that I will start getting some eggs.
All in all I think it turned out pretty well. I never plan to have a ton of quail, plans can change I suppose, but for now this gives me plenty of space for the birds.
Posted on Simple Life Mom