And the answer is YES! Except for the hardware cloth- we decided the chicks' safety was most important and couldn't scrimp on that. First, we reused a pile of bricks that were dumped in our backyard. We thought these bricks would be the ideal base for the coop. Raccoons and other animals will not be able to dig up under the floor to get inside. We (the collective "we"- I just watched) chipped the old mortar off the bricks, laid them down for the floor, and put concrete in between:
Next, we added the walls above the brick. It leaned a little bit at this point (we didn't exactly know how to build walls...) but we decided the windows and siding would give some stability to the coop. A contractor friend brought some lumber by that he was going to throw away because it was warped. Chicks don't care about warped wood so we were grateful! The windows were found in a dumpster at my old studio. The door was actually on the back door to our house- I think it looks much better on the coop.
We had leftover paint from my studio- our choices were either periwinkle blue or lime green. The lime green was rather jarring in the garden so we decided to pretend that the coop was Monet-influenced:
|To the left are the nesting boxes. To the right, you can see the roosting bars, door to what will be the run, & the shelf above the window where chickens sleep|
We added the run this past weekend and the chicks are happy and safe. The chicks love that they can escape into the run and we cannot follow easily. Actually they seem to like my husband and me- but escaping from our lovely, enthusiastic children makes them happy... Here is the completed coop/run: