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  #1  
Old 07-28-2021, 08:33 AM
thump55 thump55 is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: WI
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Default You got chickens?

Anyone using an automatic coop door? Wife wants one for our coop and I see nothing but headaches in my future.

We have chickens year round and these look like a disaster in the cold and snow.

Anyone have one that actually works?
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  #2  
Old 07-28-2021, 08:38 AM
Custom Eyes Custom Eyes is online now
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Don't have one, but sounds like a bad idea. When it gets cold, some of my chickens that leave the fenced area and free range the property, can't fly back in at night when it cools down. I have to open the gate to let them in. An auto door would leave them out and prey for predators.
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  #3  
Old 07-28-2021, 08:42 AM
thump55 thump55 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Custom Eyes View Post
Don't have one, but sounds like a bad idea. When it gets cold, some of my chickens that leave the fenced area and free range the property, can't fly back in at night when it cools down. I have to open the gate to let them in. An auto door would leave them out and prey for predators.
Ours free range all the time, but they are good about getting back to the coop at dark. You can program the times in on most (or they have a light sensor).
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  #4  
Old 07-28-2021, 08:49 AM
Custom Eyes Custom Eyes is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thump55 View Post
Ours free range all the time, but they are good about getting back to the coop at dark. You can program the times in on most (or they have a light sensor).
If all yours can get back to the coop, doesn't sound like a bad idea. For some reason, a couple of mine just can't fly back in when it's gets cold.
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  #5  
Old 07-28-2021, 09:39 AM
Steven Pederson Steven Pederson is offline
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we have one.

Our set up is we have a coop covered by a larger 12x24' run that is fully roofed and extremely secure. I then made a 100x100 pasture for the ladies to roam during the day. We're on flock number 6 i think in the last 5 years due to predators. We only let the ladies out in the pasture when we're home. So they spend alot of time in the run.

At first a rain storm or dark clouds would trigger the door to shut leaving alot of the girls out in the run. I have since changed it to close and open at set times. In the meantime they have decided they no longer want to roost at night in the coop but on top of it... so right now it's a total waste. haha.

Hoping in the winter they start roosting next to the heat lamp in the coop.
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  #6  
Old 07-28-2021, 10:00 AM
thump55 thump55 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steven Pederson View Post
we have one.

Our set up is we have a coop covered by a larger 12x24' run that is fully roofed and extremely secure. I then made a 100x100 pasture for the ladies to roam during the day. We're on flock number 6 i think in the last 5 years due to predators. We only let the ladies out in the pasture when we're home. So they spend alot of time in the run.

At first a rain storm or dark clouds would trigger the door to shut leaving alot of the girls out in the run. I have since changed it to close and open at set times. In the meantime they have decided they no longer want to roost at night in the coop but on top of it... so right now it's a total waste. haha.

Hoping in the winter they start roosting next to the heat lamp in the coop.
What brand door do you have? Does it work OK?
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  #7  
Old 07-28-2021, 11:46 AM
Steven Pederson Steven Pederson is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thump55 View Post
What brand door do you have? Does it work OK?
https://www.omlet.us/shop/chicken_ke...p_door_opener/

i've had it about a year. Works great in the winter/fall/spring before the leaves come out. Coop is in a very covered area from leaves, so the light sensor things it's darker than it is hence we've changed it to a timer.

Battery life still shows 95+%. It's never failed, i check to make sure it's closed every evening. Worked great down to -35 last winter in the north land.

Really expensive, but worth it especially if your hens roost in the correct location.
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  #8  
Old 07-28-2021, 04:51 PM
hnd hnd is offline
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We have anywhere from a dozen to 2 dozen chickens at any one time. we free range and run roosters so we kind of have this natural selection thing going on where sometimes we are down a bit because something got them when they were too close to the tall grass or sometimes, out trots mama with a handful of chicks she's been sitting on under a shed somewhere.



i was tiring of opening and closing each day and night so i purchased a auto door mechanism. it ddidn't come with a door but i made one and it lifted it up with a string and worked well. this lasted for about 3 years before the raccoons figured out they could just lift the door and this winter was being as rough as it is, our flock was wacked down to 8.

we also run game hens and game roosters so they are super aggressve and basically will attack any animal that gets too close to its space.

so instead of jsut staying in the roof rafters where they were likely fine, they'd hop down to fight.

anyhoo, i bought this door :



https://www.chewy.com/chickenguard-l...BoCVBsQAvD_BwE


i just bought the door not the mechanism as mine is still functioning. amazon for like 50 bucks. it will actually lock so that nothing can get them. running it 6 mo with no issue.
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  #9  
Old 07-29-2021, 05:20 AM
Tappin' Bottom Tappin' Bottom is offline
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Location: Central South Dakota
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we bought a "ladies first" chicken door and couldn't be happier with it. Solar powered so it'll keep letting them out decades after covid kills us all. has a switch you can manually open or close or set it to auto. it opens at first light and closes about dark, they are all on the roost a good 30-45 minutes before it closes. it's a screw operation so varmints can't come swing it open or lift it. when it closes it stops just before the bottom, raises then lowers incase one is sittong on the threshold or late getting back in (never has happened). It has an indicater light so you know it's operational from a ways away. The setting/override switch is connected via telephone cord with the square ends so if you can get one long enough you could put it in the house and change settings from there. when bad weather is coming, we flip it to stay closed. worth every single penny hands down. thinking about doing another run on the other side of the coop and getting another door so we can rotate runs. I highly recommend the ladies first chicken door. I originally had looked at doing it myself to try and save money, wouldn't pencil out and wouldn't have been nearly as well made. all the naysayers don't know what they don't know.
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Last edited by Tappin' Bottom; 07-29-2021 at 05:23 AM.
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  #10  
Old 07-29-2021, 10:49 PM
Ohio fisherman Ohio fisherman is offline
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Location: Ohio, USA.
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Default In the coop

We have had chickens for 30 years that live in a coop with a run. At night they go inside and I slide down the guillotine style door. In the morning I open the door. If we will be away or want them to stay inside they have room and clean floors and bedding. Inside are windows and a door to let in light and fresh air. There is also a temperature thermostat controlled power air exchanger system that draws out warm air so cooler air can replace it. Around the entire system are a few electric fence wires mounted on insulators screwed into the walls at the base and open eve. The wires protect the entire compound. In more than 30 years of chickens and turkeys we have not lost 1 bird to a predator.
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