Cool Chicken House

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December 23, 2010

Who doesn't love a chicken run? This cool coop is by David Rosen, an Associate Producer at CBS News in New York. His goal, in addition to sheltering four egg-laying hens, was to design a structure that complemented his house, a modern barn in Rockland County. 

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  The main house uses new and salvaged lumberyard materials, including an inexpensive sliding window from Lowe’s. There's a planting box under the window. The sleeping area is completely insulated with rigid foam sheathing. For cold nights there is a heat lamp.
    The main house uses new and salvaged lumberyard materials, including an inexpensive sliding window from Lowe’s. There's a planting box under the window. The sleeping area is completely insulated with rigid foam sheathing. For cold nights there is a heat lamp.
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  The structure of the coop was inspired by the new bus shelters and newsstands in New York City.
    The structure of the coop was inspired by the new bus shelters and newsstands in New York City.
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  Here's some background, in Rosen's own words: "Our adventure with chickens began a year ago when an abandoned rooster wandered onto our property. 'Big Red' became the mayor (and terror) of our street. When he wasn’t asserting his dominance over whoever crossed his path, he was friendly and curious, and kept me company while I was building his home. We left a warning sign and a pile of sticks for unsuspecting joggers."
    Here's some background, in Rosen's own words: "Our adventure with chickens began a year ago when an abandoned rooster wandered onto our property. 'Big Red' became the mayor (and terror) of our street. When he wasn’t asserting his dominance over whoever crossed his path, he was friendly and curious, and kept me company while I was building his home. We left a warning sign and a pile of sticks for unsuspecting joggers."
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  "Unfortunately he met his demise when he tried to assert his dominance over the neighbor's dogs.  Ironically, this tragedy occurred a week before he was to meet his new roommates: four spring hens we adopted from my son’s kindergarten classroom."
    "Unfortunately he met his demise when he tried to assert his dominance over the neighbor's dogs. Ironically, this tragedy occurred a week before he was to meet his new roommates: four spring hens we adopted from my son’s kindergarten classroom."
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  There’s ample head room in the coop for people to visit and take care of the hen’s needs.
    There’s ample head room in the coop for people to visit and take care of the hen’s needs.
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  Attached to the east and west sides of the house are two runs, each extending 50’ in either direction. The design of these was inspired by  the sculptures of Ernesto Neto.
    Attached to the east and west sides of the house are two runs, each extending 50’ in either direction. The design of these was inspired by the sculptures of Ernesto Neto.
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  They are constructed with half-inch grid wire cloth (48” wide) stitched with wire onto a series of hand-curved ten-foot long rebar hoops. The ends of the hoops are bent at the ends and anchored to the ground with 1’ long stakes also handmade from rebar.
    They are constructed with half-inch grid wire cloth (48” wide) stitched with wire onto a series of hand-curved ten-foot long rebar hoops. The ends of the hoops are bent at the ends and anchored to the ground with 1’ long stakes also handmade from rebar.
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  The wire cloth which rests along the ground is hidden under a layer of dirt and grass. The shape of the hoops adjusts well to the uneven hillside.
    The wire cloth which rests along the ground is hidden under a layer of dirt and grass. The shape of the hoops adjusts well to the uneven hillside.
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  The runs give the hens plenty of room to zoom and peck.
    The runs give the hens plenty of room to zoom and peck.
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  Another view of the finished coop.
    Another view of the finished coop.
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  "The hens eat organic layer pellets and household leftovers. They go crazy for grapes. We are averaging three to four eggs a day."
    "The hens eat organic layer pellets and household leftovers. They go crazy for grapes. We are averaging three to four eggs a day."

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