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Unsure of what I should use as a top for the Duck's outdoor Kennel.

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

Hi All! 

I just got done putting together the ducks Kennel that will house them during the night. I am unsure of what to use as a top for the kennel in order for it to be totally predator proof. If anyone has any suggestions or has been in a similar situation, please let me know! I will try and attach some pictures of the kennel. It is 8 feet x 4 feet and 6 feet in height. Also, what would be a good flooring to use as opposed to the concrete for the ducks to walk on? Thanks a bunch :) 

 

 

post #2 of 7

Oh, that ones easy.  I'd just buy a 48" roll of 2x4 welded wire and cut to size - wire or ziptie in place.  The 48" width will cover your roof/ceiling in two runs. What kind of predator critters are in your area?  I can't tell how widely spaced the bars on you run are, but if you have raccoons in the area (most places do), then I'd add a layer of chicken wire (the 1" kind) snugly around the lower half of the run, to prevent reach-ins.  My neighbor had a raccoon pull a duck's head through their wider spaced mesh - and they ended up with a dead adult and two ducklings (the babies pulled all the way through)....

Caretaker of a lovely mixed flock including: australorp, plymouth rocks, wyandotte, d'uccles, silkies, EEs, andalusian, and a few seramas, plus a golden retriever, great dane, and three cats.  I always swore that I wouldn't succumb to chicken math.  I lied.
 

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Caretaker of a lovely mixed flock including: australorp, plymouth rocks, wyandotte, d'uccles, silkies, EEs, andalusian, and a few seramas, plus a golden retriever, great dane, and three cats.  I always swore that I wouldn't succumb to chicken math.  I lied.
 

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post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 

Holy cow that sounds horrific :'( I will absolutely make sure to cover the bottom half with the chicken wire. Thanks for the information! I will get to work on that today---do you have any advice also for what I should use to cover the concrete? I have heard if the concrete gets slippery then ducks can hurt their legs if they slide on it the wrong way. 

post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 

Also, what kind of covering do you think would be best? A tarp? I am not sure. Thank you SO much for you advice and help, it is greatly appreciated :-) 

post #5 of 7

I would like to suggest that around the bottom 2 or 3 feet instead of chicken wire, go with half inch metal hardware cloth - much less bendable.  teach1rusl makes a good point.  I also know someone who lost a duck due to a one inch gap under the pen gate.

 

So, really, even a one inch gap where raccoons can reach through is a security problem.

 

They have all night, all day to get in....

 

My pen sits on the ground.  The underside of it is coated chain link, attached at the edges of the pen.  I have a mix of duck manure and chopped straw and leaves as the bedding, and the pen is on a 2% slope so it drains.

 

That is really important - drainage - some pens are too level, or have low spots, and that holds water and increases risk of disease.

 

Some folks use stall mats over concrete.  Those you can rinse.  I feel that ducks really appreciate something a little more natural that will absorb their manure.  Because if they are on stall mats, they are walking through their poop until the next rinse-off.

 

But definitely cover the concrete, because bumblefoot occurs more often when they are on that kind of surface.

 

I have woven wire fence across the top of the day pen, and in winter I have covered the top with heavy row cover fabric (I can get it in 12 by 20 ft size).

When I have done that, I have made myself another chore, because when one gets 18 inches of snow over night, first job in the morning is getting that off the top of the pen before more snow falls, and before the ducks go in there.  Snow load is something to consider.

 

But if you're in Florida, maybe not so much!

Please PM me, or use @Amiga in the message if you would like to hear from me soon.  

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Please PM me, or use @Amiga in the message if you would like to hear from me soon.  

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post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 

Thank you SO much for taking the time to advise me :) I will go ahead with the metal hardware cloth. I also think that the stall mats are a good idea as well--how would you suggest I "raise" the flooring so there is drainage? I am a little confused about how to go about it. And should I cover the stall mats with anything? I plan on having a dog house at the end of the kennel with a mix of DE and shavings. I was hoping to keep the rest of the pen more easier to simply hose off once or twice a day. Thank you :) 

post #7 of 7

I wonder if you might be able to use bricks to make a "high end" on the concrete, then get some gravel to taper it down, making a slope, then put the stall mats on top of that.  I haven't had to try that, but it's the first idea that came to me.  Something on the concrete, under the mats, to make a very slight slope.

 

 

For all I know, the stall mat makers have a product that does that.

Please PM me, or use @Amiga in the message if you would like to hear from me soon.  

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Please PM me, or use @Amiga in the message if you would like to hear from me soon.  

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