My husband recently recreated a chicken run/pen for our chickens and used 2"x4" wire for it. I was worried that our younger chickens might be able to get out of a hole that big. Is there a certain size wire that should be used so that they cannot squeeze through the holes? Our youngest chickens are around 5 weeks.
Proper wire mesh size
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Welcome! The safest is 1/2" hardware cloth, well secured. You can add it right over the 2x4" wire. Woven wire is safer than welded wire, but adding hardware cloth really will help. If the pen has a dig-proof base, and is totally enclosed, great. If it's only 'relatively' safe, at least lock the birds in a safe coop every night. Predators WILL come! Mary
We finished fencing our chicken run today with 5ft 2 x 4 welded wire fencing, went and fetched our 7 week old chicks and introduced them to their new playground, turned our backs for two minutes and the little devils were out! This is a 44' x 33' space and zoom they apparently needed to be on the other side of that fence.
An hour and a half later we had put a second layer of fencing this time 1 inch chicken wire all the way around the perimeter excepting the part where it is attached to the duck run ... once again turned away and they were through the chain link there.
They are all safely tucked up in the new coop tonight and tomorrow morning I will be out bright and early to put yet more chicken wire along the duck run side.
Hubby and I were just discussing them and decided that once they are full grown we will be trimming wings and maybe putting some netting over the open part of their run.
The worst offenders where the Speckled Sussex, even once returned to the run they then watched us as we put the chicken wire up, going to have to watch them carefully apparently they are escape artists !
Edited by Peekin In - 5/22/16 at 8:45pm
Also, 2" x 4" wire will not keep out many predators (rats, weasels, mink, snakes) nor wil it keep predators like raccoons from reaching in and grabbing your birds.