New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Electrified Hoop House???

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

We would like to build a hoop-house style movable chicken coop.  Our question is about predator proofing.

We are aware that some people put an electric fence around their hoop house, but this would not be practical in snowy winters.  We are also aware of people who cover the entire hoop house with hardware cloth, which we could do, although it is pricey.

 

This is our idea: the hoop house will have metal hoops, which sit on PVC pipe, so the metal is not touching the ground.  If we covered the bottom 2 feet of the hoop house with hardware cloth, and then covered the whole thing with plastic, could we electrify the hardware cloth (and all adjoining metal parts) with a charger?

 

We could also put hardware cloth on the surrounding ground, but not touching anything electrified.

Is this a reasonable idea?  Anyone see a problem with this (other than a power outage)?

 

I appreciate any advice!

 

post #2 of 13

Those ideas sound like they have some promise.  I have not built a hoop coop, but I like the concept.  What kind of plastic were you thinking of using on top?  You could also consider using welded wire above the hardware cloth.

CHICKENS:to name just a few cochin, orpington,  OEG  also have: mute swans, geese, and cats
  SEE MY BYC PAGE  for photos 

  SEE MY  CHICKEN PAGE for even more photos

Reply

CHICKENS:to name just a few cochin, orpington,  OEG  also have: mute swans, geese, and cats
  SEE MY BYC PAGE  for photos 

  SEE MY  CHICKEN PAGE for even more photos

Reply
post #3 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by scratch'n'peck View Post

Those ideas sound like they have some promise.  I have not built a hoop coop, but I like the concept.  What kind of plastic were you thinking of using on top?  You could also consider using welded wire above the hardware cloth.


Thanks for the reply.  We were going to use regular greenhouse plastic (polyethylene) on half, and something else (to provide shade) on the other half.  The idea was to keep them in the garden for the winter, where they will fertilize the ground and get warmth from the sun, and then move the coop off for the summer.  I'm not sure what the other covering should be, as we don't want it to heat up too much in the summer, but some kind of silver tarp or something.

 

I like the idea of perhaps using welded wire or maybe even chicken wire over the top, especially because the snow builds up on the sides, so it is hard to know how high the electrified hardware cloth should go.

 

Our plan is still evolving, but I like the idea if we can make it work!

 

 

post #4 of 13

The problem i see is electrifying it.   HW Cloth has so much metal you would need to be really pushing the current to electrify it.   you could ri an easy to move hot wire strand or two and put it around the coop......or electric poultry netting that you disconnect the snow covered strands?

 

 

I just doubt HW Cloth will electrify correctly and safely

post #5 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by organick View Post

The problem i see is electrifying it.   HW Cloth has so much metal you would need to be really pushing the current to electrify it.   you could ri an easy to move hot wire strand or two and put it around the coop......or electric poultry netting that you disconnect the snow covered strands?

 

 

I just doubt HW Cloth will electrify correctly and safely

This is an interesting point that I don't know the answer to.  I don't think the poultry netting is an option,- we get a lot of snow in a normal winter.  I do know that the charger is rated for many miles of fence.  Perhaps so many miles that even if you added up all the miles from each strand of hardware cloth, that it would be within limits.

 

I wonder if using welded wire on the top and hardware cloth on the bottom (no electrifying involved) would be enough protection, or if critters (like a weasel) would just climb the hardware cloth and come in through the welded wire?

 

I appreciate everyone's ideas while we try to come up with a plan.
 

 

 

post #6 of 13

A) you'd need a very big charger to charge hardware cloth

B) I don't think hardware cloth even would conduct very well and it would be very easy to short out

C) how were you planning exactly to keep your birds away from the cloth? wouldn't they get repeatedly shocked by it?

 

I'd go for electrified wire strands 6" and 12" above the ground on insulators attached to your pen. I'm currently building a couple hoop houses and that is my plan.

 

Good luck with your project!

-Cielo
Pheasants, Chickens, Rabbits

Reply

-Cielo
Pheasants, Chickens, Rabbits

Reply
post #7 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by cielo View Post

A) you'd need a very big charger to charge hardware cloth

B) I don't think hardware cloth even would conduct very well and it would be very easy to short out

C) how were you planning exactly to keep your birds away from the cloth? wouldn't they get repeatedly shocked by it?

 

I'd go for electrified wire strands 6" and 12" above the ground on insulators attached to your pen. I'm currently building a couple hoop houses and that is my plan.

 

Good luck with your project!


Thanks for the reply. We've dropped that crazy scheme now.
Now we are thinking of covering one half (north) with something permanent, like corrugated siding, and the other half with hardware cloth covered in clear plastic (with added ventilation).
In the winter, the clear plastic will face south, while the chickens work in the garden. In the summer, we'll turn it north to provide shade, and move it out into the yard.
We'll do hardware cloth along the ground for the predators. I hope that idea sounds more reasonable, but I appreciate feedback if it sounds crazy! big_smile.png
post #8 of 13

Good post, I've been working in this idea for a few months myself. I plan on using some 16' wide hoops I've had for a few years to create a tractor for year around use for layers.

 

Plans are to enclose "coop" at one end (roosts, nest boxes, feed, and water). I'm still debating the roof. Since I will need electricity to heat water I'm thinking I might as well use double layer of plastic and inflate the roof over the whole thing (for strength in wind/ice/snow more than insulation).  I would use 2"X4" purlins to add plastic support and rigidity, I do get wet/heavy snow occasionally here and I also think this strength might be prudent when moving the structure.

 

This plastic would run down to a hip board at 4' off the ground, then apply hardware cloth (inside)  to cover that space. In winter I will add a 4'X length plastic over the hardware cloth and attach at the base. The end opposite the coop will have 2"X4" studs covered with hardware cloth, then single layer plastic, the plastic removed in summer. On the ends a drop down hinged section at the top for ventilation needed in winter on sunny days. Shade cloth in summer or move to shaded area.

 

I'm still deciding the total length as well as the "skids", possibly schedule 80 poly or used irrigation pipe are 2 options. I do know the snow needs to be kept clear of the sidewalls after every storm, and clearing the snow in front of the unit will be required b4 any move.  I do have experience with one high tunnel here so some lessons have already been learned.

 

While all this seems like a lot of work I feel that the benefit of adding addition OM and poop to these areas for a garden/future garden might well be worth the effort. The "sunny" area will get clean straw spread lightly every few days, the birds love it and that combines with the poop to get tilled in when weather allows in spring. I also will hang rabbit cages down the center in winter, add heat, more pecking for the hens, and more manure.

 

I hope some others with experience will chime in here.

 

Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.

Reply

Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.

Reply
post #9 of 13
Thread Starter 

I like your idea for the 4 feet of removable plastic at the base for extra ventilation in the summer, unkadan.  We have 2 hoop houses in our garden now, that are for gardening, as opposed to chicken-keeping.  The whole hoop-house coop idea evolved after we quarantined some purchased pullets in the hoop house this winter (with no predator protection, but it worked out).  It was so much warmer than our current coop, and the chickens seemed much more active out in the warmer, brighter hoop house, that it got us thinking about a more permanent option.

 

Our hoop houses are 20'x24', constructed with chain-link fence top rail.  The purlins are the same material, attached to every hoop.  The skids are schedule 80 PVC conduit, 3".  We used 45 degree sweeps as ski tips.  While there are ventilation windows up high, and double doors on both ends, it was so hot in there this summer that we had to roll back much of the end plastic (which is single layer).

 

I did shovel along the edges and brush snow off with a broom this winter, but we had very little snow here this year.  We did learn that we should probably stake them down for the winter.  We figured they would freeze to the ground, but it was such a weird winter and we had one hoop house move quite a distance during a warm, windy storm.  Luckily, the hoop house with the chickens in it did not travel!

 

I like the idea of a moveable coop that will benefit the garden, so I'm hoping whatever we design will work out.  I'm going to attempt to post a not-very-informative photo of the hoop houses, but I'm not sure I can pull it off using an IPad.

 

The photo isn't working.  You can see it by going to my profile page and looking at the album labeled "default, 5 photos".  It is photo number 5, along with some entertaining winter laundry photos should you be interested.

 

I would love to hear more about your hoop coop project as it evolves!

post #10 of 13
I have built 2 hoop houses and love them, but mine are not movable. I used 1x2 welded wire on mine. The first one I made had pressure treated 2x4's as runners on the ground. I drilled holes into the boards and stuck the PVC pipe into the holes. I made the hoops just tall enough for me to walk under. I extended the wire out on each side about 18 inches and staked it down with tent stakes. I put a tarp over the top for rain protection and also covered the sides with clear plastic sheeting in the winter to block the wind and provide light. You can still use the hardware cloth around the bottom to prevent coons or possums from reaching through the wire. I lime knowing that they are safe from all predators including hawks and owls. A bear could get in, but not anything else. Just keep reading and looking at other peoples coops and runs to see what works for other people.
Mom to 3 sons, 2 horses, 1 Chesapeake, 2 BO's, 1 SLW, and 7 refrigerator chicks (eggs hatched after being refrigerated), they are 5 SLW's and 2 BO/SLW crosses.
Reply
Mom to 3 sons, 2 horses, 1 Chesapeake, 2 BO's, 1 SLW, and 7 refrigerator chicks (eggs hatched after being refrigerated), they are 5 SLW's and 2 BO/SLW crosses.
Reply
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav: