1/2" Inch Mesh...? Chicken Wire....? 1"x2" Welded Wire...?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by outlawfarmer, Apr 9, 2010.

  1. outlawfarmer

    outlawfarmer Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 27, 2010
    New Hampshire

    Been looking at hundreds of 'A frame' and "portable" coop pics for weeks and started this. I am framed up 90% and need to put fence on bottom and lower sides then wood on top side. I have heard horror stories of chicken wire breaking raccoons and possums that eat chickens. Then I see lots of pics with good ole chicken wire used. Whats the deal? Any thoughts? [​IMG]
  2. Opa

    Opa Opa-wan Chickenobi

    May 11, 2008
    Howell Michigan
    Chicken wire is great for keeping chickens in but it keeps nothing out. Weasels go thru the openings, coons and coyotes claw through it. I'd use the mesh if I were you.
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2010
  3. Zahboo

    Zahboo Simply Stated

    Feb 3, 2009
    Hope Mills, NC
    I'd use mesh. Many people that have chicken wire either haven't suffered a predator yet or their coops are in a fully fenced secure yard guared by dogs or something. There was a picture on here this week that had a huge hole busted through their chicken wire. Definitely use hardware mesh/cloth/
  4. elmo

    elmo Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 23, 2009
    There are several factors here. Chicken wire is a woven wire, meaning that the vertical and horizontal strands are simply twisted at intersection points, not welded. This is a weaker connection than a weld. Secondly, chicken wire is normally a high gauge wire, typically 20 gauge or higher. That measures how thick the wire is. The higher the gauge, the thinner the wire. 20 gauge wire isn't very strong, not strong enough to keep a dog or raccoon from ripping it apart. That's why so many people here advise that chicken wire is good for keeping chickens in, but not good for keeping predators out.

    Some people use chicken wire on their runs because their yard is fenced and they don't need to worry about dogs, and they believe the risk of a raccoon coming around during the day is low. They lock their chickens into a secure coop every single night. Others take the risk of chicken wire and are just lucky. Finally, others use chicken wire and end up cleaning after a chicken massacre.

    If you decide to use welded wire instead, there is also the issue of wire spacing to consider (that's the space formed by the vertical and horizontal wires). If the wire spacing is greater than 1/2" by 1/2" inch, a predator like a raccoon can reach through the wire, grab parts of a bird, and dismember it by pulling it through the wire. Horrible.

    I use 19 gauge, vinyl coated welded wire with 1/2" by 1/2" wire spacing (sometimes called hardware cloth) for all of my housing.
  5. omelet du fromage

    omelet du fromage Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 31, 2010
    Cape Elizabeth, Maine
    I also use the 1/2" x 1/2" hardware cloth. It's better to be safe than sorry.
  6. LittleMamaBigPapa

    LittleMamaBigPapa Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 22, 2009
    Bellevue, Nebraska
    Most def...use hardware cloth. We have coons...BIG coons and they nearly tore thru a heavy duty commercial grade garbage can...if you don't have a secure yard, use the cloth. and even a fence won't keep coons out, one scaled our 6 foot chain link. [​IMG]
  7. CityChicker

    CityChicker Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 21, 2009
    I don't use chicken wire on anything. I have a lot of cages that are made with 1/2 x 1/2 and some that the sides are 1/2 x 1 welded wire. I like both of these sizes. I also use 1 x 2 welded wire for our larger runs. I never use a larger spacing that that (for multiple reasons).
  8. fiddlebanshee

    fiddlebanshee Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 11, 2010
    Frederick, MD
    I don't want to hijack the discussion, but can someone explain to me the difference between poultry netting and chicken wire. I saw the poultry netting at HD today and it looked to me like chicken wire, but with slightly smaller openings. Or are they altogether different things?
  9. Opa

    Opa Opa-wan Chickenobi

    May 11, 2008
    Howell Michigan
    Chicken wire and poultry netting are two different names for the same product.
  10. elmo

    elmo Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 23, 2009
    Sometimes bird netting isn't even wire, but nylon or plastic:


    Some people use a product like this over the top of their run. It will keep hawks out, but that's about it.

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