2x4 fencing for the run?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by nelsonsflock, May 20, 2011.

  1. nelsonsflock

    nelsonsflock Out Of The Brooder

    May 6, 2011
    North-Central, Idaho

    Are there any predators out there that might slip through 2"X4" wire fencing? I have a roll of 2"X4" fencing that is stronger than chicken wire but I am not sure if it will keep out predators out. I am thinking about using it but I am not sure what to do. Does anyone know if it will work?
  2. VelvettFog

    VelvettFog Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 7, 2011
    Yakima, WA
    I have heard tales of raccoons reaching through that type of wire, and well -- not pretty
  3. kesali

    kesali Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 27, 2011
    far northern Wisconsin
    Weasels and mink will get through for sure!!
  4. zookeeper15133

    zookeeper15133 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 22, 2010
    SW PA
    I was planning on using the 2x4 wire along with the plastic chicken wire. Any input on how this would work?
  5. Bengalcats1

    Bengalcats1 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 29, 2011
    I would use it but at least with the wire chicken wire instead of plastic, anything can chew thru plastic and lots of critters can fit thru 2X4
  6. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    If the chickens will be safely locked indoors by nightfall every day of the year, personally I think 2x4 fencing is perfectly reasonable and sensible, particularly if you add something smaller-mesh along the bottom 2-3' to prevent reach-through.

    There *are* a variety of critters that can go thru that size mesh (I mean, their whole bodies can go thru so they'll enter your run): but sparrows and rats are hard to keep out no matter *what*, and baby raccoons and baby possums are only a very rare and nighttime threat (at least, I've totally never seen *baby* coons out during the day, only adults); and weasels and mink are pretty exclusively nocturnal hunters.

    While hardwarecloth is still probably the best material for preventing reach-through, personally i think that chickenwire or 1/2" plastic mesh are not all that bad either for this specific purpose. Reason being, the main issue is just a) to keep chickens from sticking their heads outside the run, and b) to slow things down so that if a predator DOES try to reach in and grab a handful of napping chicken, it happens slowly and awkwardly enoguh that the chicken will have a chance to clue in and get away. So if budget restricts you to a less-secure form of smaller mesh stuff, I absolutely definitely think it IS still worth doing and you won't be THAT much worse off for it not being hardwarecloth, IMO.

    Good luck, have fun,

  7. msudawgs56

    msudawgs56 Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 26, 2011
    Grenada, Mississippi
    Im using 2 x 4 mesh with hardware cloth .... I too feel it will work fine.
  8. P-Funk

    P-Funk Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 20, 2011
    The biggest thing to get through this 2x4 wire are squirrels. They come in to eat the treats. One thing to worry about is the birds getting out. Mine could fit through up to about 3 months. They are locked inside all night. Just make sure it's buried and you should be fine.

  9. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    I use the 2" x 4" with smaller-opening chicken wire on the bottom. It is not perfect but it is extremely difficult to keep snakes, rats, weasels, small birds and squirrels out of a larger run anyway. I look at it as predator resistent, not predator proof. My coop is predator proof for nighttime.

    Another advantage of using smaller wire at the bottom is that it keeps baby chicks from getting out if you have a broody with chicks in there.

    I tried some of the plastic wire to keep the baby chicks and the chickens' heads in. It did not last that long in the sun and weather. I also had a bit of trouble with it stretching so that the adult chickens could get trapped between it and the 2x4 wire. I know part of that is that I did not attach it well enough, but I strongly recommend metal instead of plastic. I find it lasts a lot longer and required less maintenance.
  10. LilyD

    LilyD Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 24, 2011
    Bristol, VT
    I am using 2 by 4 wire but I am also not leaving my chicks outside at night. Most of the animals that hunt them will try to get them during the dark hours or right at dusk or dawn. My chicks are almost 4 weeks now but I am teaching them that at night they need to go back in to their coop so that when they are out all day it will just come naturally to them. The coop has locks on all the doors so unless they find a way to push through the hardware cloth over the vents I don't think anything will get in.

    Good luck!!

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