2x4 welded fence?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by TeamChaos, Apr 12, 2010.

  1. TeamChaos

    TeamChaos Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 8, 2009
    So, I'm still hashing through my fence plans and I'm stumped- I've found welded wire available 60 inches high, but the gaps in it as 2 by 4... isn't that going to let a lot of predators in?
  2. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    Yes well sort of but.

    It depends on the larger context.

    a) you would want to put something smaller-meshed along the bottom 2-3' to prevent reach-through incidents. 1/2" hardwarecloth is ideal, but honestly it is not *that* much riskier to use 1/2" mini-chickenwire or even (if you really insist) 1/2" plastic garden mesh, as the 2x4 wire keeps animals *bodies* from entering the run, you just want to keep paws and chickenheads from going through unexpectedly, you know?

    and then also

    b)If you are not going to have a top/roof on the run -- if the top will be open to the sky -- then there really isn't anything that can go through 2x4" holes that can't ALSO climb up OVER any smaller-meshed fence and get in that way. With the possible -- just *possible* -- exception of some of yer lazier grade of snakes, which are not a problem most places anyhow.

    Whereas, if you ARE going to have a secure solid or small-holed top/roof on the run, the 2x4 *does* offer less security, because baby raccoons and yer smaller caliber opossums will be able to go through it, whereas if you used 1x1 wire they would not. (Weasels and rats can go through 1x1 wire, but honestly they are pretty darn hard to keep out entirely since all they need is *one* teensy gap *somewhere*...)

    Also, in terms of fence height, have you asked at your local feedstore what they can order for you. If you *want* taller 1x2 or 1x1 fencewire, they may very well be able to get you some. Although it will be more expensive, and if your run will be topless I am not certain how pointful it'd be, personally.

    Good luck, have fun,

  3. TeamChaos

    TeamChaos Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 8, 2009
    Just in case anyone is searching for answers, I'm posting a wrap up of what I ended up doing. Thanks again to patandchickens for helping me get a better understanding of how all my fencing elements needed to work together.

    I went with the 60 inch high fencing I mentioned above, dug it in and trimmed it with chicken wire that extends out from the bottom of the fence to prevent predators from digging in and from chicken heads poking out (the chicks would stick their heads out when they saw a dog or cat approach the fence- I nearly had a heart attack) I suspended deer and bird netting over the run so that nothing could get in by climbing the fence ( They'd just end up sitting on the mesh top, I left some slack in it so it's not easy to tear). I put thresholds under my gates so that nothing can shimmy in that way either. We've had some hawks check the birds out and one raccoon tried to shack up in our barn next door to my coop, but no one has breeched the perimeter, neither land nor sky- thank God. Now, the flood damage to one side of the fence was intense- our creek breeched it's banks and brought a ton of rocks and sticks against the fence, where it made a dam and the weight of the water bent the fence badly enough that any critter could have walked in or any chicken could have popped right out- thank goodness the flood was at nite and I checked the damage before I let anyone out. I never considered flood readiness in my fence planning.
  4. elmo

    elmo Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 23, 2009
    Sounds good!

    In defense of chicken intelligence, here's how the head poking out thing often happens. A chicken's instinct when frightened is to flee/fly. So they try to follow this instinct, but they bang up against the wall of their pen which limits their escape. They then frantically try to find a way out moving down the line of the fence until they get to the corner, where they can clump up with other frantic birds. This is often where a predator can grab them through the wire.

    A similar thing happens to doves when they fly up and flutter at the top of their aviary: raccoons grab 'em from above.
  5. blueseal

    blueseal Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 3, 2008
    i use the 2x4 welded wire fence 5ft tall. no roof on top and nothing around the 2x4 holes . havent had a predator problem yet and its been 3 years . they stick ther head out thru all the time. have about 200 ft of fenced run now and plan to add another 150 ft .
  6. Intheswamp

    Intheswamp Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 25, 2009
    South Alabama
    This is an old thread, but I'm curious about how your 2x4 welded wire has worked out for you. It's been six years now since you've posted the above statement. Have you had any issues in that time? What type of predators do you have? Thanks.


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