4 Foot Tall Hardware Cloth or 5 Foot Tall Welded Wire?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by hawkeyext, Apr 5, 2016.

  1. hawkeyext

    hawkeyext Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 5, 2016
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    Hello,

    We're bringing in 25 Rhode Island Reds soon and are debating our fencing options. We have ground hogs, coyotes, and hawks for certain.

    We have a field that is 125ft x 85ft are planned on devoting 2/3rd to crops and 1/3rd to the chickens.

    I've read hardware cloth is the way to go but cannot find any that are taller than 4ft. I've read ideally this fence should be 5-6 feet above ground, and another foot below ground. So my question is which of these is the better option:

    1. Install 4ft tall hardware cloth above ground, then use scrap fencing and go 1-2 feet below ground with it, and attach them together. Mesh would be 1/2inch.

    2. Install 5 or 6ft tall welded wire, possibly go in-ground with some of it or use scrap fencing to go below ground. Mesh would be 2"x4".

    Is it better to have a 4ft hardware cloth fence that is 1/2inch mesh, or a taller welded wire fence with 2x4 mesh? I cannot find taller hardware cloth and any welded wire with smaller holes is too expensive.

    Any advice is appreciated.
     
  2. cavemanrich

    cavemanrich Overrun With Chickens

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    The welded wire would be better to keep out the stronger predators. Raccoons can go over the top, so that is an issue to deal with. A secure coop locked for the night is only way to deal with that problem. Ground hogs are impossible to keep out if they really want in. Not sure they are danger to chickens.??? Hawks need to be kept out from the top with netting, and that gets to be challenging since you want a large area. I am referring to $$$$ challenging.
    Have you considered chain link fencing.??? Sometimes you can locate a quantity as used, or extra from a job. It is secure .
    WISHING YOU BEST.. and [​IMG]
     
  3. blucoondawg

    blucoondawg Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Your talking a pretty large area it will get costly with hardware cloth. If it were me I would run a multi strand electric fence it's gonna be cheaper in my opinion. I would definitely go with chain-link for something that large if electric isn't an option I wouldn't dig it in the ground either I'd run a strand of electric fence low around the fence to deter diggers
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2016
  4. Aust1227

    Aust1227 Out Of The Brooder

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    We had a similar question when we were doing our chicken area. We framed out a 16X32 section of the yard. We used 5' welded wire fencing first, then ran 2' welded wire on the bottom section. Later we added electric wire to the outside, and laid 12"x12" concrete pads around the outside.

    We use this particular enclosure to grow out 25 Freedom Ranger meat birds at a time. But it could easily satisfy 10-12 layers full time.

    Best of luck with your project!
     
    1 person likes this.
  5. hawkeyext

    hawkeyext Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 5, 2016
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    Thanks for the advice everyone. Based on the feedback I'm tempted to add a 5ft welded wire fence to the existing 4ft chain link fence, with one foot going into the ground. I could keep the one strand of electric wire up top, and add one down below.

    I'm still not sure what to do about the hawks. Aside from scarecrows, shiny objects, and a shotgun, if anyone has any ideas please let me know. I read people have installed "roofs" made of fishing line...
     
  6. seatweaver

    seatweaver New Egg

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    We are completing our first run too. We got 13 chicks three weeks ago and I want to have the run ready for them. Our run is 12 x 24 feet and 6 feet high. I initially used 24 inch chicken wire inside 2x4 inch welded wire with a 24 inch chicken wire skirt. [​IMG]
    We are also adding 2x4 inch wire over top of the run because I know we have hawks, owls, and raccoons. I hope this will be enough.
     
  7. blucoondawg

    blucoondawg Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have netting on my run but it's smaller than what you are talking, your best bet is to have some shelters for the chickens to hide under, bushes or pallets up on legs they can run under for cover, securing a very large run from hawks is pretty tough.
    If your are running a electric wire down low to deter predators from messing around the fence then you shouldn't need to bury the fence to deter diggers the hot wire should do that
     
  8. hawkeyext

    hawkeyext Out Of The Brooder

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    Good idea. I think we'll use spare crates and build a shelter or two for them to hide under. Thanks!
     
  9. seatweaver

    seatweaver New Egg

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    Our completed run which my wife calls " Stalag 13"
     
  10. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    No matter how secure your fencing is, you should still shut them up in the coop each night.
     

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