Best Run Material?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by NoVA Chicks, Jan 3, 2010.

  1. NoVA Chicks

    NoVA Chicks Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 6, 2009
    Falls Church, VA
    I'm going to have to build a run for my birds to protect them from predators (and their own astonishingly good flying ability). Turns out we have foxes, hawks, and my own dogs have not become as desensitized as I had hoped. I've got some chicks that are going to need a safe place to live once they outgrown my kitchen. :)

    I've done some searching and don't see anything definitive on the best material for a run, although I do remember reading at some point that what is sold at Home Depot as "chicken wire" is not a good solution??? Would a plastic product like this work:
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2010
  2. WestKnollAmy

    WestKnollAmy The Crazy Chicken Lady

    Apr 22, 2008
    upstate SC
    No, don't use that stuff! Worse than poultry wire.

    I have used dog kennels with the chain link fencing for some of mine but you still need to worry about predators digging underneath. I close mine up at night so they only use it during the day but I have heard others say that they had dogs dig under it during the day. I have mine set on 4" concrete blocks all around the edge.

    If I had my druthers I would frame in a run with 2x4's and use hardware cloth all over it (or what we call squirrel wire down here). Make a trench all the way around, dig down about 5", pour in concrete. Predators would have to go through the fence since they couldn't dig under or go over the top. And in the summer you could let them come and go from the coop at their leisure.
  3. OutdoorFun4

    OutdoorFun4 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 28, 2009
    Southern Maine
    We have fox and raccoons in the yard every night during the spring, summer and fall. This set up has been able to keep my birds safe. I even leave the door into the run from the coop open except for the coldest nights. (10 to -10)



    It has:

    A 4x4 base with P.T. 2X4 frame

    Hardware Cloth attached with Fender Washers and Screws and 1" Crown Staples

    Hardware Cloth was buried 16" down to deter digging predators.

    3- 4" of Sand cover the ground

    Roosts help add space and increase activity.
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2010
  4. NoVA Chicks

    NoVA Chicks Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 6, 2009
    Falls Church, VA
    OutdoorFun4, that's exactly the kind of thing I'm hoping to build. Thanks! [​IMG]
  5. mike67909

    mike67909 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 22, 2009
    Pinckney, Michigan

    have used a deer fencing from the above site, they have 7.5 ft tall fencing which is nice. Also they have a more heavy duty fencing that is stronger and harder for animals to chew through. I haven't had any breaches of security yet and I know a raccoon was on top of the coop. You may still want to run a 2-3 ft roll of poultry fencing around the bottom just in case. I am planning on using this stuff in the spring for my new chicken runs also have it around my garden to keep deer out.
  6. gsim

    gsim Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 18, 2009
    East Tennessee
    Outdoor fun has the right idea.

    Mine is too big to have done with hardware cloth mesh. I did 2 x 4 welded wire 6 ft tall, set in cement. Then I ran 2 ft tall run of chicken wire around inside at ground level. Then I electrified it with 4 rows of hot wire. My chooks get locked in every eve so I never worry about preds. Mine is open to the sky tho because it is around 2000 sq ft and would be really hard to put netting overhead. Hawks are a worry but heavy crow population keeps them on the move if they come around.[​IMG]

    ISSOLA Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 6, 2008
    North Shore, MA
    Quote:That is a brilliant set-up. Love the roosts. Very impressed with the hardware cloth that is buried deep up to 16"

    Any chance that you could show pics of the INSIDE the shed/pen? [​IMG]
  8. cobrien

    cobrien Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 16, 2009
    Oakland, CA
    I have a run very much like the pics above and love it. I have half of the run covered with recycled metal corrugated roofing instead of hardware cloth, and the other half covered with clear plastic corrugated roofing. This keeps the run dry and gives them access to sun and shade. If you get rain or snow you might want to consider this, it is really nice to have a dry run otherwise it can get mucky. Of course you don't have to cover the run, they'll be fine with it uncovered as long as their food stays dry. Also I have sand in the bottom of my run, which I also love.
    Good luck!

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