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Building new coop, found interesting idea.

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by jdywntr, Sep 25, 2010.

  1. jdywntr

    jdywntr Songster

    Oct 31, 2009
    Somerville, AL
    I have five 3 week (approx) chicks at home and I am in the process of searching for a coop design to build. I have come across alot of coops but I am more concerned about the attached run because of the critters (oppossums, raccoons, rats etc) that we have in Florida. I came across this site online and the idea seems great.

    "Line the run and the hen house sub-floors (dirt) with chicken wire, attaching it to the insides of the 4x4s with staples. This important step will foil any attempts of predatory critters from digging under the foundation in hopes of a juicy chicken dinner. Now fill the coop and run with nice earthy soil to the tops of the 4x4s. "

    This seems like a great way to ensure nothing digs under and seems easier than digging a trench to bury wire. I would maybe use something stronger than chicken wire though.
    Any opinions?

    Here is the link to the article.

  2. Kittymomma

    Kittymomma Songster

    Sep 9, 2009
    Olympia, WA
    I did an apron (2') around the outside instead. I wanted the chooks to be able to scratch around inside the run and the apron serves the same purpose since digging critters start next to the fence, I've never had one figure out that it could get in if it backed up a few feet before digging. No snakes here though so I'm not sure if that would make a difference.

    Edit: 'cause the apron is 2 feet not 2 inches. [​IMG]
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2010
  3. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    Quote:X 2.

    I prefer the apron OUTSIDE the run, for that reason. You can always cover it with soil, or gravel, or paving stones, so it's not visible, but secure.
  4. jdywntr

    jdywntr Songster

    Oct 31, 2009
    Somerville, AL
    The apron is a good idea too. I wasn't worried about them scratching because the wire mesh would be covered with 4" of soil. It would be cheaper to do an apron though. Thanks for the input. [​IMG] What type of wire mesh did you use for your apron?
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2010
  5. NHchicks

    NHchicks Songster

    May 13, 2010
    The bottom of our coop is chicken mesh, and I'm glad because I never have to worry about anything getting into that coop. BUT - my chickens free range all day, so they don't scratch in the coop. Probably a whole different story.

    Oh, and my dog really helps with daytime critter control.
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2010
  6. Yay Chicks!

    Yay Chicks! Songster

    Apr 15, 2010
    Forest Grove, OR
    4" of soil over the wire is nothing to a chicken. They will displace that in no time [​IMG] . I did an apron on the outside as well.
  7. Nostalchic

    Nostalchic Songster

    I also have an apron of hardware cloth, and that has worked very well. 4 inches of soil over chicken wire may sound like a lot, but my chickens are excellent excavators, and would hit that chicken wire pretty quickly when working up a nice dust bath. And, depending on your predator load, chicken wire is not that difficult for some predators to just tear away from the staples.

  8. jdywntr

    jdywntr Songster

    Oct 31, 2009
    Somerville, AL
    So glad I found this website. Being a new chicken mom, I would have assumed that 4" was plenty. I think I'll go with the apron. Thanks all. Do you think that 14 gauge welded wire with 2x4 openings would work for the apron or would hardware cloth be better?
  9. True Grit

    True Grit Songster

    I did the coated chicken wire inside and put about 6 inches of SAND not soil on top and they've never scratched down that far yet. I would have used hd cloth but the local store was out. I did put a 12 inch apron of hardward cloth around the outside which I now wish had been 2 ft but anyway nothing has tried to dig under yet as far as I can tell. I really do recommend sand over soil. It dries very quickly and doesn't get muddy. Have fun![​IMG]
  10. OregonChickenGal

    OregonChickenGal Songster

    Jul 26, 2010
    Central Oregon
    Quote:Go with the hardware cloth. Much tougher.

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