bury the wire or wire bottomed run?


8 Years
Aug 26, 2011
So I am in the process of starting my chicken run and am contemplating do I bury the wire or should I just go with a wire bottomed run. I am new to chickens and am not sure which is best. I live in a rural town so the bigger predators may not be an issue but I dont want to see my girls getting killed over my stupidness. Any suggestions or alternatives would be great!

If I go with a wire bottom I will get fill dirt to cover the wire so they dont hurt their feet and they have dirt for other things.
In my coop I have a chicken wire run with metal poles at the bottom and the poles are buried . No predators have gotten in yet and I got my chickens in April!
knock on wood! Lol I also live in a rural area we have seen foxes and skuns and coyotes. But none this close.(Except a skunk but he was in the front of the house and the chickens are in the back. ) We also have 7 dogs so predators don't come around often
Hope this helped!
My neighbor had a few free range hens when we got ours and his disappeared shortly after so I am really nervous on what to do. I have one dog but he's a house pet and wouldnt be a good guard dog, and in my town it seems like everyones dogs run loose and its always my yard that they drop off their killings in, so Im afraid that If I dont bury the wire deep enough or I dont put a bottom on the run my hens will become dead yard art like everything else.

So that all being said how deep did you bury your metal poles?
An easier solution would be to make a wire apron for the run. 12-18 inches of hardware cloth or welded wire along the outside of the run on top of the ground. Attach it to the bottom of the run and stake it down in the ground. You could also use a row of large concrete patio pavers around the base of the run. Burying the wire is a lot of work and won't deter predators from digging, only from getting in.
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I have a 12" hardware cloth apron buried about 3" around the entire coop. I was worried about the chickens digging it up and hurting their feet, so I put pavers over the top to keep them from scratching it up. My coop is small though. Could get more expensive with a huge coop!

Here's a pic..
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I used an apron around the pen & no regrets... no predators. We're in hurricane territory right now, so I can't take a picture of our apron (coop on BYC page). The apron is gradually disappearig below the grass now anyway. This page has a pic of a simple apron that gives you the general idea. Very effective for predator-proofing. Good luck.
We made an apron, staked it down and covered it with gravel. Anyone who thinks they can dig through gravel will hit wire. We haven't seen any signs of digging.
I listened to the advice I got on here and put 18 inches of welded wire on top of the ground. I attached the wire to the bottom of the coop and run. On top of that I put the 12x12 inch plain grey pavers all the way around the pen and coop up against the base. If a coon or such animal gets through that I just don't know what to do.

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