Burying wire apron - how much?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by msviolaceous, Jun 12, 2011.

  1. msviolaceous

    msviolaceous Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 16, 2011
    We have a ten by ten by six dog kennel that will be our run. I'm going to be setting it up and digging a trench for the hardware cloth apron while the guys play with scary saws and things to build the coop.

    How tall does the raccoon guard overlay at the base of the fence need to be for standard hens- 18"? 24"? How far out does the dig guard part need to be and how far down do I need to dig? I am not sure if our local store will have 48" hardware cloth or just 36", so if I can do more I will. But assuming I can't, would 18" up and 18" out be ideal? Or 12" out and 24" up?

    Predator-wise, i'm not positive what all is in the area, but I know we have raccoons and evil neighbor dogs.

    Bonus question: I was originally going to cover the run with hardware cloth but I've decided that's pointless if I don't make the whole darn thing out of it, so is rolled chain link a reasonable alternative?

    Bonus bonus question: what do you recommend for reinforcing the connections between the chain-link and the frame?
  2. Toothless Willie

    Toothless Willie Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 6, 2011
    Quote:I am no expert, but we dug down only 6-8 inches and the same width and poured quickcrete dry into the trench then soaked it thoroughly. We used 36" hardware cloth. Above the hardware cloth it is chain link.

    Due to Red Tail Hawks, a family of Peregrin Falcons, and overhanging trees which snakes and squirels might use for access, we did use hardware cloth for the roof. GeorgiaGail posted pictures of our run in this forum. All of the hardware cloth is connected using lots and lots of zip/cable ties.
  3. msviolaceous

    msviolaceous Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 16, 2011
    Did your buried hardware cloth go straight down? I was thinking of doing an L shape but in a shallow, wide trench all around the outside, and burying that, so the bottom of the L is below the ground. The ground is really hard here and I won't be able to dig much more than 6", I think.
  4. bryan99705

    bryan99705 Chillin' With My Peeps

    You don't really want to or need to dig the wire in. Just attach one edge of a strip of 18" to 24" wire to the kennel panel and let it lay outward. The grass will grow thru it to hide it, you can mow over it, and a digging predator (fox or dog) will start their dig at the base of the veritcal panel and be stopped. Another reason not to dig it in is in case you decide to move the run to a different or better spot in the future, you can without tearing up the yard again. If you stop to consider that digging a barrier in loosens the dirt for the critter that's coming after your birds, it doesn't make sense to make it easy for him and digging in wire is a lot of work.

    As for stopping coons, remember they climb rather than dig to get at the birds so it take either a locked up coop or a wire top to stop it. You can get individual prefab chainlink kennel panels to use as a roof at Lowe's. The nice thing about using a panel as a roof is you can throw a tarp over it for shade and not have to duck for the sag in the center even in the rain.

    Another thing, please make sure the chainlink is securely fastened to the surrouning pipe frame securely. Some manufacturers only fast it every couple feet instead of at every outward corner.
  5. Downtoearth

    Downtoearth Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 3, 2016
    Milford, Ohio
    Your advise was the most helpful for my run. I can easily lay an apron and put heavy blocks on it but the idea of digging a trench did not appeal to me. I'm new at chickens in Ohio. In California, I didn't know any better, lol.
  6. organictoon

    organictoon Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 6, 2016
    Yes listen to Bryan... I buried mine and live with sand and run off and eventually it will just wear down so now I am putting down the apron on top of that all....so I wasted money and some back energy on that stupid 2 foot trench......

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by