Chicken Exploration


In the Brooder
7 Years
Apr 18, 2012
I have a total of six chickens, all hens, one Buff Orpington, four Rhode Island Reds, and one that I'm not sure about. Of the ones that I do know, they aren't quite laying yet, but are showing signs that they will be, the last one is about 3 weeks older. They are all happy and healthy, and I leave them to roam around my suburban back yard while I'm at work and no one is home. Unfortunately, they have taken to jumping my fencing (regular chain-link) into my neighbors' yards, and while my neighbors don't mind, I'm afraid that they may let out their big dogs, or they might just leave the backyards and get into the road. Is there any way to curb this desire to leave the yard? I have taken to piling leaves for them to play in and hiding food for them to search for, and it helps, but is not quite doing the trick... Any ideas?
Some folks have good success with running some wire or fishing line above the chain link, the birds can't see it and get a suprise when they try to land there. Netting is also available to run on top of your fence. Whatever you decide to do, please confine them from your neighbor's yard soonest. It's not cool to have your birds on other folks property. If you need to coop them until you can get the fence fixed, then do so.
Obviously, I realize that I need to keep them on my property, hence this thread. Unfortunately, the fishing wire did not quite work the way I hoped it would. I'm thinking I'm going to have to run a few lines of it at least another foot higher. Even more unfortunately, I doubt it will look very nice when I am done, and it would be a lot of work. I'm open to other suggestions, if you have them...
Could you use a low voltage strand of electric fence ribbon? I'm thinking the 1/2" size white tape, that you could power from a battery pack (like a Zareba charger on a low setting). I have no idea how chickens fare with electric fences, or what voltage might be safe, but it works well with my horses on just enough to be unpleasant but not hurt... I'd think that after a few times of trying to land atop the fence and getting zapped, they'd cut it out quick.

Another thought is rather than going up with fishwire or such, could you go out two or three feet from the top of the fence with poultry netting? Like a net canopy projecting from the fence into your yard, preventing them from even flying up - and it would likely look better than trying to raise the fence wire by wire.
I have clipped their right flight wings to attempt to keep them from being able to control their flight, but it seems that they don't need them to jump up to the fence, or even get over my chicken wire... I am surprised at them every time I see them in the neighbors yard...

Also, I cannot use electric as my neighbors on one side have young children, and the last thing I want to happen is their kids grab it, even if it didn't actually hurt them.
I'll try the few feet of net canopy next, I guess. I'm not sure it'll stop them short of a full privacy fence, but it's worth a shot!
we ended up having to clip both the wings of one of my all to frequent flyers. With one wing clipped she was still able to get over an 8 ft fence. Since having both clipped she now stays safely inside the run.
All right, then I will have to cut both wings and see how it works. Thank you!

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