chicken Run with no roof?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by stampntam, May 17, 2010.

  1. stampntam

    stampntam Songster

    Apr 13, 2010
    Spring Grove, PA
    My hubby does not want to put a roof on our run, not making me very happy. So is there anyone out there that does not have a roof on their run and how do you keep the food and water from getting wet when it rains. There food and water are currently in the house but I want to move it outside in the run when they get older(only 5 weeks old) but I really think it needs to be covered some way. thanks
  2. elmo

    elmo Songster

    May 23, 2009
    Some feeders come with covers on them, like the big range feeders. You could fashion a little roof to go over your feeder, like the platform feeders they make for wild bird feeders. You're right about not wanting the food to get wet, because then it could get mouldy and that's very dangerous.

    If there's no roof over your run, you'll also have to consider the possiblility that hawks might take your chickens, unless you have some wire or netting over the run.

    I really like having roofed runs on rainy days, plus the roof does provide some shade on the sunny ones, too.
  3. lakeontariochicks

    lakeontariochicks In the Brooder

    Mar 12, 2010
    Lake Ontario, NY
    My hubby didn't want a roof either at first! I am still not sure why, but he tends sometimes to not believe some of the things that I tell him. I finally told him that BYC'ers all put roofs on their runs- 1. to keep hawks from getting them and 2. Once they are big enough, they would be flying out all the time. We are now going to be putting a roof on the run. It took him watching the hawk that's been flying around the past few days(even though the chicks only went out to the coop yesterday) to realize that they will be a threat.
    Good luck, hopefully he'll come around to your way of thinking soon! [​IMG]
    NancyA and PennyM like this.
  4. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    You can still build just a little lean-to type shelter for the food, almost like a small kitchen table, except with a slanted roof so that chickens can't hang out on top. Place it up against your current coop for even better rain protection. Make it big enough (maybe 4x4) and a few chickens can even hang out underneath if it's raining outside.
  5. stampntam

    stampntam Songster

    Apr 13, 2010
    Spring Grove, PA
    It does have netting over the top, but I can't convince him we need a roof. I will try to take a picture today to share.
  6. bigstack

    bigstack Songster

    Jan 4, 2010
    Texarkana, TX
    I use a 5 gallon bucket mad into a feeder. I found a huge aluminum bowl and just flipped it over and placed it ontop of the bucket! It works perfect! It covers all the feed and is just high enough to allow them to eat. It has been through 2 BIG rain storms and the only moisture is from water bouncing back up into the pan. I just raised it up using a big concrete pad. (4" ) I use an automatic trough waterer from TSC $12 in a metal feed pan. I just cut a 2x4 down and mounted the waterer to it. So far it works great! I just have to reduce the pressure a lil bit.

    Good Luck and God Bless!
  7. stampntam

    stampntam Songster

    Apr 13, 2010
    Spring Grove, PA
    here is the run

    chicks in run
    Last edited: May 17, 2010
  8. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging 9 Years

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    Quote:Actually I don't worry about their water getting wet when it rains. (Sorry, I couldn't resist) I try to keep it out of the sun in the warmer weather so it stays cooler, but in the winter I use a black rubber bowl and keep it in the sun so it doesn't freeze as much. I think shade on the water in the summer is important.

    I agree it is important to keep the feed dry because of the mold. That stuff can kill them. That alone is reason to keep it dry. Another benefit is that it can save money. It is very difficult to come up with a way to feed them that they don't spill some on the ground. If the ground it falls on is wet, it dissolves and becomes a rotten, stinky mess. If the ground is dry and you occasionally let them run out of feed in the feeder (which I purposely do about twice a week) they will clean it up, especially if you feed pellets instead of crumbles.

    I just saw the photos. Since you have a net over the top so they cannot get out, you don't have to worry about having something with a roof so steep thay cannot get up there and use it as a launch pad to excape. Somoebody will probably come up with a better way, but I like the idea of a small shelter built against the coop so the coop helps protect it against blowing rain from one direction at least.

    We all have different set-ups and conditions. Part of my run is covered, mostly for shade purposes, and part is open. Not all BYC'ers have covered runs. Some don't even have runs but just let their chickens free range. We are all different.

    Good luck!
  9. gibsonbuzz

    gibsonbuzz Songster

    Mar 22, 2010
    Coloma, Michigan
    My 8x12 run has an open roof with welded wire fence on top. I got a 5x7 tarp and attached it to the top to provide shade and some rain protection. I have a hawk, and coon population here too.
    Last edited: May 17, 2010
    Flock In Texas likes this.
  10. You have a lovely run! You don't NEED a roof, although it is nice. I don't have a covered run, and have had my coop and birds for about a year now. I did not have any covering over it till spring, which is why they were under house arrest from December to March when I at least got netting on top of the run. (I lost 2 birds to fox and hawk). I would like to roof a section of the run so that the chickens will be more likely to use the run in winter snow (they did NOT like getting their toes in the snow [​IMG] ). We will be replacing the netting with sturdier wire this summer, and have a fencer we will be installing with a couple of strands of wire to deter the fox. [​IMG]
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2010

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