Chickens which can jump over fences??

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Awestruck, Jan 27, 2017.

  1. Awestruck

    Awestruck Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 15, 2012
    I am looking to get some chickens for our back yard and am doing some research on the different breeds. I need to find chickens that are not able to jump over fences. I don't want to lose my little flock by having them jump out of the yard into the street or in some other dangerous place! Thanks.
  2. azygous

    azygous True BYC Addict

    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    Then choose the heavier breeds such as Cochin and Brahma. They reach a size within two years that prohibits flying up to high places.

    Yet, even though these heavy breeds are far less likely to flee to fence tops, it takes 18 months to two years for them to put on enough weight to discourage acrobatics.

    Having an interesting run or free range yard keeps the chickens involved in investigating possibilities within there own area. Having vegetation to browse on and good soil in which to scratch for insects will help generate this interest. Plenty of cover is also important such as shrubs and trees to protect from sky predators. In the absence of natural cover, erecting lean-tos and overhangs will be helpful.

    Make your yard as chicken friendly as possible, and they're more likely not to want to leave it.
    1 person likes this.
  3. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    Choosing a heavier breed is well and good to keep your chicken contained, but remember if any chicken can get out a predator can get in.

    Folks can live in a place years and years, swear they have no predators. Get a few chickens, it's like ringing a dinner bell. Just sayin'. Enclosed runs are literally a lifesaver.

    Feather footed birds are traditionally more docile, they're not as likely to hop a fence. Mediterranean breeds like Leghorns, Andalusians, etc are prone to fly. Game birds like to roam, probably not a good choice for you in this case.
    1 person likes this.
  4. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    I use a 48” high electric netting for my chickens. A couple of times I’ve had mature dual-purpose hens fly over it. But I practically never have any get out, these got out by going out of a gate when I got careless. They easily cleared that 4’ high fence with a lot of room to spare when I tried to herd them back to the gate. Chickens don’t herd easily.

    When I raise adolescent birds with the flock I do occasionally have birds get out, usually young cockerels. They get in their fights and the loser goes vertical to get away if he is trapped against the fence. Sometimes he comes down on the wrong side. This used to happen pretty regularly but I’ve learned a few tricks to help.

    If I build sharp corners into my netting they get trapped more often. Now I use flattened corners. In your backyard fencing you probably can’t do that, property lines and all that. I also discovered that if I build it fairly wide as opposed to long and narrow fewer get trapped. Your back yard should be pretty much like that so this should not be all that big a problem, even with square corners. This kind of stuff can happen, but if you are not raising adolescents, especially cockerels, it really doesn’t happen often.

    A very common way for chickens to get out is by perching. Chickens love to perch, just for fun. They can fly up to some pretty high places. If the top of your fence looks like a good place to perch, say it is solid, it’s not all that unusual for a chicken to fly up there for fun. Who knows which side it might fly down on? I don’t know what your fence looks like, but the fix for this is to have wire fencing stick up several inches above the top of your solid fence so they don’t see a good place to land. I’ve done this and it can be done in a way that it doesn’t look as ugly as it sounds.

    All this does not mean you will never have a chicken get out. I don’t give guarantees for chicken behaviors. You might have a building or tree limb near the fence they fly up to perch on. I’ve had a couple that once they learned they could get out of a run with 5’ high wire fencing, they flew out daily. But people keep chickens contained in fences only 3’ high. The chickens can get out but do they really want to?
    1 person likes this.
  5. Cindy in PA

    Cindy in PA Overrun With Chickens

    Jul 8, 2008
    Fleetwood, PA
    Put netting over the run & they will stay in. It will also keep hawks out. Last I checked you could buy 100 ft. of 7 foot tall deer netting for $20-30. You can lay it over all configurations of runs. I had heavy breeds over the years & always had 1 or 2 that could fly over a 6 foot fence no matter what. Good luck.
    1 person likes this.

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