coop design what now?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by 2MuddyBoots, Apr 14, 2012.

  1. 2MuddyBoots

    2MuddyBoots Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 11, 2012
    Clermont county, Ohio
    I am trying to set up a coop.... and I am to a point I have read too much! so here is the deal, we finally own our own home where we can have chickens! yay!(been a dream for years)We have a big shed in our back yard that I put a wall up in to convert the right side to a coop. I also have a big 7x12' chain link dog run that was left by the previous owners the that I have pushed up and secured to the outside of the coop and cut a door.... now what? we have 3/4 of an acre completely fenced with welded wire and metal posts about 5ft high. starting this I thought that this was enough but the more I read the more I am wondering about security of the run. My plan is to let them out of the run as often as I can to free range our fenced in yard.... I have used what ever is available to me for free and would like to strive to keep this endeavor enjoyable and cost "free". so what do I have to find or spend money on to make the chain link run safe. (Originally I thought nothing but I don't want to feed the wildlife well loved chickens) Is this going to work to let them free range with the fenced in yard? is chain link going to deter predators? maybe foxes and dogs will be stopped by our welded wire fencing?? so only worry bout coons n such?
    We live in southern ohio near the town/sorta suburby but then close to farms and woods.
    Thanks for any and all info it will help me so much.


    "A foolish man seeks wealth in the distance,
    a wise man grows it under his feet."
  2. chfite

    chfite Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 7, 2011
    Taylors, SC
    In general, not much is coming through the chain link fence. Many things can reach through the large openings or dig underneath the fence. Depending upon how tall it it, dogs might easily jump it. It is a start.

  3. MrsSerfesME

    MrsSerfesME Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 13, 2012
    Westbrook, ME
    Congrats on the new house, I as well am a newbie with a new house that I can finally have chickens at, so feel your excitement. I will have to agree that the chain link fence will probably keep bigger animals out unless they can climb or jump it to get over it, but they will probably do their best to reach through the holes or dig under it to get to the chickens.

    I can tell you with my few years of experience with our raccoon friends who use to steal our wild bird feeders, they are bold and smart and determined. One of them got so used to us telling him to go away and get off the feeder that he stopped running away when we came out and we could literally stand 2 feet from him yelling at him and he would just look us like we were bothering his meal.

    Most dogs are smart and determined, too. Hawks can also swoop down into tight places. You may want to look at putting some type of screen on the top of the chain link fenced area, maybe even run a couple foot high section along the bottom part of the chain link fence. You might be able to get some screen or something similar off a neighbor or something. It's not that expensive at a hardware or home improvement store I don't believe.

    Just some suggestions. We have similar creatures here in Maine to protect our future chickens against.
  4. 2MuddyBoots

    2MuddyBoots Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 11, 2012
    Clermont county, Ohio
    I know that hardware cloth is best but with the chain link I wonder if i could use the 1" hex wire as reach through protection, plus I can see my coop and run from my kitchen so could I use plastic fence that is like hardware cloth instead? not for the roof but for reach through? also the run is over my head so more that 6ft so it would have to be a part kangaroo dog.[​IMG]
  5. Brookliner

    Brookliner Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 18, 2012
    Southern New Hampshire
    You would only need to put the hardware cloth 2 ft to 3 ft up from the ground. That way racoons can't reach through the chain link and grab a chicken. I have had this happen before the racoons eat the chicken through the chain link fence. Very messy. With the 1/2 inch welded hardware cloth they can't get their cleaver little hands through to grab the chicken. Also if you have weasels, skunks, rats, mice, voles, or fox as predators they will dig under the chain link fence. So it is best to get 3 ft. high hardware cloth and bury 6 inches or better yet 1 ft in the ground and attach it to the chain link on the inside of the chain link. You can use zip ties or wire to attach it. If you have owls and hawks you will need to put netting over the top. You have to size up what predators you have and out think them.
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2012

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