Cover the run or not cover the run?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by redstars, May 24, 2009.

  1. redstars

    redstars Chillin' With My Peeps

    583
    0
    139
    Mar 15, 2009
    south dartmouth ma
    I am in the process of building my run and was wondering what you guys and gals thought about covering the run area.
     
  2. ctychix

    ctychix Out Of The Brooder

    36
    0
    22
    Apr 15, 2009
    San Francisco East Bay
    For security purposes I would cover it. It not only provides shelter from the elements, but from overhead predators.
     
  3. CoopCrazy

    CoopCrazy Brooder Boss

    Mar 3, 2009
    Columbus,IN
    I covered and will continue to with Deernetting from Menards .. It was 15.00 for 7x100ft and I love it .. Easy to work with light and sturdy.. Ohh and its cheap and i always seem to have left overs for repairs etc
     
  4. DonnaBelle

    DonnaBelle Chillin' With My Peeps

    314
    0
    129
    Feb 15, 2009
    McIntosh County, OK
    We used a 10 x 10 ft. dog pen for our first run, and covered it with chicken wire. I think the best defense against flying predators is a good rooster who keeps an eye out and gives the signal to go into the coop.

    A friend gave us a big roo about 5 years old, and he is a great watch chicken. He was with 3 grown hens for about a year, but I just opened the door between him and about 50 mixed run 10 week old chicks. They seem to be doing fine, I have a large run now that is not covered, he seems to be keeping an eye on everyone, so far, so good. I hope he continues to do as good a job as he has in the past.

    And to think, he was going to be "coq a vin".

    DonnaBelle
     
  5. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    20,750
    4,323
    526
    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    Some reasons to cover the run are to keep it drier, to give shade to the chickens, to keep out predators, and to keep chickens in. A lot could be written about any of these, especially about predator protection. Did you have any specific reason in mind?
     
  6. redstars

    redstars Chillin' With My Peeps

    583
    0
    139
    Mar 15, 2009
    south dartmouth ma
    I should have worded my question a little different. Would you use solid material like tin? Lowes has some tin 2 feet by 8 feet sheets I thought might work well to keep the snow and rain out, but I was not shure if chickens like snow and rain? These are my first chickens, My run is only 10 ft by 20 ft Thanks.
     
  7. joebryant

    joebryant Overrun With Chickens

    Yes, make it high enough for you to walk in and cover it. Otherwise, you might as well not have a "run" per se; just stretch about 200 feet of 2 x 4 farm fencing free standing with no posts in a circle around your coop and let them free range inside that approximately 60 foot diameter circle.
    I have a run (see My BYC Page), but rather that fencing in my garden to protect it from my chickensk, I ran 200 feet of 2x4 wire (no posts) from my run's gate out into part of my yard and into the woods. The chickens are somewhat contained, but they love it, and I always know where they are and what they're doing.
     
    Last edited: May 24, 2009
  8. CoopCrazy

    CoopCrazy Brooder Boss

    Mar 3, 2009
    Columbus,IN
    Quote:Sorry .... My girls love the rain.. NOt one of them goes in out of it... It would make it easier to keep dry and not having snow build up inside should give your girls more time outside... I think it all boils down to if you have the extra $ to spend go for .. I doubt you will be dissapointed by it ...
     
  9. ZooMummzy

    ZooMummzy Queen of the Zoo

    Mar 31, 2008
    Philomath, Oregon
    Just finished our new coop yesterday and covering the run was a requirement for me. Even though we live in town, as we have been building the coop this past month, hawks have been circling overhead. I didn't want to take the chance of anything getting my girls.
     
  10. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    20,750
    4,323
    526
    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    Chickens don't seem to like snow but most don't mind rain. The problem with rain is that it gets the run muddy. If you can keep the run dry you will enjoy it much more and keeping the snow off will let your chickens out of the coop more in your Massachusetts winters. That is a good thing. If you do cover it, make sure it is strong enough to withstand your snows.

    I'd also try to divert water away from the run to keep it drier; ditches and gutters and downspouts to lead water away from the run.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by