covered run necessary?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Smeamers, Apr 17, 2009.

  1. Smeamers

    Smeamers Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 16, 2009
    Kalamazoo, MI
    Is it necessary to cover the chicken run? Our original plan is to do a "chicken moat" style run around the garden. The plans that we saw for this on Mother Earth News' website, shows most of the run open. My good friend has a nice big run at her farm that isn't covered and has never had a problem. We plan on shutting the chickens in the coop at dark. What are the pros and cons of having a covered vs. open run? We do have a few coyotes in the area, but we also have a black lab and some nature lovin' home schooled kids that are playing outside all day, so we have a lot of activity going on in the backyard in general. We purchased 6' tall fencing and we only have heavy breed birds.
     
  2. Opa

    Opa Opa-wan Chickenobi

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    May 11, 2008
    Howell Michigan
    Quote:[​IMG]I'm always glad to see another person added to our Michigan thread. I have found a lot of really nice people here and I'm sure you will too.
    With regard to covered runs. I have both of my runs covered with heavy duty mesh to give added protection to my birds; however, when I decided to allow the girls access to the garden from October to May I had to leave them unprotected from airborn predators. Covering the entire garden would have been an expensive and mounumental undertaking. Of course they are at risk from hawks but to date I haven't had a problem and have decided that if I do lose a bird or two I will just have to adapt the attitude that hawks have to eat too.
     
  3. NJbirdlover

    NJbirdlover Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 16, 2009
    Salem County, NJ
    After reading all of the posts on here,-I am terrified that my chickens will be torn to pieces if I don't secure my coop like Fort Knox! With that in mind, yes I think it is a good idea to cover your run
     
  4. CoyoteMagic

    CoyoteMagic RIP ?-2014

    I've got a huge run. I can't afford to cover it. My girls have done fine in there with no problem. They are locked up at night. I lost 3 during free ranging but that was because a neighbor wasn't feeding his loose dogs.
     
  5. mrsgibber

    mrsgibber Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 3, 2008
    Bolton, CT
    I wasn't going to cover mine but just when they were ready to go out I noticed a pair of red tail hawks nested in the field right next to the run. I didn't want to take any chances so I covered it with chicken wire. Now I can rest easy.
     
  6. Tad

    Tad Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 16, 2008
    South TX on the border
    I have 2 one is covered one is not, the one I covered is the smaller and I covered it for shade more than anything, the one run that is not covered has stuff in it that provide shade and cover.....
     
  7. Chicken Fruit

    Chicken Fruit Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 25, 2009
    Echo Homestead
    I dont cover our runs for chickens, only ducks because in comparison theyre defenseless.

    I've seen where people take twins and make a grid on the top of their run to keep preditory birds from trying to get at them.
     
  8. LynneP

    LynneP Chillin' With My Peeps

    At the very least you need bird netting on top. But to be honest, if you really CAN put on a roof, I'd do it...[​IMG]
     

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