Covering the top of the run with chicken wire or?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Stormy, Mar 18, 2015.

  1. Stormy

    Stormy Out Of The Brooder

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    Need some input please on using regular chicken wire across the top of the run.
    We live on some acreage and there are woods nearby.

    Should I spend the extra $ and time to put the hardware cloth across the top or is chicken wire ok?

    Also how far up on the sides do you recommend the hardware cloth? If the run is 7' tall, for example would you run the hardware cloth just up the first 4' and then chicken wire for the remaining 3'?

    Planning to put the hardware cloth along the bottom perimeter either burying or aproning....
     
  2. Odelia

    Odelia Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Do you have raccoons? If so keep in mind that they can get through regular chicken wire. Personally I put boards up the first couple of feet of my run and then covered the rest with hardware cloth. I then put a sheet metal roof on top. I wanted a roof to give them shade in the summer and to help keep the snow and rain out so that they didn't have to live in a muddy mess much of the year. I also put the boards up the sides to help do the same. I got all of the wood for my run for free by breaking down pallets.
     
  3. Chickenshoe

    Chickenshoe Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am planning on covering my entire run with hardware cloth 1/4 inch 19 guage. The reason is simple, your intention is to have chickens to keep for eggs or meat...why would you risk a weasel or raccoon slipping through or cutting cheap chicken wire? go the extra mile and protect your ladies.. also remember to burry the hardware cloth 1 foot under ground also.. attempts will be made to dig and burrow under,,they will hit the mesh and say.. "screw this",, I will find something else to eat... Id recommend 19 ga wire also,, heavier... enjoy your birds
     
  4. Odelia

    Odelia Chillin' With My Peeps

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    [​IMG]

    Here is a photo of mine.
     
  5. georgiagail

    georgiagail Chillin' With My Peeps

    One of ours...[​IMG]
     
  6. CrazyTalk

    CrazyTalk Chillin' With My Peeps

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    There's a point some of us get to where spending $1000 on hardware cloth to protect $50 worth of birds just isn't a wise investment.

    I use a lot of 2x4 welded wire - and I make a point of not having any places where the birds will roost/lay against the wire ( I do wood for the first 18" up or so, and then go to wire). It won't keep mice and rats out, but it'll hold up a heck of a lot better than chicken wire if you're dealing with dogs/raccoons/etc.
     
    1 person likes this.
  7. Odelia

    Odelia Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I built my run with one roll of hardware cloth. I think it was $35 dollars. I am also protecting a lot more that $50 worth of birds. I also found the amount of time and work I was putting into the project to be worth just as much as the cost of the Materials. I also wanted a structure that would not be an eyesore on my property. I built my run for about $150 though some of that money wasn't necessary. Things like a gallon of long lasting stain in a color I liked. I could have finished the wood with something cheaper. Though I went with spending a few more dollars now and buying something that is suppose to last a lot longer. That will save me time, work, and money in the future. I also could have gone with a chain link fence structure, but I don't like the way they look. At the end of the day I am the one that has to look at it for years to come. Build what you can afford first. As secure as you can make it. As attractive as you can make it. There is a balancing act. Some area's have far more predators. Some people have to worry about snakes and weasels others raccoons or dogs. Look at your risks and protect against them as best as you can.

    I don't know about you but food is expensive here. You may be able to buy chicks for $3.00 each, but what does it cost to raise them to laying age? It is 5+ months of feeding and waiting. If you have predators in your area they will learn that you have a coop that isn't secure. You won't just lose one bird once.
     
  8. CrazyTalk

    CrazyTalk Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I don't know the specifics of your run, but where I am it's $45/roll of 36"x25' 1/2" gap hardware cloth. A single roll of 60" welded wire costs me $90, and will do a run that is roughly 30x8, and covered ground to ceiling. To do the same thing in hardware cloth, I'd be looking at atleast a dozen rolls, and significantly more in structure costs to deal with the fact that it's nowhere near as rigid.


    I can get point-of-lay pullets pretty much any day of the week for $10, and often I can get them for less than $5 at local poultry swaps. The fact that it costs more than that to raise a bird to that age doesn't mean they're worth more than that.
     
  9. Chickenshoe

    Chickenshoe Chillin' With My Peeps

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    agreed. the aggravation of losing birds can be avoided by spending a few less dollars on something we all waste $ on (what ever that is for you).. Im going to do it right so it's not an eye sore and protects my birds
     
  10. Two Chicksahs

    Two Chicksahs Chillin' With My Peeps

    I just wanted to thank you for the suggestion of where to put welded hardware vs. Chicken wire. Our pen or run is about 20' x20' and we thought about putting the chicken wire on top but I have seen a raccoon just outside of the pen and we don't have hens yet. We ordered a store bought coop that we thought we can add onto eventually but I am a bit concerned about what to do to keep predators from getting in from the top or from an aerial assault. I know we have opossum in the area as well. You were right about it being cost prohibitive for the larger runs which was frustrating us and causing concern for the welfare of our future hens.
     

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