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Does my chicken run need a top? help please

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by dpayne, Apr 18, 2009.

  1. dpayne

    dpayne New Egg

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    Apr 18, 2009
    Hi

    I am new to keeping chickens, i have just built a chicken house and am now going to build the run, i am not sure if the run needs to have a top if i lock chickens in their house at night or does the run need a top to stop the chickens getting over the sides? if it didnt need a top how high would the sides need to be?

    any help most aprreciated

    thanks
    D
     
  2. CoopCrazy

    CoopCrazy Brooder Boss

    Mar 3, 2009
    Columbus,IN
    First [​IMG] Second I put a top on mine. 1. so I don't have to clip their wings. 2. predator proofing

    I used deer netting that i got for 14.99 at menards. It works great and i only used a third of it. So if I do need to replace it i have extra.
     
  3. dpayne

    dpayne New Egg

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    Apr 18, 2009
    thank you, is it bad to clip their wings? i live in england so animals we would get would be foxes, i also have a cat? do you knwo if my cat woud be ok with the chickens? thanks
     
  4. thechickenchick

    thechickenchick Born city, Living country

    Mar 8, 2008
    Eaton, Colorado
    I do not have a top. We have fox, raccoon, coyotes, badgers, owls, hawks and cats!! The cats are in the run often to see what goodies the chickens are eating. I have never had a problem with my cats. We have 9 outdoor cats and 27 chickens.

    As far as height, ours is 6ft tall. However we have a ladder roost that gets them 3 feet from the top and none of them have ever tried to escap! Maybe I have lazy chickens!! Our intent was to put a top on it, we just haven't yet. Thankfully we have had no issues. I do lock them in the coop every night and go flying out the door if I see a hawk outside!

    For peace of mind you may want to, but I don't think its necesary. I do have a friend who came home to a huge owl in her coop having a late night snack. She had gotten home late and walked in to her dark coop to find a visitor!
     
  5. CoopCrazy

    CoopCrazy Brooder Boss

    Mar 3, 2009
    Columbus,IN
    It's not bad to clip their wings there are actually a couple of posts on here that teach you step by step. Just do a search for them.. I don't just because i'm lazy... [​IMG] lol.. The cats I would only worry about with chicks Most big chickens can hold there own... The foxes definite problem. You really need to have a good fence covered and a solid coop.. Foxes can squeeze into anything really.. So no gaps or holes some folks even bury fencing around their coop and run. Or do a skirt of fencing 18 to 20 inches from the bottom of run.. Hope that helps ..
     
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2009
  6. emilyweck

    emilyweck Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 9, 2009
    Eugene, Oregon
    Welcome! I am wondering about the wing clipping, too. Do you have hawks, owls.....? I think that a top would predator proof you run from those guys. They are a real threat where I live so I put a top on mine. It's piece of mind for me when I'm away.
     
  7. funkychicken

    funkychicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    East Texas
    I have a roof to my run...welded wire fencing...also I have a cat ...he has been exposed to the gals since they were chicks...he understands that they are family and seems to like to lounge around the coop/run if they are in and will watch over them when they are out in the yard...he is not your typical cat I guess but he is old and wise and the girls seem to appreciate his watchful eye.
     
  8. dpayne

    dpayne New Egg

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    Apr 18, 2009
    hey we dont have any hawks or anything like that here, if you put a lid on do you need to lock them in their house at night? i am thinking that if you have to do that anyway then thay may not need a top no bird prey? oo so confusing
     
  9. CoopCrazy

    CoopCrazy Brooder Boss

    Mar 3, 2009
    Columbus,IN
    I think it's more what you are comfortable with... I don't shut my girls up and my nieghbors don't want my chickens in their yard.. So i covered mine... I think this falls back on personal preferences..
     
  10. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    Quote:Where on earth do you live that has no hawks? I do not think any such place exists except on an ocean liner in the middle of the ocean [​IMG] I can essentially guarantee you DO have hawks, even if you've never *noticed* any. They will notice your chickens though...

    The other big daytime predator is loose dogs. Loose dogs can get over lots of fences if they see/smell chickens on the other side, and tend to devastate a flock.

    if you put a lid on do you need to lock them in their house at night?

    I would. It is a whole lot safer. OTOH if yo don't mind taking the attitude of 'oh well, time to get more chickens' and are comfortable with the risk, certainly there is no *requirement*.

    Good luck, have fun, welcome to BYC,

    Pat​
     

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