Hardware cloth floor in Pacific Northwest?

Kris5902

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I'm looking at designs for chicken tractors, and want to make something mobile and suitable for laying hens which I don’t have to muck out. Does anyone have any experience in using hardware cloth floors in cold/wet climates? I’m thinking a Suscovich style tractor with a raised and enclosed roosting area with a hardware cloth floor so the night droppings fall through a’la a Justin Rhodes chickshaw.

I live in the Southern Gulf Islands of B.C. Canada, so we get cold wet winters with several weeks to a month of freezing temps, but it rarely drops below zero for more than a week or so at once.
 
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aart

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Did a quick google on the Suscovich style tractor, not a bad design from my quick perusal. But didn't see....does it normally have wire on bottom? Or do you plan on raising it off the ground?

If you put HC on the bottom, you'll have to muck it out, poops won't just fall thru 1/2" holes. I would think any wire on bottom would make it harder to move could cause foot injuries when the chickens try to scratch at ground.
 

Kris5902

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I’m thinking of adding a solid walled night shelter at the back about two feet deep and raised off the ground, running the full width, just for night protection. I’m worried about drafts coming up underneath though.
 
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imnukensc

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The "floor" under the roost in my raised coop is 1"X2" welded wire. All of the poop doesn't fall through that. I still have to brush some through with a deck brush every 2 or 3 weeks. Beats the heck out of cleaning a poop board, though.
 

Ridgerunner

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I use 1/2" hardware cloth floors in my brooder and grow-out coop. If I had it to do again I'd use 1" in the grow-out coop. At some point between 3 and 4 months of age the poop stops falling through.

One thing about wire. Sometimes it has little sharp nubs on it that can damage chickens' feet. That's from the manufacturing process, possibly welding but more likely the galvanizing process. But that is all going to be on the same side due to gravity. So before you put it on check carefully to see if it has any sharp points, if it does, put them underneath.
 

CanadaEh

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a raised and enclosed roosting area with a hardware cloth floor so the night droppings fall through a’la a Justin Rhodes chickshaw.

i am planning to build something like that, but for 3 seasons only. I recon with an open (hardware cloth) floor and the roosts just slightly above it, it will be extremely drafty in strong winds in the winter.
 

Kris5902

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The "floor" under the roost in my raised coop is 1"X2" welded wire. All of the poop doesn't fall through that. I still have to brush some through with a deck brush every 2 or 3 weeks. Beats the heck out of cleaning a poop board, though.

Do they ever have issues walking over the wire? How high above the floor do you put the roosts? Any problems with frost bite on their toes or temperature issues?
 

Kris5902

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One thing about wire. Sometimes it has little sharp nubs on it that can damage chickens' feet. That's from the manufacturing process, possibly welding but more likely the galvanizing process. But that is all going to be on the same side due to gravity. So before you put it on check carefully to see if it has any sharp points, if it does, put them underneath.

thanks for the info!
 

imnukensc

Crowing
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Do they ever have issues walking over the wire? How high above the floor do you put the roosts? Any problems with frost bite on their toes or temperature issues?

They don't walk on the wire. It's not the entire floor of the coop. It's only under the roost. My coop is small---only 5X5 and only 4 feet high on the tall side. The wire under the roost is 2x5. Roost is about 2 and a half feet above the floor. No problems with frostbite here in the midlands of South Carolina.

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