Hardware cloth overkill?


8 Years
Aug 18, 2014
Needville Texas
My Coop
My Coop
I have my chickens at our farm, and I am not able to be there on a daily basis. My husband and I covered bottom, sides and top of run with 1/2 hardware cloth. We are expanding the run, and have the sides and top built with hardware cloth of course. I am wondering from those of you in a heavy predator infested area if skirting around the bottom of the run has been successful verses having it completely covering every square inch of the entire run?
I have a large amount of hardware cloth left, however just not sure if it's quite enough to cover the entire bottom of the run.
I will get more if needed, however I just want to get insight from you if I am overdoing this?
When we built the run, we dug down (and turned out) the hardware cloth another 18". I'm sure a skirt would work the same. We have fox, raccoon, coyote and mink. Our coop can't be seen from the house so we were extra careful when building the coop and run.

We've noticed where something has scratched around from time to time trying to get in but the run has never been breached, The coop is closed up at night.
Wow, it almost sounds a lot easier to just cover the entire bottom with hardware cloth. Our expansion is in area with tons of trees and I think it would be better to just lay the hardware cloth down and staple staple, and staple it to the bottom of the walls!
Thank you for replying!!
I feel like a properly done apron serves the purpose perfectly well. I personally do not see any need to cover the entire bottom of the run.

...all hardware cloth + a 24" apron held down with garden staples all around the bottom. Did not cover the bottom of the run. The grass is growing up through it nicely now and haven't had anything attempt to get in.
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Ok, thank you. How do you properly do an apron? That may seem like a stupid question, however I truly don't know? We have trees, so what is the process around the trees?
It was easy for me since I was working with straight lines...but I just rolled out a 24 inch roll of hardware cloth along the edges. Tucked about 3 or 4 inches under the 4x4's, and used garden staples to keep it all down. The theory being a predator is going to come right up to the wood and try and dig there (closest point to the chickens). Depending on the size of the trees you're talking about, you could cut out a section in the wire big enough for the trunk, then come at it from the other side with the same cutout to overlap...hold down with garden staples. Pictures might help...

Solid line around tree and to the end of the hardware cloth would be the cut...

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