Hardware cloth size

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by PlaidBattleAxe, Jan 3, 2014.

  1. PlaidBattleAxe

    PlaidBattleAxe Chillin' With My Peeps

    I see that there are a lot of different sizes and types of hardware cloth. What is ideal for a coop/run? I have got the jackpot of predators here in NW Pennsylvania (coyotes to raccoons but LOTS of mink too---I have a large reservoir flanking the woodsline of my back yard, so it's inevitable that I'll have problems from them), and I haven't started to build my coop yet--but I'm drawing up building plans. This may sound completely ignorant, but with the fine nature of this stuff, couldn't something with the jaw strength to chew through bone gnaw its way through the mesh of the hardware cloth too? The smallest square size I've found available so far has been 1/2"---but I know mice can squeeze through cracks. Is that big enough still that a mink might squeeze through too, or rats?
  2. The Lazy L

    The Lazy L Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 16, 2011
    I used 1/2", 19 gauge hardware for 20 months. Woods, with coons, possums, foxes, stray dogs and coyotes. I have not lost 1 chicken. Hanging feeder so what mice the chickens don't eat, will not get in the feed.
  3. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    It's possible, but unlikely. The couple breaches I've read about here, it was unclear how it failed and by what predator.
    19ga GAW 1/2" Hardware Cloth should keep all sized weasels/mink out.
    You can get 1/4", harder to find in wide rolls, but it's usually a lighter gauge wire.
    Key to HC is how you attach it. I used 1 1/4" long screws and 3/4" diameter washers every 8" or so.
    Or you can use staples to tack it up then cover all edges with trim wood and lots of screws.

    I found the best price on HC cloth was thru my local Ace hardware, small rural town where I am long time customer, they ordered it in a week and didn't charge extra for shipping because it was part of their weekly order. $105 for 48" x 100' roll.

    Good luck with your planning!
  4. chickengeorgeto

    chickengeorgeto Overrun With Chickens

    Dec 25, 2012
    Look into a welded wire with a mesh size of 1 inch X 1/2 inch or a 1 inch X 1 inch mesh. One place to look is Tractor Supply Company. The larger mesh size stretches your coop building budget and allows you to build bigger runs for the same money.
  5. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Making your coop bullet proof with smaller mesh for night time and using a larger mesh on the run can save money.
    Depends on your situation.
    Thanks about digger aprons for your plan.
  6. enola

    enola Overrun With Chickens

    Raccoons can reach a long way through 1 inch squares.......
    1 person likes this.
  7. PlaidBattleAxe

    PlaidBattleAxe Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thanks for the advice and tidbits everyone. I've got so much I'm trying to learn that it's kind of overwhelming, so thanks again!

    -Aart: Thanks for the bit about Ace. That's my local hardware and they've always been really good about ordering stuff in when we've been working on our house.

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