Help with run size please, due to sod

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by DUWBACC, Aug 18, 2016.

  1. DUWBACC

    DUWBACC Just Hatched

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    Well, my husband is dead set on putting sod down in the backyard. I informed him that no living creature in my charge would set foot out there for at least a year, but of course the coop and run are back there. My kids certainly won't be going out to play on the swing set amongst the neurotoxins...

    Knowing that I will be keeping my new babies confined to the coop and run after they are big enough, how large should I have the run built? There will be 4 Orpington (or similarly sized) hens. That is all our ordinance allows us to have. I want them to be happy! 10 x 12? Larger?
     
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2016
  2. rosemarythyme

    rosemarythyme Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The run should be as big as you feel comfortable with and have space for. 10x12 gives them 30 sq ft per bird which is easily more than the "minimum," but if you're planning to go in there and interact with them you might find it more comfortable for yourself as well if you go bigger. I have 4 pullets and a 10x20 run (though my coop is fully enclosed so that eats up a good chunk of space) plus a fenced veggie garden/side run. I went bigger than I had originally planned but now that the girls are growing I kind of wish I'd gone even bigger, though they seem happy with the amount of space so far.

    Good idea keeping them off the sod since I'm sure there's going to be all sorts of lovely fertilizers and stuff mixed in, plus they'd just rip out the grass anyhow.
     
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2016
  3. DUWBACC

    DUWBACC Just Hatched

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    Thank you for your reply. I will plan to go bigger then! I might only be able to roof part of the run in that case, but at least they would have a covered area outside for rainy days.
     
  4. TerryH

    TerryH Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My Coop
    Our run is 9x26 for our 8 chickens. It is completely covered and has worked out great for us. My advice is to go as big as you can. It seemed huge when we first finished it but the space fills up pretty quickly once you start adding things like the dust bath, extra roosts, waterer etc...
     
  5. flocking nuts

    flocking nuts Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Neurotoxin in sod?
     
  6. DUWBACC

    DUWBACC Just Hatched

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    Oh yes - they use so many different herbicides, pesticides and fertilizers that no grazing animal should consume the grass for at least a year (give the rain time to wash it away). I wish I could find a company that grew their grass for sod without all of that junk.
     
  7. rosemarythyme

    rosemarythyme Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My run is 6' tall but we left it open on top, mainly because my husband is taller than the fence and I didn't want to make him stoop. [​IMG] Also we placed it under a large weeping willow which I left mostly untrimmed, it provides both shade and some rain protection and a small amount of predator protection.

    Another thing to keep in mind with run sizing, especially if you don't want to roof over the whole thing: the reason we went with 10x20 is we figured if we needed extra shade or a little more predator deterrence we could cover the whole thing with two 10x10 tarps, which are a standard size and easy to add or remove as needed.
     
    1 person likes this.
  8. flocking nuts

    flocking nuts Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh I'm sorry. That's got to be very frustrating. Could you talk him into fencing his sod instead. My poor bf, I'm difficult sometimes...
     
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  9. DUWBACC

    DUWBACC Just Hatched

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    I love your username - it would suit me too. My DH certainly thinks I am something like flocking nuts.

    Nope, no go on the fence. I am determined to try and find a supplier that grows their sod without all of that junk. Herbicies break down fairly quickly, it's the insecticides that are the huge problem...for both the future chicken babies and for my human babies.
     

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