I am building my first chicken run!

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by OkChickens, Dec 1, 2010.

  1. OkChickens

    OkChickens Orpingtons Are Us

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    Dec 1, 2010
    Owasso, Oklahoma
    I have plans to build a run for my 52 and growing Chickens. Let me know what you think and other ideas.

    1. One of my plans to make this out PVC pipe and sturdy farm netting about 12 feet wide by about 25 feet long. My plan includes arcing the PVC and secure the netting to the PVC. Very inexpensive compared to others.

    2. My second idea is to make the same size with chicken wire and 2x4's. It is like a shed with chicken wire sides and chicken wire top. More expensive but long lasting.
     
  2. Knock Kneed Hen

    Knock Kneed Hen California Dream'in Chickens

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    I'd go with the wood. Like you pointed out, it lasts longer plus it's stronger. I would not use chicken wire though. Use a heavier wire. I used chain link fence that I got from Habitat for Humanity dirt cheap, then put hardware cloth on the bottom third of it. It's super strong and predator proof.
     
  3. OkChickens

    OkChickens Orpingtons Are Us

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    My only problem with the wood and wire is the cost. Would the heavy gauge 2x4 wire work for like 2 ft of the ground then the rest chicken wire? I'm going to make it about 6 or 7 feet tall so I can walk in it (collect stray eggs).
     
  4. Chicken.Lytle

    Chicken.Lytle Chillin' With My Peeps

    If your objective is to corral the birds then chicken wire will work.

    If you want to keep predators out you will need serious wire such as 2x4 welded wire farm fence. Chicken wire does not even slow down a predator.
     
  5. OkChickens

    OkChickens Orpingtons Are Us

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    What do you think about 4' chain link fence for the bottom part. Would that work? I have a very large coop 25' x 37' I am looking to get more chickens. This is why a want to add a run! Other ideas?
     
  6. TigerLilly

    TigerLilly I failed Chicken Math

    Jul 18, 2010
    Central Florida
    If, by 'farm netting' you mean something made of fabric, I would consider what type of predators are native to your area first. Are you using this netting on the sides or just the top?
    Personally, although I know it's more expensive, but it's also more secure for the animals, I'd use hardware cloth. I find I can sleep better knowing that my critters are VERY safe at night.

    Wow...in the time it took me to type that (while being distracted by brownies & the tv), lots of people have already answered! When I started, no one had...now I have to read before I finish.

    Ok, chain link will not keep racoons from reaching in to grab your chickens, but I use old dog kennels with hardware cloth around the bottom.
     
  7. thebirdguy

    thebirdguy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    ditto to above responses... hardware cloth 1/2 inch or small is a must along the bottom couple of feet if you have any coons or cats around.. Years ago we lost a bunch of quail from a cat reaching through the chicken wire and pulling their heads through.. Wasn't pretty..

    As far as the wood goes... check with habitat for humanity for useable lumber or watch for construction sites.. If you get permission to dumpster dive, you'd be amazed at how much lumber is tossed by the construction crews.. My wife salvaged enough lumber to build an entire playhouse for the kids a few years ago.. the only thing we had to buy was shingles..

    Good luck and have fun!
     
  8. Chicken.Lytle

    Chicken.Lytle Chillin' With My Peeps

    I have a raised coop. The bottom half is plywood and the top half is 2x4 welded wire. It has a people door and a pop door.

    The coop is located in an 18 x 32 pen that is fenced with 4x4 posts and 2x4 welded wire with two 2x4 wood rails for stability. This is just a pasture fence, so there is no cover.

    The pen opens to a 1/3 acre run that is fenced with chicken wire held up by flimsy stakes. The birds occupy the run & pen during the day and they sleep in the coop at night.

    Raccoons and opossums completely ignore the fence and just climb over. If they decide to spend the night in the tender trap, they will not spend another on my property.

    I have thought about turning the pen into an enclosure with all the trimmings -- putting hardware cloth around the base, building a frame, and wiring over the frame. This exceeds my skills and budget so for now I patrol the property and deal with threats.
     
  9. OkChickens

    OkChickens Orpingtons Are Us

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    Owasso, Oklahoma
    This is mainly for the chickens use during the day, at night they will be I'm there coop. I have found some chain link from a friend. Would chain link and a electric fence work or do I still need 2x4 wire? I have a small budget that's the problem.
     
  10. TigerLilly

    TigerLilly I failed Chicken Math

    Jul 18, 2010
    Central Florida
    From what I can tell, this is going to depend (still) on what type of predators you have in the area you live. During the day, when I'm hom, my chickens free range on 2 acres that is fenced with 2 x 4 & 4 x 6 welded wire. At night they are in their coop. As long as you have a secure coop & are around during the times they are out of it, that kind of changes things.
     

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