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I need ideas about how to organize my area

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by awsomechickdude, Nov 4, 2008.

  1. awsomechickdude

    awsomechickdude Hatching

    Nov 3, 2008
    I have a space that is about 10ft by 30ft. I was wondering how much space I needed for a house. I was also wondering how far chickens will dig to get out. how tall should the fence be. should there be wire on top. Is it possible to clip a chickens wings, and if it is, would i need wire on top.
  2. TaLani

    TaLani ~ Gemini Chick ~

    Oct 2, 2008
    Bryson City, NC
    The size of the house/coop would depend on how many chickens you'll be housing. The chickens really won't dig much, other than to take dust baths possibly close to the fence of the run. The main thing you may need to worry about is predators digging in. The fence of the run should be no shorter than 6ft high since a lot of hens can fly pretty easily to 6ft (trust me I know from personal experience [​IMG]). The best way to avoid the hens flying & keep hawks out is to put netting over the top, but it's costly [​IMG]. If you do use netting you will not need to clip their wings though.

    It is possible to clip the hen's wings, but only clip one wing so it'll make it really hard for her to balance while flying. Look at the bottom right of the forum's main page where you can search topics, type in wing clipping & the first topic that is listed is what you need to read - it has great directions & pics. [​IMG]
  3. BayCityBabe

    BayCityBabe Songster

    May 1, 2008
    I would use a third (or less) of that space for the coop. Make as big a run as you can. I used landscape timbers to create a 6-7ft. tall run. I use deer net for the top - to keep the birds in. I realize that it's not much of a deterent to racoons & such. It has kept the hawks out, though.

  4. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    How many chickens do you want to size the house for?

    Chickens digging to get out (or more accurately, digging a dustbath hole that just happens to be so close to the fence that they can pop under it) isn't so much of a problem as predators digging to get IN. Anything that keeps out predators will most certainly keep the chickens in. Recommend either trenching in something impervious (heavy gauge wire mesh, aluminum flashing, big square pavers set on edge) or running an 'apron' out a couple feet from the fence (heavy gauge wire mesh set flat on ground with pavers or big rocks on it, or other similar arrangements).

    You will kick yourself if you make a large run too short for you to walk around comfortably in; thus I would suggest 6' for height. A predator-safe top (a real roof, or heavy gauge 2x4 wire mesh supported by strong rafters) is the best thing but obviously also costs a bit more than weeblier solutions. Netting (deer net, trellis netting, bir netting, aviary netting) hung over the run, supported by a 'tent pole' or rafters, will keep chickens in and hawks out, but will NOT deter raccoons etc and will probably collapse in the first good snowfall or icestorm. Some people just run twine, with or without CDs hanging on it, crisscrossed all over atop the run for similar purposes.

    Clipping wings varies in how effective it is in keeping chickens on the right side of a fence, and even if you get it so it's basically 100% effective, it does nothing for protection against predators which is probably the bigger issue. Even in cities there are LOTS of things that want to eat chickens -- hawks, raccoons, stray dogs, coyotes, all sorts of things.

    Good luck, have fun,

  5. awsomechickdude

    awsomechickdude Hatching

    Nov 3, 2008
    I was planning on having about 10 chickens. would this be too much for this space. I was wondering about the coop design. should I just have a little shed with a door for me, a door for the chickens, and one wall covered with boxes?
  6. Um, my chickens dig a lot! You have wonderful space allotted- I have a coop in a barn for 12 birds (9'x11') and a roofed enclosed run that is 18x8x8, shown in the link below. Take a look if you think it might help.[​IMG]
  7. AtRendeAcres

    AtRendeAcres Songster

    May 23, 2007
    Clarion County
    Top of the page go to coop design (you will get lots of ideas)

    for large fowl you want 4 square feet inside
    Bantams you want 2 square feet inside

    Give them as much space out as you can!
    If you are like most people your 10 will soon become 20 so build bigger than you need!


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