Is a 3 foot high run high enough?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by shabbyshic, Apr 26, 2011.

  1. shabbyshic

    shabbyshic In the Brooder

    Mar 28, 2011
    Hi there! so looking for some advice from those with more experience.

    I have 6 chicks who will be moving outside in the next month or so. We are trying to put together a coop and run as frugally as possible. We have come across a metal structure that we could use as our permanent run. It is 10 feet wide, 12 feet long, but only 3 feet high. It would have chicken wire or hardware cloth around it to be predator safe, and it would be attached to the coop.

    This would be our chickens only run, we can't free range here due to predators... so I need to know if chickens can be in a run that is so low? Do they need to be able to fly/flutter around? Do they need height to be healthy happy chickens?

    Thanks! The structure is at the end of a neighbours driveway.. so i need to act fast to pick it up if it will work - so any advice would be great.

  2. Is this run going to be covered?

  3. latebloomer

    latebloomer Songster

    Feb 10, 2011
    green mountain state
    how will you access the chicks if they're in the run and need your help?
  4. scratch'n'peck

    scratch'n'peck Crowing

    Oct 31, 2008
    West Michigan
    My Coop
    3 ft high should be fine for the chickens. However there may be a few things you want to consider: it would be tough for you to get your chickens out of the run, especially if they hide in the corner, also it would be difficult to clean the run if you want to. You may not need to clean the run much if the area has good drainage and you keep the chicken count around 6.

  5. shabbyshic

    shabbyshic In the Brooder

    Mar 28, 2011
    Yes it will be covered. And the chickens will still have access to the coop at all times. The birds will be 2 months old at least when they move out of our basement, so they won't be teeny tiny. However, my concerns were what to do if I have to catch them in the coop, and if I need to clean it out, or add new ground material to the area.

    Would it just be a pain in the neck from your experience? Do you find that you need to access the run often? We do live in a climate that gets lots of snow. Often in access of 3 feet.. so I just had the thought I would really have to protect the whole run in the winter so that it didn't fill up with too much snow...

    My gut feeling is that it might not be the best idea.. yet the price is right! Free!
  6. Noymira

    Noymira Songster

    Mar 9, 2011
    Chittenden County, VT
    Can you raise that structure with supports to make it 4 or 5 feet high? That would let you get in their more easily and still use the structure. I might try that.
  7. welasharon

    welasharon Songster

    Jun 28, 2010
    North Florida
    I would get it and make it taller. I have my seramas in a four foot high enclosure and it is a pita!

  8. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    Quote:How are you going to get inside it to a) clean, b) retrieve mislaid eggs, and/or c) retrieve sick or injured chickens?

    If there is some way for you to EASILY get in there, without crawling on hands and knees, I'd say go for it.

    If not, you really ought to modify it so you can. Seriously.

    Good luck, have fun,

  9. Elite Silkies

    Elite Silkies Crowing

    Jun 17, 2009
    My Coop
    The only way I would make a fun 3' tall is if the top was hinged and I could open it that way.

  10. elmo

    elmo Songster

    May 23, 2009
    And if you want it to provide security, spring for the welded wire instead of the chicken wire.

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