It's finally finished!


6 Years
Feb 16, 2013
Columbia, Virginia
After three months of work, I finally finished the coop with run attached! I wanted to make sure I predator proofed it as best as possible, so I hope I did it right!

What I had to work with (this pic was taken when we were house hunting...and this is the house we ended up buying. We moved in on January 19th 2013):

I started by fixing up the coop. Had to pull the bedding out, replace some rotten boards, and fix the nesting box doors...among a few other odds and ends like replacing the roost (which was just a long tree branch balanced on nesting boxes) and installing locks on all the doors.

Next came the run. I knew that it had to be secure so no predators could get to my babies. I decided to use a dog kennel that was given to us by a friend. It had 4 chain link sides that were ten feet long by four feet high. I positioned the pieces around the front of the coop so that when I pulled the rope to the run door, the chicks can walk down the ramp into a nice area free of threats. I dug a trench around the circumference and secured hardware cloth. The coop is raised and decided to keep the area under the coop as a place for the chicks to go for shelter against the sun, so I buried hardware cloth under there as well, a piece on each side. Then I used chicken wire to close up each end.

Next came the top. Have to keep those hawks and owls away! I used bamboo cut down from my property, and weaved it in a checkerboard pattern across the top so it would add stability to the chicken wire. Then I cut, placed, and secured the chicken wire over the entire top of the run.

I realized that those chain link squares are too big to be secure. Not only that, but where each piece of chain link wall meets, that gap is too big as well. So I covered the entire thing in chicken wire. Gotta love zip ties!!! I also made sure the trenches were filled in well, and added an inch or so of soil around the circumference just to be safe. I also weaved polywire along the sides as added security to make sure nothing could pull on the chicken wire and get in through the chain links.

My chicks are now moved in!

So...what do you think? Do you think it's secure enough from predators? Any feedback is appreciated!!


6 Years
Mar 11, 2013
I hope it turns out to BE a fortress! I am so scared that one day I'll go out to the chicks and I'll see a bunch of blood and body parts! That would haunt me for life!

Haha. I'm telling you, my chickies went to their coop for the first time yesterday and that is exactly the nightmare I had last night! Luckily I can see the coop from my bedroom and was so relieved that all looked well! I think I need therapy!


8 Years
Jun 29, 2011
The Peak District, UK
Wow, I thought it looked pretty secure and THEN you wrapped the whole lot in chicken wire lol. Can you still see them? I shouldn't think you have to worry about that nightmare; a predator will take one look and go off to find an easier morsel! Great job!

Is that your new house in the first photo, with the coop built against it?
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