keeping covered run dry.

DickMidnight

Songster
Oct 23, 2021
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ive got a 16x8 run that’s fully covered by a corrugated polycarbonate roof.

there’s ample overhang on the front and a big slope to the back to get rain/snow to run off. there’s 6” or so of overhang on the sides as well.

today was the first big rainstorm since we’ve had the coop/run constructed and the ground is a MESS. the run is hard packed dirt that i covered in dead leaves/some wood chips and everything was soaked when i got home from work.

their coop is bone dry, so i’m happy about that. and the coop is elevated so there’s a large corner of the run that’s kept dry and that’s where they huddled all day when they weren’t eating.

i dumped an extra bag of pine shavings in the run to keep them up off the wet floor a little better, so i know that’ll help.

any other tips and tricks?

thanks
 

azygous

Enabler
11 Years
Dec 11, 2009
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You didn't mention whether the wetness is from runoff or wind blown rain from the sides.

There are indeed solutions to both. Channeling runoff away from the run is a must. Keep in mind runoff from the roof shedding water. (Are you in a winter snow zone?) A rain gutter may be necessary to direct runoff shed from the roof well away from the sides of the run.

If wind blown moisture is the issue, winter panels on the windward side or even all the way around the sides may be necessary. I recently put a new corrugated roof on my run, and I repurposed the old panels as siding around my run in winter.
 

DickMidnight

Songster
Oct 23, 2021
366
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173
You didn't mention whether the wetness is from runoff or wind blown rain from the sides.

There are indeed solutions to both. Channeling runoff away from the run is a must. Keep in mind runoff from the roof shedding water. (Are you in a winter snow zone?) A rain gutter may be necessary to direct runoff shed from the roof well away from the sides of the run.

If wind blown moisture is the issue, winter panels on the windward side or even all the way around the sides may be necessary. I recently put a new corrugated roof on my run, and I repurposed the old panels as siding around my run in winter.
good points

i should note that this much rain is definitely the exception and not the norm. it really came down today.

we’re attaching a gutter to the back of the coop to feed a rain barrel, so that should help quite a bit. i know that the runoff splashing on the ground behind the run made a lot of mud.

the rest was probably blown in from the heavy winds. for the winter, i’m planning on putting polycarbonate sheeting 4ft up the run walls to block wind and snow from getting in.
 

Boise-girls

Songster
May 26, 2021
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Boise, Idaho
I just used shower curtains on the sides of the run to protect it from wind (and wind-blown rain). Left openings for ventilation. That has worked well so far, but we don't get extreme amounts of wind or rain.

I'm still working on the overhead bit. It's amazing how dripping water finds a way around the edges! Think I've got it figured out using an over-sized tarp and boards underneath to direct flow. Won't know for sure till the next storm!
 

Allsfairinloveandbugs

Crowing
Premium Feather Member
Feb 10, 2020
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Far north texas
Adding the following to good advice already given by others. My property slopes gently downhill until it reaches a spring-fed creek in the back. I dont like to recall how many times i fought the flooding rainstorms, & the floods won. Heavy rain left the chickens slopping around in a soggy mess that never dried. Yes their run was covered, but the water ran through underneath.

My chicken's runs are made of 6ft high chainlink panels, My solution was ultimately to raise the height of the run floor a few inches, rather than try to divert rushing floodwaters around. I used dirt, woodchips, dead leaves, composted chicken manure & i dont remember what all to eventually raise the floor.

I had to shovel and wheelbarrow muck out in the past to get the run dry and clean again. If your run is not too muddy and mucky, Sweet PDZ (zeolite) is very effective. Cheapest when purchased in 40 lb bags. Sprinkle zeolite over the muck, & you will literally see it absorb moisture before your eyes.
 

DickMidnight

Songster
Oct 23, 2021
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update:

went out this morning to check on the run. in almost all of the run, the leaves, wood chips, and new pine shavings did their job and absorbed all of the moisture and are sitting well above the dirt floor.

ive got a plastic deck box that holds food, extra bedding, etc that i left against the back wall of the run. the water coming off the roof was splashing off of the box and making a muddy mess

i threw a wheelbarrow full of dry dirt on that spot and leveled it out. until the gutter is on, i moved the box a few feet away from the run.

the coop was bone dry, which has me feeling good because we got a TON of rain.

@Allsfairinloveandbugs ill pick up some zeolite this weekend and throw it in the run and then take everything around. thanks.
 

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