Large Run, don't want to overcrowd it...

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by JadedPhoenix, Jan 20, 2014.

  1. JadedPhoenix

    JadedPhoenix Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We've just built a 22' by 40' run for my chickens. I only have six chickens right now (five hens and one roo) but will be getting more in April. Just to get some other's opinions, how many would each recommend to be the max to keep everyone happy.

    I have three small coops that accommodate about eight hens in each so each "mini-flock" will have their own roosts to go home to at night.
     
  2. averycatherwood

    averycatherwood Out Of The Brooder

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    When I was building my run, we followed the rule 10 sq feet per chicken in the run. You have a huge run! Are you planning on selling these eggs that you get or are they just for you and your family?
     
  3. MoonShadows

    MoonShadows The Jam Man

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    If your coops can accommodate 24 hens total, then your run of 880 square feet is plenty big enough. That will give each chicken over 36 square feet of space in the run. That's more than 3.5 times the recommended minimum run space.
     
  4. The Lazy L

    The Lazy L Chillin' With My Peeps

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    22' x 40' = 880 square feet / 10 = 88 chickens.
     
  5. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

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    With that much run space, the regular rules of thumb given on here don’t mean a lot. You might check out the link in my signature to see what some of my thoughts are on space requirements.

    A lot of how many you can handle will depend on how you manage them. One important thing about space requirement is “when is that space available to them?” I really love that big run but a large run is hard to make really predator-proof. You’ll probably find you need to lock them up securely in the coops at night for predator protection. You might take that into consideration and when you plan to let them out in the morning into consideration when determining how many you can handle.

    Good luck with it. It sounds like you are set up pretty well.
     
  6. JadedPhoenix

    JadedPhoenix Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 29, 2012
    Tyro-Lexington, NC
    When I was building my run, we followed the rule 10 sq feet per chicken in the run. You have a huge run! Are you planning on selling these eggs that you get or are they just for you and your family?

    I usually sell eggs to people that I know at work and to family. I LOVE having a lot of fresh eggs on hand and my co-workers love getting eggs that they know exactly how old they are since I put the date that they are laid on each egg. Brings in a little extra cash during the peak egg laying season. As for the size, I hate to see animals cramped up and the run was put up in a section of the land that was really awkward to mow since it was must a box shaped section off to the side. I convinced my hubby that if we fenced it in he wouldn't have to mow it anymore. :D

    One important thing about space requirement is “when is that space available to them?” I really love that big run but a large run is hard to make really predator-proof. You’ll probably find you need to lock them up securely in the coops at night for predator protection.

    The worst predator that I have around here right now is my own dog. He loves to kill chickens and he has nearly figured out how to get into the old run several times and even without getting in, he quickly learned that he could scare the chickens by jumping up on the trampoline and grabbing them through the top wires. If I can keep him out, it will be as 100% P.proof as possible.
     

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