1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

Need advise on height of run

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by rainbowgardens, May 19, 2009.

  1. rainbowgardens

    rainbowgardens Chillin' With My Peeps

    303
    2
    131
    Nov 19, 2008
    Central Virginia
    I'll be starting construction on my run in a few weeks and need to figure out what I'm doing.
    I would like to build a lower run than most do in order to keep it low profile from the view from the house. Maybe about four feet tall and fully screened. My chickens are free-ranged most of the time. They would only be in there when we are gone and when there is a lot of hawk activity.
    Those of you who have lower runs... How is cleaning handled. Is it a big pain since you cant walk in? would you go taller if you had it to do over?
    I would love your thought on this matter. I don't want to be stuck with something that doesn't work for me.
     
  2. Slywoody

    Slywoody Chillin' With My Peeps

    714
    4
    141
    Mar 18, 2009
    MINN.
    I think a walk-in is by far the best way to go. I even have an extra wide door on mine so i can wheel in mulch and dump it so my girls can scratch through it. They love it. From there i haul it to my garden along with the poo for fertilizer. Works great for me.
     
  3. Ladyhawke1

    Ladyhawke1 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:For me maintenance is the most important thing. Being able to stand up to take care of the chickens whether it is repairs or cleaning will make all the difference in the world as to whether is a pleasure to do or a “chore” having chickens. [​IMG]
     
  4. rainbowgardens

    rainbowgardens Chillin' With My Peeps

    303
    2
    131
    Nov 19, 2008
    Central Virginia
    I guess I need to decide between ease of cleaning, and appearance.
    Another reason I'm wanting it short is because it'll be in front of the garden and I don't want it shading things too much. It wouldn't be as much of a problem if I didn't have it covered.
     
  5. ranchhand

    ranchhand Rest in Peace 1956-2011

    13,295
    18
    291
    Aug 25, 2008
    SC
    One of my runs is 5'. And I'm 5'6". I find that I delay scraping that run because it kills my back!
     
  6. Rafter 7 Paint Horses

    Rafter 7 Paint Horses Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 13, 2007
    East Texas
    Quote:For me maintenance is the most important thing. Being able to stand up to take care of the chickens whether it is repairs or cleaning will make all the difference in the world as to whether is a pleasure to do or a “chore” having chickens. [​IMG]

    I agee !!

    If you want to keep your run clean and not smelly, my advice would be to build it where you can walk into it. I have several 4 foot tall pens that are a total mess! When we built them, I was so proud of them. But after the chickens did their work to to the ground, when it rained, they became slippery and I didn't go in and clean so often, and then it bacame a real chore to scrunch down to clean out a 10 foot long 4 foot tall run. The tool handles were too long to really use them correctly, so I was straining my back even more.
    Although they are very functional, I would never build anything again that I couldn't either walk into or pick up and move to clean ground easily.
    And after the kids or grandkids get about 10 years old, they start to complain about having to be bent over to clean them out too. So unless you are very short...build taller.

    If you are worried about it shading your garden, my suggestion is to only cover a small portion with a solid cover and use wire for the rest of the top.

    Jean
     
  7. Wateredgarden11

    Wateredgarden11 Out Of The Brooder

    57
    0
    39
    Mar 25, 2009
    Sandusky, Ohio
    If you look at my thread today with some picsst today you will notice that since we live in a town I too wanted a low profile run. Once we built it at 3 feet we were miserable and are now in process of raising it another 3'. Believe me its not fun to crawl into a run to clean it or to catch a chick. Our backs were killing us. [​IMG] We are enclosing the top of our run with screen that you use on doors and windows. The upper last 2 feet. Perhaps that idea would not shade your plants in your garden. Good luck on building your coop and run ..lots of great advice here on BYC just wish we had followed some of it from the beginning. [​IMG]
     
  8. catnip

    catnip Chillin' With My Peeps

    104
    0
    129
    Mar 27, 2008
    Nebraska
    I started out with a 4' tall run. I'm only 5' 3" and it was a pain to work in even as short as I am. I now use a 6' tall dog kennel and I'm really happy with it.
     
  9. rainbowgardens

    rainbowgardens Chillin' With My Peeps

    303
    2
    131
    Nov 19, 2008
    Central Virginia
    Well, they say a wise man learns from the mistakes of others.
    So far, I have heard no positive reports on a short run. No ideas on how to make it do-able.
    I had better heed your warnings.

    Last year I didn't listen to everybody when they said to build a coop bigger than you ever would think you'd need. I didn't listen and now I'm having to build an addition to triple my space because I have little peeps in the garage waiting to join their big sisters.

    Thanks everyone!
     
  10. pbrian

    pbrian New Egg

    8
    0
    7
    Mar 9, 2009
    W Simsbury CT
    I'm thinking of building a 4' tall run but building the top of it so that it is on hinges so that when you wanted to get in to clean it, you just swing open the top. Has anyone tried this??
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by