New and need to make pen

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by PattyAnnie, Oct 27, 2016.

  1. PattyAnnie

    PattyAnnie Out Of The Brooder

    65
    5
    23
    Oct 25, 2016
    Starkville, MS
    Hello!

    Just signed up to BackYard Chickens. I know I have a lot to learn. I only have 2 Buff Orpingtons right now. The others got taken by predators.

    I am a city girl (Florida) transplant to Mississippi. It is nice to be able to have chickens and eggs.

    Does anyone have any suggestions on making a cheap pen? We have a coop, but have been letting them free range and a dog got my rooster a few days ago. He was a sweetie. I was thinking those metal stick in the ground things and chicken wire? I'm going to add more chicks soon so probably I will have at least 20.
    [​IMG]
     
  2. Blooie

    Blooie Team Spina Bifida Premium Member

    12,748
    5,716
    436
    Feb 25, 2014
    Northwestern Wyoming
    My Coop
    I have a hoop run that I just love. It was made on the cheap - a few steel fence posts and a couple of cattle panels arched between them, some chicken wire on the top to deter predators and hardware cloth going up about 2' and then folded out at the bottom and extended another foot or so outward, staked down with landscape fabric staples and we were good to go! It's withstood our wild, 60+ mph winds, snow loads (not that you have to worry about that!) it's tall enough to walk around in comfortably, easy to cover for sun shade and rain protection, and I think ours looks great. Yep ,bragging, but I've just been so happy with it. And the best part was that my hubby and I are older, both with some degree of disability, and we were able to build it ourselves in no-time flat!

    [​IMG]
    With snow on it....this was just a few days ago on October 12. <sigh> It's coming!

    [​IMG]
    The hardware cloth at the bottom and running up the side - you can also see the chicken wire we covered the whole thing with.


    [​IMG]
    The people door frame.

    [​IMG]
    Closeup of the door frame. The chickens were in a temporary pen next to the run while we completed it.


    [​IMG]
    The lattice is just for appearance, since we live on a corner lot in town and the coop/run is visible from the street on two sides.

    [​IMG]
    Just landscape fabric tossed over it for shade and rain protection. Of course, we don't get as much rain here as you do there - I lived in Mississippi for 2 years!

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Plenty roomy even with just 3 cattle panels. With only 2 birds, I wouldn't recommend using less than that - chicken math has a way of sneaking up on us eventually, but this setup is so easy to expand it's crazy!

    [​IMG]
    When we decided to expand it, we just took off the end piece, put in two more fence posts and arched one more panel, the put the end piece back up. Easy as pie!
     
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2016
    3 people like this.
  3. PattyAnnie

    PattyAnnie Out Of The Brooder

    65
    5
    23
    Oct 25, 2016
    Starkville, MS
    Thank you so much! The photos are great! I'm going to print those out to show my husband. It looks like something I could help with too. It will be so nice not to worry about them getting taken.

    I'm going to be adding Welsummer chicks and a few Easter eggers, and if they hatch BSS Ameraucanas. I like giving the eggs to friends and family and I'm hoping for some nice colors.

    Thanks again so much for all the photos. It is a such a huge help!

    Pat
     
  4. Blooie

    Blooie Team Spina Bifida Premium Member

    12,748
    5,716
    436
    Feb 25, 2014
    Northwestern Wyoming
    My Coop
    Oh, you are so very welcome! And I neglected to say [​IMG] Oh, and I also neglected to say that the chicken wire is to deter OVERHEAD predators like hawks, and those pesky squirrels and wild birds that can bring in mites, lice, and eat more of your chicken food than your chickens do - I didn't specify that and I should have, because in and of itself it's pretty useless against determined ground type critters. Gee, looks like I neglected more than I put in! [​IMG] Under my avatar is a link to "My Coop" which explains the whole coop/run build far better.


    Since you'll be looking at chicks, might I give you a couple of links that make chick raising so much simpler and more enjoyable for you and for the chicks, and will make integrating the new chicks with your existing flock a piece of cake?

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/956958/mama-heating-pad-in-the-brooder-picture-heavy-update

    It's a big thread, I know, (somehow it took on a life of it's own and more and more folks tried it!) but there's a video of my first batch of chicks being raised under it. Also on page 46 my good friend @Beekissed shared information and photos of the way she does it, which keeps chicks from getting caught up in the wires of the frame.

    And if you can stand a little information overload, this link explains why and how I raise chicks outdoors, instead of inside the house, using the heating pad "cave" and a wire pen right inside the run with the adults and I'm not the only one to find this far superior. I do this even when temps are in the teens and twenties.

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/yes-you-certainly-can-brood-chicks-outdoors
     
  5. sunflour

    sunflour Flock Master Premium Member Project Manager

    14,423
    4,762
    456
    Jan 10, 2013
    Macon,GA
    Hello and [​IMG] glad you have joined us.

    Blooie has given a great plan, I may also copy hers to give my hens a little more room to play.
     
  6. psychochickn

    psychochickn Just Hatched

    14
    2
    14
    Oct 5, 2016
    We used electrical conduit with the same concept as above. It has held up quite well and it is mobile.
     
  7. CuzChickens

    CuzChickens CountryChick

    5,514
    1,434
    306
    Apr 24, 2016
    Virginia
  8. PattyAnnie

    PattyAnnie Out Of The Brooder

    65
    5
    23
    Oct 25, 2016
    Starkville, MS
    Wow! I can't thank you enough Blooie!

    It is a bit overwhelming going through all the info on here, but you have helped me so much! I only have 2 hens in the coop, so I could do a setup like yours for the chicks inside the coop I think.

    I wonder how many baby chicks I could keep together and in what amount of space. I will be hopefully hatching chicks by the end of November and then also having baby chicks delivered about then. My incubator holds 40 chicks. I guess I could fill it up and see how many I get. I ordered a Hovabator so hopefully it will do a good job.

    I was thinking I would have to put chicks in the guest room again and my husband was not very happy about me doing that again.

    With newly hatched chicks and 2-3 day old chicks can you put them out right away in that kind of setup or should you give them a day or two in the house, especially the ones who have just come from the post office? I worry about putting such young chicks outside. It doesn't get that cold here though. It might snow once a year for 2 seconds, but
    by the time you get your camera it has melted.

    I better get started printing out pictures. I know what my hubby will be working this weekend[​IMG]
     
  9. PattyAnnie

    PattyAnnie Out Of The Brooder

    65
    5
    23
    Oct 25, 2016
    Starkville, MS
    Thank you much! Boy I know what I will be doing tonight. So much to look at and such great ideas!

    You guys are the best:)
     
  10. PattyAnnie

    PattyAnnie Out Of The Brooder

    65
    5
    23
    Oct 25, 2016
    Starkville, MS
    Thank you so much!
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by