Ok to use a hog panel for a roost?


11 Years
Apr 15, 2008
We are getting ready to install our nest boxes,whihc are milk crates...here is the idea. We have the frame from an old rabbit hutch (envision no hutch, just the legs and "platform" I want to mount a hog panel flat on the top of it, making a nice platform area to wire teh nest boxes to. This would also allow room for the birds to perch in the panel as well. Now, the panels are 4 foot wide, so there will be several "rows" of squares available, and the metal is quite thick, so it shouldn't cut into their feet. Since they will havea few rows under them, they wont ahve to be balancing on the wire, but can actually sit on the panel with their tush...before I do this, just wanted to make sure it would be ok. I dont see how it oculd potentially harm their feet or anything, but I want to make sure. I am hoping it works because then we could just lift off the panel, boxes and all, and take it outside to hose off and disinfect as needed-easy peesy!
If the nest boxes are on top of the hog pannel, I suspect they will sleep in or on top of the nests. I don't think sleeping on wire is very comfy, but you could perhaps put some 2x4's on it or over it?
Do you have cold weather? If so the metal would be really cold for them to sleep on. Hog panels I have seen have pencil size wire and I think that would be too small for them. Maybe I don't understand!!
Yes, the wire is probably pencil thick- I hadn't thought about it getting cold, that is a good point. Is it better to put the boxes down low to discourage sleeping in them? They do all want to be high up at night when they sleep-I was thinking the nest boxes should be higher up too, but maybe not?
Normally the roosts are higher than the nest boxes, but not under them. That way they dont roost in the nests and get it dirty. And if you have the roosts over the nest boxes the poop will fall into or on the nests, which isnt so good. This is just my opinion, but I wouldnt think using panels weither it be hog, cattle or utility panels would be a good idea. Chickens like to roost on things a little larger, such as a 2x4 or dowl rods(sp?). I think the panels would be too small sort of speaking.

The way I have my set up right now(temp) is a wooden frame with tin on the front and back side. So my nest box is sorta on the floor right now(no other place to put it). I have the roost made out of 2x4 that is coming off one of the side walls. But when I start to build my new coop I will have the nest boxes outside, so I can gather eggs without having to go inside the coop.
Depending on how cold it gets where you are, roosting on metal might be dangerous for their feet. I would make sure the metal is covered with something wooden.
Is the wire going to lie right on top of the wood? How will you keep it clean? Seems like the wire would get really encrusted.

What about just using the platform with no wire at all? Then you could scrape it clean.
my coop also started with a rabbit coop! Our coop opened from the back and so we use those doors for egg collection. And for nestboxes we also used milk crates! Good luck with it all!

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