Questions on new run...

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Garden Gal, Apr 12, 2009.

  1. Garden Gal

    Garden Gal Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We have just about finished our coop and are getting ready for the run. It will be large, and currently there are some trees within the area. More trees could be removed (some small ones will be, but I'm hoping to leave some of the larger ones.) I've seen some beautiful examples and great ideas for runs which of course has only led me to more questions... [​IMG]

    My initial thought was to cover the run - even though it will be pretty big - to control hawks, etc... However, I also saw the photos of the cd disks stretched across the top instead of a netting, and want to know if that is really successful in discouraging prey birds. (I had also thought of running wire in a zig-zag pattern across the top of the run; I do this with fishing line across my koi pond and it prevents ospreys from snagging the koi.) I'm fine with mounting mirrors on the roof of the coop as well.

    IF I end up covering it completely: I've seen runs from 3' tall up to 6' or so. How often will the run need attention such as cleaning, etc? I don't mind bending over somewhat but sure don't want to have to crawl on my hands and knees! LOL!

    Our coop is slightly raised due to the grade of the land, and we had been planning on putting plastic down (moisture prevention) on the soil, securing it with sod pins, then putting up lattice or something to prevent the chickens from getting under the coop. Am I wiser to leave it open and allow them to get up under the coop for shade or security?

    Since the inside of our coop will be separated into two different "rooms" (I'm thinking eggies on one side, meaties on the other?), I'm assuming the run should also be divided, correct?

    I'll probably think of more questions, but these will get me moving. Many thanks!
     
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2009
  2. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Remember that string etc zigzagged across the top will protect *only* against birds of prey (to some extent), it does nothing versus raccoons and other climbing predators. I'm not at all trying to talk you out of an unroofed large area, just want to make sure you are clear on the tradeoffs.

    IF I end up covering it completely: I've seen runs from 3' tall up to 6' or so. How often will the run need attention such as cleaning, etc? I don't mind bending over somewhat but sure don't want to have to crawl on my hands and knees! LOL!

    I'd suggest making the whole thing big enough to stand in. The money saved, in a substantial sized run, by making it 4' instead of 6' is trivial compared to the cost of a chiropractor [​IMG] Seriously, it is really worth being able to stand basically upright. Extra points if it's high enough you don't constantly whop your head on the rafters [​IMG]

    Our coop is slightly raised due to the grade of the land, and we had been planning on putting plastic down (moisture prevention) on the soil, securing it with sod pins, then putting up lattice or something to prevent the chickens from getting under the coop. Am I wiser to leave it open and allow them to get up under the coop for shade or security?

    If it's a small enough coop, raised enough, that you will be able to conveniently get under there to clean, retrieve objects, and catch chickens, I'd say go for it, let them have the underneath as a covered porch. This is especially useful in hot or rainy climates. However if they will be able to go back where you cannot access without commando-crawling through mud and poo, well, *I* wouldn't do it [​IMG] You could always give them access to part (just the part you can reach) and block the rest off, as long as you block it off in a strong and digproof way.

    Since the inside of our coop will be separated into two different "rooms" (I'm thinking eggies on one side, meaties on the other?), I'm assuming the run should also be divided, correct?

    Yes; and if the meaties are CornishX they will not need/use anything like as much run space per chicken as layers.

    Good luck, have fun

    Pat​
     
  3. LynneP

    LynneP Chillin' With My Peeps

  4. Garden Gal

    Garden Gal Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 11, 2009
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    Thanks guys!
     

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