1. generalwmb

    generalwmb Hatching

    Jan 30, 2011
    Hi. First post, I'll try not to sound to ignorant! My wife and I want to get a couple of chickens and we're looking at designs for coups and runs. There are very beautiful designs here and I think it's great they are free. As a kid on Grandpas farm the chickens were never boxed in. They had there coup and a fenced in area, but there wasn't a roof over top of the run. All the designs here have roofs over the runs, is it necessary? I know they can't fly, but do they jump hi? If I do a 3 ft. fenced run will they, pardon the pun, "fly the coup"? Thanks for any help!
  2. NonnasBabies

    NonnasBabies Muddy Acre Farms Premium Member

    Sep 20, 2009
    On the Farm!
    Quote:Oh yes!! You would need it alot higher than that!! My runs not covered with a roof just with chicken wire!!

    BTW [​IMG]
  3. M To The Maxx

    M To The Maxx Baseball+Girls=Life

    Jul 24, 2009
    A roof would be needed for many reasons. For shelter, predator protecton, and for them to fly out. You would need to build higher than 3 ft. For our runs we us lattice wood.
  4. perchie.girl

    perchie.girl Desert Dweller Premium Member

    Quote:Surprisingly many chickens do fly and quite well. They go straight up and forward a few feet before coming back to the ground. I kept mine like your grandpa kept his and it worked quite well for about a year and a half. Though they easily went over my four foot yard fence. Then we had some big fires here that drove all the preditors out to the area where I lived. I lost thirty chickens in thirty days my last little red hen was taken by a coyote not thirty feet from me while I was screaming and jumping and waiving my hands. [​IMG]

    I m rebuilding now after four years off and the run is definately getting a "lid" [​IMG]

    I am buying that woven stuff that looks like fishnet but will have walls of either dog kennel panels or regular fence construction. No matter how I build it I want to be able to walk upright inside for "maintenence". If you are in the city you still have to think about hawks and the neighbors cat.
  5. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    By no means do all BYCers have a 'top' on the run (neither solid nor wire/netting)... although a lot do, because there are a whole lot of pet or hobby oriented people here who really REALLY do not want to lose birds if at all avoidable. Whereas chances are good your grandfather's attitude was more "well, as long as most of them survive most of the time...".

    Without a top on your run, birds can leave if they want to (will they want to? very hard to predict, but with a non-huge run that goes to dirt and just a 3' fence I think most chickens would be at least sorely tempted) and hawks can eat yer birds whenever they want to.

    It is really pretty easy (in non-snowy climates or the non-snowy part of the year, anyhow) to stretch deer netting or bird netting over the run, and that will pretty much prevent hens flying out or hawks getting in (much).

    But, the bigger problem with a 3' fence is that in most cases it will leave your birds very vulnerable to dogs, which are arguably the worst daytime predator (because a hawk will just get one bird at a time, whereas a loose dog or two can kill your entire flock in minutes). THerefore unless this coop will be in a totally COMPLETELY dogproof-fenced backyard and there is ZERO chance the gate might ever get left open at the wrong time, I would really suggest a more serious fence. Although honestly even a strong 4' fence can be climbed or jumped by some dogs; higher is better, depending on what you percieve as the likelihood of loose/stray dogs around.

    Good luck, have fun,

  6. generalwmb

    generalwmb Hatching

    Jan 30, 2011
    Thanks everyone! That helps me get my game plan together!
  7. jomoncon

    jomoncon Songster

    Sep 24, 2010
    New Orleans, LA
    And if you live in an urban area, don't think you have to worry about predictors, cause you do. In addition to dogs, you can also gets hawks, raccoons & possums. I knew we had hawks, I've even seen some eying my little ladies, but a neighbor who also has chickens had to chase a raccoon away from his.
  8. abChicken

    abChicken Songster

    Mar 10, 2008
    Gaston County N.C.
    [​IMG] good advise so far [​IMG]

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