Run cover idea advice

Ryooki

Chirping
May 27, 2020
43
25
61
Medford, Oregon
We’re still in the design phase of our coop / run, and I had planned on covering the run with hardware cloth to keep our aerial predators. However, my husband was dissatisfied with the look since it’s in our backyard, and came up with the idea of using horizontal slats of wood like an arbor on the other side of the house. That will look much better than the hardware cloth and will make it much easier for to prune any vines I grow over the run. I anticipate that it should keep hawks out as well. Will 2-3 inches between 2x2s should be adequate to prevent hawks from getting my chickens? The walls of the run will be 1/2 inch hardware cloth, except for the garage wall and the 6 foot fence wall, which will have hardware cloth extending into the ground and maybe an extra foot from the wall to the top of the run. Any other considerations I should be thinking about for the ceiling of the run?

Thanks!
 

RojoMarz

Songster
May 21, 2020
670
1,096
211
Southern CO...at 8600 ft
In would think 2" between, for the roof would work. If you used a 2x2 to measure/space between the screwed down 2x2 roof boards, it would be faster than measuring 3" each time. A pergola type roof won't provide coverage from rain or snow though. Do you need that or is an uncovered run ok?
 

neo71665

Crowing
Mar 22, 2020
1,984
4,293
306
Arkansas
It'll stop hawks but not much more. If ya worried about looks you can slat it like planned and then put the HC on the bottom of the slats. Just be a PITA to clean.
 

centrarchid

Crossing the Road
11 Years
Sep 19, 2009
26,386
17,760
856
Holts Summit, Missouri
Assuming all your chickens are adult standard size birds, then is will exclude raptors I would be concerned about. Smaller ground-hugging predators are not likely to climb up to go through the openings. I assume Martins and Fishers are not an issue in your area? The Martin in particular might be able to squeeze through openings. The pergola approach does provide some cool options with respect to vine-like plants that could provide additional shade and hide the run from view. I would make the structure from wood that will last several years as will take time for plantings to become established. Make certain it is re-enforced enough to take snow / freezing rain load.
 

Ryooki

Chirping
May 27, 2020
43
25
61
Medford, Oregon
Thanks for the advice all. :) We’re not concerned with snow load here at all. Rain is generally light, but there will be a covered run (converted understory of kids’ tree fort into a run / temp open air coop).

So really just hawks. Maybe a rare eagle. Pretty sure there aren’t Martens or Fishers where I am in the middle town. Sadly, we don’t even have squirrels in my section of town. It’s very bizarre since there are tons of oak trees, and it’s suburban feeling.
 
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Ryooki

Chirping
May 27, 2020
43
25
61
Medford, Oregon
I don’t know yet if sparrows will be an issue. I guess if it becomes an issue, I can put up hardware cloth later on the underside. We’ll probably have quite a bit left over black vinyl coated 1/2 cloth from building the run since I bought it in 100 ft rolls. I would probably only need a few spaces to be not covered in the underside so I can prune vines any away from the building structure.
 

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