Run Covering?


May 7, 2016
I believe I may have fallen in the trap of not researching enough about the actual construction of the coop/run itself.

We have roofed over the coop (obviously), but skipped the run and just covered the top in hardware cloth. Not that this is a bad thing, it allows for more light to come in, etc.

Our main worry is the snow that will pile up on top. We can obviously rake it off, but then again, it's already more trouble then it's worth.

Does anyone else have an open top to their run?

What are your solutions to keeping snow from piling up if so?

--Thanks for any help you can provide.
My run is made from two bolt-together dog kennels, which consist of 10' long x 6' high chain-link panels and I found out the hard way that chickens can vault even this, unless you clip their wings. So I made a ceiling out of stretched 2" x 4" welded wire.fencing. Over the 10' x 10' section that the coop is in I layed an aluminized tarp over it for shade (silver side up), rain protection and I even angled it so that rain would flow off into two 5 gallon buckets for a free supply of water.

Since you are worried about snow buildup I would obviously skip the tarp, at least in the winter, but I would think the 2" x 4" WW fencing is open enough to give you a good 'snow resistant' lid for your run. Just how heavy are your snowfalls?
In Connecticut, it varies. Sometimes light, sometimes really heavy. Sometimes an inch, sometimes 2 feet. Connecticut weather is unpredictable; it starts raining in full sunlight and stops 5 minutes later only to be emptied of all it's clouds. It's better to be on the safer side and say it's heavier though.
I'm in Maryland and or snowfall varies as well. A light dusting or a blizzard, you never know what you'll get. I arched called panels over my 10x10 run and covered that with 2x4 welded wire. This was to increase height for my turkeys but it also works better for runoff compared to the sloped tarp had before. I bought a heavy tarp to share the run from the brutal heat a week or so ago, and I've found the rain flows of easy and I anticipate snow will too. I am going to figure out a method for easy opening and closing so I can just close it quickly during storms or heat waves but otherwise leave the run uncovered.


One of these days I'll finish painting it!
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