Run over a 'stream'?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by AmberKnits, Mar 26, 2016.

  1. AmberKnits

    AmberKnits Chillin' With My Peeps

    311
    94
    111
    Apr 28, 2015
    Upstate NY
    I would like to expand my run this spring, but I'm running into a few issues. I do not have space on two sides of the coop, and I'd rather not take up the yard my kids play in. I'm not moving the coop, it's got electricity and I don't really want it any farther from the house because of water in the winter.

    There is one side of the coop, there is a small 'stream' for lack of a better term. It's more like a muddy drainage ditch, water only runs through when it rains very hard. The land then goes up a bit of a hill into the woods. If I went on this direction, I could expand the run quite a bit.

    Is this possible? I could build the chickens a little bridge or two, that's not an issue.


    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  2. OrganicFarmWife

    OrganicFarmWife Chillin' With My Peeps

    4,873
    328
    238
    Oct 21, 2015
    No where Nebraska
    I think that would be fine. Yes you would need a bridge, but it is a run, not the coop. I think it would look really cool to watch your chickens crossing the bridge. But it looks very wild back there so an extra strong run.
     
  3. AmberKnits

    AmberKnits Chillin' With My Peeps

    311
    94
    111
    Apr 28, 2015
    Upstate NY
    Thank you for responding. Just a few days ago I built the small bridge you see in the photo, our compost area is up the hill there.


    It is a bit wild back there, we get deer in that area frequently, we have a lot of apple trees. But, it's kind of like the edge of the regular yard, the yard ends at the stream. I'd have to have a bit of fencing down into the stream, to keep critters from sneaking under. Would a hardware cloth apron be appropriate for the outside of the fencing? Digging down into the ground may not be possible due to the number of trees. The chickens use that area frequently when they are out free ranging, the especially like it in the summer time. I also wonder if it would be an issue if there was an apple tree in the run? We don't eat or use the apples, they aren't very good. Or should I be sure to build away from any apple trees?

    There is another shed, though its a ways from the house and it would be such a hassle hauling water out there in the winter, it's a cleared area, so there isn't as much shade, and there is no electricity in that area of the property.
     
  4. OrganicFarmWife

    OrganicFarmWife Chillin' With My Peeps

    4,873
    328
    238
    Oct 21, 2015
    No where Nebraska
    Mine love the orchard. They eat the fallen fruit and chase the insects that the fruit brings. Yes I was thinking at least hardware cloth. Mostly thinking of the smaller predators around that could hide in the brush.
     
  5. AmberKnits

    AmberKnits Chillin' With My Peeps

    311
    94
    111
    Apr 28, 2015
    Upstate NY

    Coyotes are my main predator concern, I feel like the coop is secure enough to keep them out at night. I've seen foxes in the area, a raccoon. Our dog tends to keep a lot of the wild life away - I've never seen a squirrel or chipmunk or rabbit in the yard.

    Other than digging down, do you have any good suggestions?
     
  6. OrganicFarmWife

    OrganicFarmWife Chillin' With My Peeps

    4,873
    328
    238
    Oct 21, 2015
    No where Nebraska
    Instead of burying fencing down you can lay fencing out. Meaning lay a foot or so of wire on the ground along the run. This prevents animals from being able to dig under the run.
     
  7. AmberKnits

    AmberKnits Chillin' With My Peeps

    311
    94
    111
    Apr 28, 2015
    Upstate NY
    That's exactly what I was thinking. It seems doable given the landscape up there, especially since I will probably be building the fence myself.
     
  8. OrganicFarmWife

    OrganicFarmWife Chillin' With My Peeps

    4,873
    328
    238
    Oct 21, 2015
    No where Nebraska
    I have seen on here others that have done it and are happy with it. It allows the birds access to the soil but nothing can get them. How tall are you going to make the run or would you cover it?
     
  9. AmberKnits

    AmberKnits Chillin' With My Peeps

    311
    94
    111
    Apr 28, 2015
    Upstate NY
    I would probably use the same 6 ft high fencing I used for the rest of the run last year. It's a coated wire livestock fence. I could do hardware cloth as an apron around the fencing. I don't currently have a top over the run, and I think the area I'm hoping to fence in would be rather large for a top, I'm just guessing....but the area would be roughly 30x40 feet.
     
  10. OrganicFarmWife

    OrganicFarmWife Chillin' With My Peeps

    4,873
    328
    238
    Oct 21, 2015
    No where Nebraska
    I have heard of a rather clever idea of someone stringing colored 30+ test fishing line across a large space. It prevents hawks and other birds of prey from making that dive to kill.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by