Run size for free range?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Daycare Mom, Apr 16, 2008.

  1. Daycare Mom

    Daycare Mom Chickens, Cuddly and Delicious

    Apr 9, 2008
    Conklin, Michigan
    I have been reading posts for a while, but this is my first post. We finished our coop and are starting on the run. I have read that you need to have 10 sq ft of run per chicken. My thought was we really don't need that much as our chickens will be free range, we have 3 acres for them to run around on. We will only use the run when we have to put them in early or when we are gone for a weekend. Just wondering if the run can be smaller if they aren't in it all day everyday.
    Any thoughts?

    NYREDS Crowing

    Jan 14, 2008
  3. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    Yep, the run can be smaller if they are out. Do think about the times of years they may not be out though, and adjust accordingly. Someone in florida where the birds are out and about 365 days a year won't need the same set up as someone in the depths of canada where there may be piles of snow for 2-3 months of the year and the birds aren't "out" free ranging.
  4. Chirpy

    Chirpy Balderdash

    May 24, 2007
    There is no need for that large of run if your chickens are out free ranging every day.

    However, you don't want such a small run that when they are locked up (for a weekend) they stress out and hen peck each other.
  5. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    Also remember that a significant number of people start out intending to free-range, but then discover they have too much of a predator problem. Do you want to have to rebuild your run larger if that happens?

    Just a thought,

  6. Daycare Mom

    Daycare Mom Chickens, Cuddly and Delicious

    Apr 9, 2008
    Conklin, Michigan
    Great, thanks for the info. I am sure that my hubby will be happy that it doesn't have to be huge.

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