Run Size in Free-Ranging vs Run confined chickens

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by LilBizzy, Aug 12, 2008.

  1. LilBizzy

    LilBizzy Chicken Storyteller

    May 20, 2008
    I've read here that the run space should be at least 10sq. ft per bird. But I think I'm a little confused. Ok, I KNOW I'm confused [​IMG] But back to chickens....
    What if the chickens are NOT free-ranging at all. Like for people who are on small lots, or surrounded by neighbors, or just unable to afford to fence in their whole yards? I've seen alot of pictures of the tractors.. Do some people leave their chickens in the tractors all day? What would the minimal space requirements be for chickens?
    And do most people let their chickens free-range for at least part of the day?
  2. Omran

    Omran Songster

    Jul 26, 2008
    Bagdad KY
    Quote:hello,me personally I have a big run,but my naiboughr has a lotof chickens and he told me he let them only for two hours free ranging every day,offcourse I am not the expert so please see what others will say too.
  3. Marlinchaser

    Marlinchaser Songster

    Oct 18, 2007
    There are chickens that live without ever seeing grass or anything but the small cage they are in.

    The more space the better, but give them what you can, and they will survive.
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2008
  4. sfcityfarmer

    sfcityfarmer In the Brooder

    Jul 8, 2008
    I live in a city so space is definitely an issue, my four chickens wander around the yard maybe one day a week when I'm around to let them out and watch them, otherwise they just have access to their coop and enclosed run. The run is 6 feet by 7 feet, I built the coop high enough off the ground that the space under the coop is part of their run, the coop covers half of the run (it's 3 1/2'x6'). The chickens seem plenty happy but they're my first batch, so what do I know [​IMG].
  5. pkeeler

    pkeeler Songster

    Jul 20, 2008
    When they reference a run they are talking about a fenced in area attached to the coop. The chickens are not supposed to get out of the run. The rule of thumb for the run is 10 sf per bird. Free range is letting the chickens roam without fencing. Yarding is letting chickens loose in a larger area but with perimeter fencing. A chicken tractor is a mobile run. I would think you would want the tractor to be 10 sf per bird, but I doubt it would be very mobile unless you only had a handful of chickens or a large tractor/forklift.

    If I had to guess, it seems most people let their chickens free range only when they are available to watch them. Other times they confine them to a coop and run. But a significant number around here free range their birds full time.

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