Run size question

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Michael's Chick, Jun 29, 2008.

  1. Michael's Chick

    Michael's Chick New Egg

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    Apr 25, 2008
    Everett, WA
    My li'l australorps are 7 weeks old now and we are more than ready to get them moved outside. Problem is, we have yet to build the run! My question is, my initial plan was to build a 20x10 run hoping that a run of that size would keep them from turning it into a stinky mud pen. Do you think that will be big enough to keep it from turning into mud? It's the biggest I can make it for the space I have to work with, so if that won't work I might as well make it fairly small since we plan to free range them during the day and it will take up a lot less of the lawn (which will make hubby happy.)

    So what do y'all think? Oh, I should probably mention that there are 3 of them. The chickens I mean. 3 Chickens.

    Thanks!
    Teresa
     
  2. CarlaRiggs

    CarlaRiggs Chillin' With My Peeps

    Teresa,

    That large a run is *plenty* of room for three hens. [​IMG]

    Do you have a roof over the run? That will help tremendously to keep the rain out... you may also want to consider having a gutter of some type with a rain spout to direct the water away from the coop.
    Is your soil clay? Add sand to the soil, along with other decomposable things, ie. grass clippings, leaves, etc. The more friable the soil, the less chance of being mucky.

    Carla
     
  3. Michael's Chick

    Michael's Chick New Egg

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    Apr 25, 2008
    Everett, WA
    I'll put a roof over part of it to keep the food dry and allow them a place to be outside and have a little shelter. And it will keep the rain out of their coop. I'll have the rain directed to the sides of the run off of that. And their coop is a giant (4'x4') dog house, so it will direct water to the side as well.

    I should have mentioned that I live in Washington. Rain is actually essential if I want vegetation to grow in there. I built a cat run once and put a roof over it and everything under it died because it didn't get rain. But the only rain that will get on the grass/weeds in the chicken run will be what God puts on it. No extra drainage.

    I don't think our soil's clay. It's just... dirt. Not so different from what you buy in the bags, except add a whole bunch of rocks and roots and more rocks and then some more rocks. Oh, and rocks.

    Thanks!
    Teresa
     
  4. CarlaRiggs

    CarlaRiggs Chillin' With My Peeps

    Teresa,
    I wouldn't worry about any green in the run.... the chickens will most likely scratch, peck and eat it all within a couple of months. I'm planning on keeping hay & straw in the run to keep the hens busy looking for bugs, etc.
    The Left Angeles Times had an interesting little article, and I thought I might try it with the chickens. Adding their fertilizer [​IMG] can only be beneficial.
    http://www.latimes.com/features/home/la-hm.0612.no-dig-pg,0,4680628.photogallery

    Carla
     
  5. Sulteric

    Sulteric Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 7, 2008
    Central Massachusetts
    Mine is 16x8, I have five bantams and plenty of room for more, no problem.
     

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