Run top for keeping out just hawks or other predators, as well??

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by ima57boomer, May 2, 2011.

  1. ima57boomer

    ima57boomer Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 23, 2011
    I was just wondering if I even needed to put a top on my run, which hasn't been built yet. There will be safety under the coop as well as under an apple tree which will overhang the run. If the top of the run is to only keep out hawks, then I'd think I'm safe with not covering it. I do live in a rural area, with raccoons and other animals, but we have two good dogs, one being a Great Pyrenees, which I would think would help guard the girls. They will be locked up at night. We haven't built the coop yet, either. They are in a temporary run during the day and spend their nights in the top floor of an old summer kitchen outbuilding. I hand carry them to the outside run every day and then bring them in at night. They're about 10 wks old and I am a pathetic newbie. I just want them be safe, but my hubbie isn't as into this whole project as I, and saving money is a consideration, as well. Thanks for any advice from all you wise chicken sages.[​IMG]
  2. falinagirl

    falinagirl Out Of The Brooder

    Feb 3, 2011
    I put 2 x 4 welded wire on top of our run. It was fairly inexpensive at $25 for a 5' x 25' roll.
  3. Schwartzfarmnc

    Schwartzfarmnc Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 28, 2010
    West Jefferson
    Rather be safe then sorry, is my motto. We used the clear plastic panels from the hardware store, our run is a 9x20 and it cost us about $200, but it also keeps out the rain and leaves and predators, which in my mind is the safest and sound of mind I can have for the money, and the clear panels allows the sun to come in but not overheat the birds, but this is just my opinion.
  4. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    The overhanging tree will "considerably help" discourage hawks, although sometimes people lose chickens to hawks even under trees, not often tho. A top will of course also keep your chickens *in*, should they take a whim to go over the wall so to speak, which they might or might not, there is no good way to predict (although the smaller and more barren the run, the more likely)

    If the hens will be shut up every night, there is not a lot to worry about in terms of things that would be kept out by a top as long as your fence is dogproof. Raccoons *occasionally* hunt during daytime, especially in early summer when they have babies to feed, but it is pretty uncommon. And it would take a fairly serious wire top to keep the coons out anyhow, e.g. the previous poster's 2x4 wire.

    Good luck, have fun,

  5. ima57boomer

    ima57boomer Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 23, 2011
    I think I'm planning to use 8 foot fence posts, with galvanized wire, reinforced on the bottom with 1" hardware cloth, making the run around 5 1/2ft or so tall. It will probably be in the area of 15 or so feet long, by 8 feet wide. I have ten girls. Thanks for all the advice.

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