This pen, yes or no?

careeka22

Songster
Jul 29, 2016
399
381
176
Aylett VA
upload_2018-3-28_8-54-20.png


We have 11 hens (possibly one roo). My coop is in my profile picture. We were planning on building out the pen next week and we saw this. Seems like it may not be that sturdy but wanted opinions. So far our main predator seems to be stupid dog owners letting their dogs run free in the neighborhood and hawks. Not to say there aren't raccoons or others but my dogs barking scares off a lot and in almost 6 years I've never once seen anything but opossums.
 

gladahmae

Songster
7 Years
May 17, 2012
1,772
169
206
Benzie, MI
link: https://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/p...rsal-chicken-pen-for-30-chickens?cm_vc=-10005


So from the looks of it, it's 1/2in hardware cloth, and the covered roof is PVC. If your neighbor's dog (or your dog? the pic is covering up the post on my PC for some reason) is an issue, you'll certainly need to install a dig-barrier/skirt in addition to the pen. There will likely be recommendations from others on here about adding 2x2 or 4x4 welded wire to the frame as hwc *can* be not-too-difficult for large or determined predators to just rip through or off a frame.

Pre-fab stuff isn't very popular on here, but it does have its place for those who do not have the time or knowlege to build their own structures. There are usually complaints about the wood being poor quality, so if it were me, I would at least add pressure treated 2x4s or cedar all around the bottom where it would sit on the ground so it didn't rot out in a year.
 

X_and_Z

Songster
Feb 16, 2018
207
404
116
SF Bay Area
My Coop
My Coop
If dogs are an issue I would worry about how sturdy it is. I know my medium sized dogs could rip through most of the pre-made coops and if this is of similar quality it would need additional reinforcement or perhaps electric fencing to handle the dogs. Raccoons are nighttime predators here (I assume you have a secure coop for night) - if they are daytime problems where you are then I would definitely recommend electric fencing as an added security measure.

It is also on the small side for a run for that many (LF?) hens - I believe it is just about 9sqft per hen which isn't terrible, but if you are using it stand alone you will lose space to feeders/drinkers and nest boxes.
 

careeka22

Songster
Jul 29, 2016
399
381
176
Aylett VA
link: https://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/p...rsal-chicken-pen-for-30-chickens?cm_vc=-10005


So from the looks of it, it's 1/2in hardware cloth, and the covered roof is PVC. If your neighbor's dog (or your dog? the pic is covering up the post on my PC for some reason) is an issue, you'll certainly need to install a dig-barrier/skirt in addition to the pen. There will likely be recommendations from others on here about adding 2x2 or 4x4 welded wire to the frame as hwc *can* be not-too-difficult for large or determined predators to just rip through or off a frame.

Pre-fab stuff isn't very popular on here, but it does have its place for those who do not have the time or knowlege to build their own structures. There are usually complaints about the wood being poor quality, so if it were me, I would at least add pressure treated 2x4s or cedar all around the bottom where it would sit on the ground so it didn't rot out in a year.

Those we my main concerns as well. I actually already thought about putting it on top of some 2x4s but would need to find a way to secure them so it couldn't be pushed off. I was going to put a skirt around anything we build or buy so that's no problem. My idea for building is to put 2/3ft of hardware cloth on the bottom part of the coop and a skirt all around and the rest galvanized fencing. I want them to have a good bit of space because I don't have a lot of time to watch them free roaming and the stray dog got one of our hens. (outside dogs, not mine) Thanks!
 

careeka22

Songster
Jul 29, 2016
399
381
176
Aylett VA
If dogs are an issue I would worry about how sturdy it is. I know my medium sized dogs could rip through most of the pre-made coops and if this is of similar quality it would need additional reinforcement or perhaps electric fencing to handle the dogs. Raccoons are nighttime predators here (I assume you have a secure coop for night) - if they are daytime problems where you are then I would definitely recommend electric fencing as an added security measure.

It is also on the small side for a run for that many (LF?) hens - I believe it is just about 9sqft per hen which isn't terrible, but if you are using it stand alone you will lose space to feeders/drinkers and nest boxes.

The coop is nice and secure so not worried when they are in it at night, so I guess mostly daytime. We were hoping to avoid electric fencing just because we have 4 young kids and I don't want them to get shocked going near it. I was concerned about size too, I mean it seems ok but I really want them to have a good bit of space. We have a big areas in front of the coop that I want to enclose, my issue is the walk out is on the side so I need to build something that would encompass the side where they come out to the pen out in the front of the coop. Thank you!
 

X_and_Z

Songster
Feb 16, 2018
207
404
116
SF Bay Area
My Coop
My Coop
It's a small mesh but someone mentioned only 7.5 guage which seems weak to me? Not sure if it's hardware cloth or not.

7.5 wouldn't be the gauge of the mesh here. Most likely it is the same cheap hardware cloth used in all the TSC pre-fabs. It is decent for rodents but will not stand up to a determined dog/raccoon. But I agree with gladahmae that you can put some modifications in and have something decent pretty quickly.
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium Feather Member
8 Years
Nov 27, 2012
98,001
134,870
1,807
SW Michigan
My Coop
My Coop
It's a small mesh but someone mentioned only 7.5 guage which seems weak to me? Not sure if it's hardware cloth or not.
That's the thickness of the wire...7.5mm is 0.29" which seems large to me,
I'd be surpirsed if it was that heavy.
Spacing, or size of holes, is 1.3cm or 0.51".
Both of those came from the Q&A page.....thought it odd they were talking metric.
 

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