Using old barn for coop and run

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Iowamom, Jun 19, 2008.

  1. Iowamom

    Iowamom Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 19, 2008
    Carlisle, Iowa
    Hi folks,
    I am in the process of getting ready for chickens. We have a large barn on our property that I would like to use part of for the chickens. On one end is a large "stall" where it has 3 sides and 1 side open. Next to that is a completely enclosed room - I'm guessing about 8x8ft, with a door and lighting. I know that will work well as the coop. What I am wondering is if I can just close up the opening on the end of the barn and make that the chicken run. I plan on letting them free range in the yard as well. (we have an acre w/about 2/3 of it fenced in) I just can't find anything searching the internet on if it is acceptable to have a run closed on 3 sides. Thanks in advance for your help!
    Pics of barn: (hopefully I do this right!)
    This is from last summer when we bought the place. You can see the barn in the background.
    [​IMG]
    The window looks into the room I would like to make into the coop.
    [​IMG]
     
  2. Wildsky

    Wildsky Wild Egg!

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    Oct 13, 2007
    California
    Looks great!

    I would suggest an outdoor run area, so they can be enclosed when needed, but still get sunshine and still get to dig around in the dirt etc....
    an indoor run area would be nice for winter....

    You're not too far from me - I'm over in Nebraska. HOWDY!! [​IMG]

    The bigger indoor area you have, the more chickens you can have ! [​IMG]
     
  3. Iowamom

    Iowamom Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 19, 2008
    Carlisle, Iowa
    Oooops. I wasn't too clear. I meant cover the opening with chicken wire so that the chickens can't get out, but still open to the sun and air. I was thinking I could even take down part of the wall on the end and change it out for chicken wire if they needed more sunlight. I'm just not sure the purpose of the run - fresh air and sunshine with added protection? They will also be doing a lot of free ranging on our land.
     
  4. Wildsky

    Wildsky Wild Egg!

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    Oct 13, 2007
    California
    Quote:That sounds fine, I'm sure they will be happy - chickens are super easy to please, and if they're getting out to free-range part of the time, they'll be THRILLED.
    [​IMG]
     
  5. Iowamom

    Iowamom Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 19, 2008
    Carlisle, Iowa
    Thanks for the input, Wildsky. I will just wire off the opening for now. We can always adjust later if need be I suppose. [​IMG] There is enough to do getting ready without creating a whole chicken run when I have this structure already waiting to be used!
     
  6. pbjmaker

    pbjmaker Overrun With Chickens

    May 9, 2008
    Central Iowa
    That looks like a great place! Im new here myself but have found that there is an incredible wealth of knowledge on this forum.

    BTW - I'm in Iowa also!
     
  7. Iowamom

    Iowamom Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 19, 2008
    Carlisle, Iowa
    I have another question about my chicken run. I will have the opening wired off and the other two walls are enclosed - metal siding. But it is just over dirt, not concrete like my coop. Do you think predators will try digging under the metal walls or only under the fence when they can see the chicken? I have buried a wire skirt extending out a foot in front of the fence already. Anyone have any experience with this kind of situation?

    Thanks! My adopted chickens arrive tomorrow. [​IMG]
     
  8. Iowamom

    Iowamom Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 19, 2008
    Carlisle, Iowa
    Help please! Can anyone answer my question? I posted it late last night so I am trying again. We are picking up our adopted chickens today and I won't let them in the run until I know it is secure. Will digging predators dig under the metal walls - anyone know? Thanks!
     
  9. LynneP

    LynneP Chillin' With My Peeps

    About predators- it's safer to assume they will dig climb and chew. I love your idea of an indoor and an outdoor run, it's going to be wonderful in winter especially. If you use 1/2" hardware cloth instead of poultry wire you can keep predators out and chickens in. Since you're starting from scratch it would be worth it. Check my link below for some hardware cloth ideas, and I'm sure others will make suggestions. Our feral cats tried their best today to enter our roofed run without luck, so we had a free predator test.

    We build our coop in a similar stall and the run outside an insulated wall.

    [​IMG]
     
  10. Iowamom

    Iowamom Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 19, 2008
    Carlisle, Iowa
    Thanks for the input. I was just thinking that maybe it would be worth digging a shallow trench around the two metal sides. Then I could pour quickrete to make a mini-sidewalk. That should deter the digging predators and make it easier on DH to mow around the back of the barn.
     

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