What age are they safe in the run alone?

Hamstery

Songster
7 Years
Feb 7, 2012
269
9
103
New England
We have four baby chicks, 5 weeks old tomorrow. They moved out to the coop this weekend. We let them out in the run during the day while we were outside to supervise. They love it and have been having small trips out there for some time.
Back to work today so no one is home most of the day. They were begging to come out this morning. But I'm not sure when it's safe to let them roam the run all day alone. It's secured on all four sides and the top with chicken wire. And the wire is buried on all sides as well. We don't have any loose dogs in the neighborhood and I would think that any other predators would only be out at night ( when they are safe in the coop) , but correct me if I am wrong please.
We had four adult hens in the same run every day with no issues for many months, but i am worried because the babies are so small.
When did you leave your chicks in the run unsupervised?
 

chicmom

Dances with Chickens
10 Years
Feb 24, 2009
8,696
277
316
Strasburg Ohio
I think they'll be fine. At this age, provided the weather is warm, they should be able to run in and out of the coop, into their enclosed run, all day long.
 

robynz

In the Brooder
7 Years
Mar 18, 2012
70
0
31
I would think they would be fine - I left my 4 week olds home alone in my yard yesterday for 4 hours (we don't have the wire up in the run yet) They don't wander far :)
 

Hamstery

Songster
7 Years
Feb 7, 2012
269
9
103
New England
They haven't learned to go back IN by themselves and I don't know yet how well they can maneuver the ramp. So I will start letting them out each night this week before dark and see how they do with that.
Thanks for your replies. I will feel better about leaving them out now. They just seem so small.
 

nakstk

Songster
8 Years
Sep 19, 2011
801
30
128
Kalama, Washington
I have 3 that will be 5 weeks old tomorrow and was going to ask the same question. I will keep a light on them if it get to cold at night but I want them to be able to adjust to being outside. They have been in our garage since we got them. The only thing I am worried about is the grass. I don't have any grit small enough for them and their coop and run is out in the grass.
 

bj taylor

Songster
8 Years
Oct 28, 2011
1,131
44
168
North Central Texas
my only hesitation would be that chicken wire is very penetrable by predators. perhaps you live in an area w/low numbers of predators & it will be fine.
 

GardenGal

Songster
8 Years
Mar 11, 2011
1,421
32
153
Western WA
I would be nervous about predators too, unless you live in a very urban area. I've seen raccoons and coyotes about at all hours, not to mention hawks and eagles, and we live within the city limits of a small/medium town. Also, I really recommend hardware cloth because rodents LOVE chicken food, and that's just a nasty problem. Sorry to be the voice of doom, just want to spare you potential heartache.
 

Hamstery

Songster
7 Years
Feb 7, 2012
269
9
103
New England
I have been thinking a lot about the run and I think I want to cover it all with 2x4 welded wire. Opinions?
 

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