I spent the weekend building our coop for six silkies and sizzles. (We can have up to six hens—to start with we have four chicks.) It's pretty darn sad but solid and good while we learn more about what our chickens like and need. I wouldn't bet on it being super predator proof, but I have a hard enough time getting it open that I think it's a good start. When the chicks are ready I feel confident putting them in there at night. The coop is in our backyard. It's too dark to measure but I think it's about 25' x 15'? (New house, heh.) There's a 6' wooden privacy fence. Our house has an open plan with a sliding glass door in the main living area opening to the yard. So, for most of the day I am within view of the backyard. How safe would it be to let our chickens free range in our yard as adults? I feel like not at all, especially with silkies. But maybe I'm being overprotective? I just hate to spend a lot of time and money building a run if the flock would be happier and reasonably safe free in our yard. I'd also like to wait and build a really good run (and coop) when we're more knowledgeable about chickens and have made some planned changes to the property. Of course I'm not interested in learning any lessons the hard way by losing a bird! We do have some flexibility in moving the coop around, providing cover, other creative ideas. Thanks for your help!