What is the run roof for????

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Qi Chicken, Dec 13, 2009.

  1. Qi Chicken

    Qi Chicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 3, 2009
    Not to sound too stupid....but what exactly is the roof on the run supposed to do? Keep out flying predators---hawks and the like? Protect them from the elements somewhat? What about bigger things like coons etc?

    We live in rural Iowa and the coop is done. We are planning on getting chicks in early spring and will need to build the run as soon as it warms up. I think I'm thinking about this because it is something to think about when you have just been completely snowed in for 48 hours!!!

    Someone recommended using 30% shade cloth. I looked it up and it looked easy to work with but certainly wouldn't keep a coon out. We are planning on having an automatic door opener which is NOT installed yet......... so they may be out a little in the evenings but will be locked up at night. We were planning on a solid roof but budget concerns are sneakin up on me. Tis the season I guess.

    With those automatic door openers on a timer---------we had 60 mph winds and would not have wanted the door open the past few days. How do you stop it from opening or shut it once it has?

    Thanks all!!!!
  2. patman75

    patman75 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Keep predators out.

    keep the run dry and to keep the smell down.

    If you have them locked up at night you would have less of a reason to not add a roof. But that wont stop a random dog or other animal from climbing over the fence during the day or a hawk flying in for a meal.
  3. Tala

    Tala Flock Mistress

    I have welded wire fencing over my chicken tractor's run. On top of that is 90% shadecloth.

    If you keep your birds locked up securely for the night, then yes the run cover is mostly to keep out Hawks and such, or provide shade.
  4. LynneP

    LynneP Chillin' With My Peeps

    A roof designed to exclude predators is wonderful and in addition you get a dry run, which is such a pleasure- cleaner birds/eggs, and far nicer for you to service. Low odor, easy to maintain the slope and rule out erosion and flooding. Gosh it's da bomb!
  5. mandelyn

    mandelyn Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 30, 2009
    Goshen, OH
    Mainly to keep predators from flying/climbing into the run, and to keep flying chickens contained. I have bird netting over the top as hawk prevention and to keep my birds from becoming dog bait since they're in the back yard. Won't do any good against a coon or any climbing/chewing/sneaky nighttime predator, so they're locked up at night.

    The thing about the automatic doors, is the chickens won't know they're on a specific schedual. You'll still have to go out there and check for birds who thought they'd roost outside, or who missed the door... or other such chicken nonsense. Atleast until they know the routine.

    You wouldn't want to shade the whole thing, chickens do like to "tan" in the sun with a leg and wing cocked out. I did an A-Frame shade made from wood with a roost under it, for when they got too hot or if it was raining. Keeps the ground under it ready for a dust bath anyways. I also keep their outside feed under it, keeps it dry.

    For the Ft Knox of coops though, you'll want a welded wire roof, as well as wire going into the ground about a foot, that'll keep diggers out too. If you want to add a solid roof over part of it, or shading... that's up to you. Basic predator prevention would just be wire over it. If you're only concerned about hawks since they get locked up at night, then a netting would be good enough. Depends on what your area has for predators.
  6. gsim

    gsim Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 18, 2009
    East Tennessee
    Tala nailed it good. Madelyn also made a good point about not roofing the entire run.

    I did 6 ft welded wire set in cement. Then I did a roll of chicken wire 2 ft tall all around the perimeter inside. (keeps the chooks from poking their heads out) then I installed a fence charger and 4 courses of hot wire all around including the gate. Mine is open to the sky and is 2000 sq ft. I do have a large resident crow population tho to keep hawks and owls away, and so far have had no losses. I do have all large birds tho, no chicks to attract airborne preds If you are having chicks you will have to cover the whole thing on top either with half netting and half solid or whatever works for your climate. I LOVE my fence charger. [​IMG]
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2009

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