What size should I make my run?

cicknmama

Songster
5 Years
Sep 23, 2014
298
18
121
Hardin, Montana
I have an 8x8 coop and 16 chickens. I haven't built the run yet because I'm not sure about the size. I'm in Montana and our winters are harsh so they may have some days where they may stay inside. I would love some suggestions. Here is a picture
400
of my coop and space
 

fischnchix

In the Brooder
Apr 26, 2015
42
6
26
PNW
Are they going to free range at all? I am getting ready to build mine also. If it was me I'd do a 10x20 and at least partially covered. Lots of rain here so I need a place for them to stay dry and hopefully keep the inside of the coop clean longer.
 

Judy

Crowing
Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Feb 5, 2009
34,024
577
448
South Georgia
The formula size for the minimum would be 160 sq ft, or about 13' x 13'. I'd also suggest making part of it snow free, as they wlil be reluctant to walk on much snow, and that is a minimum size coop, which assumes 10 sq ft x 10 sq ft per hen outdoors.

Please read the excellent article that one of our members wrote, which is linked in my signature, on space needs for chickens.
 

ChickenMammX4

Songster
Mar 17, 2015
1,044
243
161
SW Ohio
Ditto on covering the run. My original plan was not to cover the run, when DH drew-up the actual plans to build, he included a roof...so glad we did and haven't even been through a winter yet :p

We can't free range so our run is larger than minimum (6 chickens, 8' x 16' run). Ability to free range and climate make a big difference. Since you mentioned concern about them having to stay in some days due to weather, I'd double it if possible. Better too big than too small, IMO. I feel better knowing they have a large, covered run they can use all year no matter the weather.
 

cicknmama

Songster
5 Years
Sep 23, 2014
298
18
121
Hardin, Montana
The formula size for the minimum would be 160 sq ft, or about 13' x 13'.  I'd also suggest making part of it snow free, as they wlil be reluctant to walk on much snow, and  that is a minimum size coop, which assumes 10 sq ft x 10 sq ft per hen outdoors.

Please read the excellent article that one of our members wrote, which is linked in my signature, on space needs for chickens.
Thanks, I will read that article. My girls have a very large fenced yard and free range during good weather. I plan on covering the run for weather protection. Last winter my hens were very reluctant to venture outside their old run while there was snow on the ground and I had some problems with pecking. We decided to build a larger coop and would like a larger run for winter. Thank you for your response.
 

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