WHY only 18" up withe the hardware cloth??

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by jamband, Jun 13, 2011.

  1. jamband

    jamband Songster

    Apr 26, 2011
    I have asked this a few times randomly in other threads with not much response. I will just present a typical situation I see alot at the coops I look at. Take an old chainlink dog kenel for examples. A great start for a coop. Then you need to reduce the spacing to stop reach through, stop birds from poking heads out, and keep out small predators. Then add a roof and skirting to keep out climbers and diggers respectively.

    So the major thing I see is people use 1/2 inch hardware cloth for the bottom 18 inches and then nothing above that. Why? Wont a weasel or other small predator just climbe the 18 inches for entrance?? Also since coons can dig and also rip chicken wire why is chicken wire so often used as skirting? Can they not just rip it and then dig through?

    Just really curious about this. I am personally gonna go with 2x4s and plywood for a small duck house. It will be way cheaper than even a 50 dollar kennel with all the needed additions. Really like hear the reasoning and I will be adding skirting to my house as well and if there is no need for hardware cloth than I dont want want to use it for skirting.

    Thanks all

  2. bryan99705

    bryan99705 Songster

    The main reason to do this is so the little fuzzybutts don't slip thru the wire and so a coon can't reach thru and grab a sleeping bird. Some people buy 36" or 48" wire, run it down the wall and wrap it under the panel leaving it lay as a skirt.

    If you have weasel, ermine, or mink, just build the whloe thing with hardware cloth cause they seem to be able to slip thru, over, or under anything bigger
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2011
  3. Tala

    Tala Flock Mistress

    The 18" of hardware cloth is to keep raccoons from grabbing a bird through the wire. Chickens are only so tall.
    Presumably the rest of the fence will keep the raccoon from actually getting IN the pen. You are correct that a weasel or such will just go over the 18" of hardware cloth. However, MOST of us mainly have problems with raccoons. Hardware cloth is expensive fencing, so if you don't have a weasel problem why spend the money fencing one out? As far as chicken wire on the ground skirt, I used welded wire myself. I only use chicken wire to separate chickens within the predator-resistant area.
  4. JoePa

    JoePa Songster

    Apr 18, 2011
    Lehigh County Pa.
    I use welded wire fencing around my entire run - sides and roof - with a shirt of welded wire extending around 12 inches on the ground around the perimeter - I then cover the welded wire with regulator chicken wire - if I had a weasel problem I would add another 18 inches of hardware cloth around the bottom of the sides - I don't weasels can really climb that good - but they can get through some pretty holes - I figure I built a pretty strong run and coop - if some pedator can somehow get through my defense - it deserves a chicken dinner - it would be it's last meal - [​IMG]
  5. ranchhand

    ranchhand Rest in Peace 1956-2011

    Aug 25, 2008
    Quote:I think you're confusing run with coop. The chain link dog kennel is the run, with extra coverage to discourage predators from reaching in and grabbing a bird. Most people also have a coop in the run, in which the birds are secured at night. The coop is usually far more solid and secure that the daytime run. Most, but not all, predators hunt more actively at night.

    Does that help at all? Hope so! [​IMG]
  6. jamband

    jamband Songster

    Apr 26, 2011
    thanks all. I know the deal with the reach through.....it just seemed like if going up 18 with the HWC why not all the way since a weasel could potentially climb up and in...or at least chicken wire above the 18....Was just curious.....

    JoePa....I thought the HWC as oppossed to chicken wire was because coons can just rip it?

    Ranchhand.....No not confused. I have seen lots of people using Dog kennels as the coop. The top covered with wire and tarps etc.... I dont like the idea of a permanent run and would not have one. This will just be a night shelter/protection for my ducks that will free range on my property all the other time. I would totally understand on just a run because the likely hood of coons in daylight is so low.

    thanks all
  7. BarefootMom

    BarefootMom Songster

    Jul 20, 2010
    Half Way, Missouri
    main reason other than the reaching through is cost. It would cost a fortune to do it all the way up all around on most peoples runs. If I was going to do the whole thing in hardware cloth I wouldn't mess with anyother type of fencing. (like dog kennel run)

  8. jamband

    jamband Songster

    Apr 26, 2011
    I'm not saying for a big run but for a 6x6 dog kennel.....So it seems like the reason is either most people dont have weasel problems or weasels wont bother climbing up to get in the larger opening??

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