winterizing a run

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by nancy1zak, May 31, 2010.

  1. nancy1zak

    nancy1zak Songster

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    We are looking for ideas on how to winterize our run. We are looking for ideas now so that when October comes we are ready. We have two runs. One that is 5' x 4' that is off of the side of the coop, and another larger run that is 6' x 10' off the back of the coop. The girls go in between the two runs by going under the coop which is on runners and enclosed.
     

  2. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    Lots of choices... some tarp the sides of their runs to block winter wind. You can stack straw bales to create windbreaks. Some go all out and buy the clear roof panels to screw onto the sides of the runs. I'm sure there are many other ways too. At least you have plenty of time to figure out something that will work for you! [​IMG]
     
  3. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Some other ideas too: Scrap plywood, roof tin, canvas or 6+mil plastic sheeting can also be used to cover one or more sides of the run. Personally I like the plastic sheeting best, if you're going to use something solid like that, because it keeps things bright and well-lit; if you staple it THROUGH duct tape it will stay pretty well IME.

    If you use burlap instead of a tarp it is less wind-load on the run walls (do not underestimate the force of wind!) while still giving pretty good windbreak effect. If you are at all unsure about how strong, rigidly-square or well-anchored your run fence is, this may be a good option to consider.

    A roof is nice in Northern areas, but it really does need to be designed/supported *as a roof* i.e. easily strong enough to support snow load.

    For times when the weather is very cold but the ground either is bare or is icy with packed-down snow, strewing some hay or straw outside will make things warmer for the chickens' feeties and thus make them more apt to go out. Be aware that this will suddenly develop a tremendous overpowering stench come spring thaw, and need to be removed (somewhat laboriously, as it will be quite waterlogged) ASAP when that happens, but in many cases it's still real worthwhile.

    Good luck, have fun,

    Pat
     
  4. ADozenGirlz

    ADozenGirlz The Chicken Chick[IMG]emojione/assets/png/00ae.png

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    Here's how we winterized our run. It worked like a charm! There was never a day when the girls weren't out in the run.

    [​IMG]
     
  5. Marie1234

    Marie1234 Songster

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    I'm a big fan of the truck topper. It doesn't winterize the whole run but it gives them an area of protection where they can get a good dust bath. We found one for free that had a couple windows missing and it works perfectly.
     
  6. nancy1zak

    nancy1zak Songster

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    Morris County, NJ
    Great ideas! Thx. So, the Burlap...does it hold up when it gets wet? I think the only time I had the opportunity to use burlap was when I was a Brownie and we made Sit-Upons. (Not saying how long along that was...[​IMG] For the plastic sheeting...do you apply wood strips over top to hold the plastic sheeting in place?
     
  7. CoyoteMagic

    CoyoteMagic RIP ?-2014

    the burlap will probably just last one season. The plastic if you reinforce it with the duct tape will last several years. Straw bales would last only a year but can be composted and used again in numerous other ways. I always have a bale of straw in my run. After it's soaked through, I'll roll it over. The "girls" go crazy for all the bugs and grubs that have made it their home. I flip it over maybe once or twice a week.
     

  8. ADozenGirlz

    ADozenGirlz The Chicken Chick[IMG]emojione/assets/png/00ae.png

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    Quote:My husband put wood strips over the plastic sheeting and it stayed in place through many a snow storm with no problems this winter. It's the industrial, construction grade sheeting from The Home Depot- it was $40 a roll.
     
  9. elmo

    elmo Songster

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    Quote:Now, there's a good idea. Easy, and gets the job done. Good for you!
     
  10. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    I've had burlap on my turkey run since last Oct or Nov, and it is still in "like-new" condition. For whatever that's worth.

    Pat
     

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