How to build a chicken run
In this article, Timi Schmidt looks at how to build a chicken run.
If you believe chickens should be able to run around and play freely, you are not alone.
However, keeping free-range chickens can come with several problems – the chickens can pose a danger to themselves or your garden plants while being a target for predators such as foxes.
A chicken run can allow your chickens to roam around freely in the open air while also protecting them from the dangers of the wild.
If you are a beginner in chicken keeping, or looking to increase the safety of your chickens, this DIY guide by Wire Fence will show you how to build a chicken run from scratch!
That is right – no need for expensive expert appointments; you can easily recreate this project at home.
What you will need:
- Wooden fence posts
- Staples/Cable ties
- Chicken wire
- Wooden Planks.
- Shade netting (optional)
- Wire Cutters
Planning – you need to take into account how many chickens you have and start planning accordingly.
You should allow at least one square meters per chicken, and attach the chicken run directly to your coop, so your chickens can safely get from one into the other.
It is useful to do some calculations on paper before coming up with the perfect shape and size of your run.
Once you have your plans ready, you can start by positioning your posts. Start digging holes of even distances (approx. 2 meters) at the perimeter of your desired area. Make sure to place two posts closer to each other where you’d prefer your gate to be.
Start hammering the posts approximately 30 centimeters deep into the ground. You can use cement or gravel to set the posts in the soil, which will make them sturdier and last longer.
Start attaching the chicken wire to the posts using staples. Staple the mesh at approximately every 15 centimetres.
Do not forget to attach the chicken wire to the coop itself.
Once the rest of the wire is in place, you will need to place the gate. You can opt for a DIY gate by taking measurements and creating a wooden frame of that size, attaching the chicken wire to it.
Hang the gate using three gate hinges, attaching a latch on the outside.
Make sure to create a hole beside the latch so you can reach it from the inside.
You can use a pre-made gate as well; just make sure its measurements match your project.
In order for your chicken run to be safe for your chickens, you will need protection from predators. In order to do this, start with making a frame the right size to cover your chicken run.
Cut your planks to size with a saw and attach them to each other with nails, forming a frame. You need to use a minimum of 4 planks, but using more will make it sturdier.
Once you have a sturdy frame, attach the chicken wire to it, using staples. Staple your chicken wire at approximately 15 centimetres.
It is not healthy for chickens to be exposed to direct sunlight over prolonged periods of time.
For this reason, it is recommended that you install shade netting to your chicken run. The shade netting can be attached to the top frame using staples.
Once the shade netting is added, you can attach the top frame to your chicken run. You can do this using nails or screws.
Congratulations! If you have followed all the steps carefully, you should have a completely functional chicken run for your chickens to roam around in. Good job!
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