Newbie - help with run size please

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Joined: 24 Oct 2013, 11:29

Newbie - help with run size please

Post by acw295 » 24 Oct 2013, 11:52


I have recently acquired 4 Pekin bantams – I know they aren’t great layers but we aren’t after many eggs. I love their characters already – really funny :)

Bit of relevant background - we have a large garden (at least 1/3 acre) but it has no fencing or proper boundary – we live in a rented cottage on a farm and are surrounded by fields and a wood. It is beautiful – no neighbours for 1 mile and no road. The farm raises pheasants and so they regularly patrol and shoot foxes, but I’m still wary of potential for fox attack so can’t leave the chickens out when we aren’t around :( we also have 3 cats but they are completely uninterested in the bantams now – they were curious for a few days but now take no notice.

I work full time and so am out all day, my other half is sometimes based at home but this really varies. Next year once we have lighter evenings I expect to be able to give them some free range time every day, but now it is dark by the time I am home so their free range time will be limited to weekends and the odd few hours Mon-Fri when he is home.

We have a coop with an attached run which can, apparently hold 6-9 bantams (I’m sure the house can but the run can’t!) but the attached run is only approx. 7ft x 2ft 5” (2.17m x 0.75m)

We have bought a run extension which takes it to 11ft 8” (3.57m x 0.75m)so approx 29 sqft or 2.7 sqm (I think!).

Is this going to be ok for the days they are confined to indoors, which at the worst case will be 5 days a week in winter? We can’t secure the garden or add any large structures, but I don’t want them to be miserable. We will move the run weekly so they will have new grass and are putting things in their run to entertain them (dustbath, treats, perches etc)

Thoughts please!

I’m sure I’ll have lots more questions as trying to get them tamer, sort out their food etc etc. I am addicted already!

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Re: Newbie - help with run size please

Post by laffinfowl » 25 Oct 2013, 14:48

It sounds quite adequate for four Bantams,only thing i would say is be careful of foxes digging in under the run when you are not there,a wire skirt attached with cable ties to the bottom foot of the run and laying down all around it on the grass(so you have a foot of wire attached to the run and about three foot laying on the grass),pegged down will make it more secure.When you,re moving it just lift the wire,move the run and peg it down again. They can dig under fairly quick if undisturbed and hungry.

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Re: Newbie - help with run size please

Post by Diane » 25 Oct 2013, 16:51

Or you could always level out the run area and put down paving slabs. No need to concrete them in, if you aren't allowed to, just place them on a thick base of sand. And put a border of paving slabs around the outside too - it will save your shoes getting muddy in the winter. That way, nothing will be able to burrow in. And you can take the slabs with you when or if you move.

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