Raising the Roof

Quarantine Diaries – Finishing the Chicken Coop

It seems like forever ago when we got to work on all things chicken coop related! It’s crazy to think that that was only just two weeks ago, on the dot, that we headed south to pick up our laying hens.

After Jimmy-Rigging together an old wire dog kennel with a panel on top for a sad excuse of an “outdoor pen,” I was thankful to break ground, literally, early Saturday morning on their outdoor pen. If only it had been as simple as putting a pen up and around the hens – I think it would have been done sooner.

Saturday night progress of the chicken coop run. I just knew the ladies were going to love the option to stretch their legs!

My first priority has been to keep predators out. With that in mind, I should have realized (in hindsight) that predators weren’t necessarily going to attack them in broad daylight. It was going to be under the cover of darkness that they tried to take my ladies.

That didn’t stop me from making sure that we put the most perfect, predator safe outside all the way around. Using a strong, thick wired paneling, I made a 12” safety through the bottom of the pen and then a 12” safety height bordering the entire pen. I covered the whole outdoor pen in chicken wire; sides, top and ends!

It was a lot of work and I may have a newfound hatred of chicken wire. It’s literally the hardest and most uncooperative fencing I have EVER worked with and I feel like I have worked with my fair share.

Attaching it to the chicken coop may have ruined the mural that my sister was working on, but I have already figured out a few back up options to keep my sisters mural intact.

I think, more than anything, the best part of the chicken coop is not just the ability for my hens to have more freedom and stimulation outdoors during the days, but also that we got some authentic Vitamin D AND, for the first time since I don’t know when, we actually did a fun family project outdoors. Ya, there was some bickering, but it was a truly great experience!

It seems that ending the evening with a puzzle on a door set-up is the norm in our family. We put our brains together overnight to construct the idea of what kind of door could work here!

The only thing missing was my wonderful boyfriend who has been slammed at work. He’s always so much fun with projects because he has so much energy! I hope that we can do a lot more future projects together! And, I hope I’m not counting my chickens before they’re hatched, I definitely see a lot more projects in our future!

Our next set of work was to finish laying out the deer fencing that would surround our entire garden. Knowing that our garden is going to be of the highest priority this year, it is a known fact that my poor mother wages war with the local deer and turkey population every year. They’re pretty convinced that she’s planted that garden just for them and nothing can tell them differently!

We got about 33% of the garden fenced before we hit a hiccup, leaving the project for another day. If anyone reading this has ever made a large gate for a garden around deer fencing – PLEASE SHOOT ME A MESSAGE! Our issue at the moment is that my dad wants the convenience and ability to get a tractor in to till the garden and dump fresh compost from his mixes cooking below.

At the moment, we haven’t found a plan! But I hope that we can have it done here soon!


3 thoughts on “Raising the Roof

  1. Chicken wire is the WORST!!! Especially when you get to the center of the roll, lol! I’d love to learn some tips on how to install it and have it look decent and not all warped (which is how ours always turns out!).

    Could you install a cattle gate that has wire on it? There are some large enough to get a tractor through when open.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I totally concur on chicken wire! If I had all the time and resources in the world, I think I would have cut and stapled it to wood frames and then put each panel up! But, alas, I did not have the time as I wanted to get my ladies out into a bigger pen! Ours is sadly warped and I’m worried about the fall when the leaves fall on top of it – I don’t want it to sag down through the middle!

      I think that’s an awesome idea with the cattle gate! I had actually suggested it but I guess my dad had wanted to swing the whole end of the fence open so he could run a tractor through each run on the garden. He’ll think on it and come up with something I guess!


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