Geodesic Hen run - Thoughts and opinions

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Matt;owry7

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Geodesic Hen run - Thoughts and opinions
« on: May 08, 2014, 09:12 »
I am new to keeping chickens and have put a bit of thought into the run and housing set up. I decided to build a Geodesic run as we have had foxes in the garden in the past and a dome offers 360 degree protection and gives the hens a good sized run. Many of the runs I have seen I found to be quite ugly so I was determined to try something different. I am wondering what members thoughts are on the look of the dome and if they can foresee any issues?
dome2.jpg
dome1.jpg

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snowdrops

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Re: Geodesic Hen run - Thoughts and opinions
« Reply #1 on: May 08, 2014, 09:20 »
I haven't got chickens & have seen something similar before. Aesthetically it is interesting, but was is to stop a fox digging under? The usual approach is to bury netting around the outside edge facing out wards down to about 18 inches I believe, that would be very awkward with that design I would have thought.
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Matt;owry7

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Re: Geodesic Hen run - Thoughts and opinions
« Reply #2 on: May 08, 2014, 19:22 »
I have metal stakes around the dome to prevent fox access, I have used this design of dome frame to also produce a green house. I simply covered the frame in poly tunnel material, I also have a wooden shed made from one of the dome frames. They are very pretty structures and do draw a lot of comment from passers by.

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Trillium

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Re: Geodesic Hen run - Thoughts and opinions
« Reply #3 on: May 08, 2014, 20:35 »
Interesting idea. Very definitely peg it down tightly. Any wind or determined critter can tip it up enough for access.

Do you plan to move it around the yard like a chicken tractor? It would be ideal for that.

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grinling

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Re: Geodesic Hen run - Thoughts and opinions
« Reply #4 on: May 08, 2014, 22:14 »
covered are when it rains as well as shade for sunny hot days. dust bathing facilites.
foxes dig deep so how do you prevent a dig in by them or rats, you say stakes, so
is it not portable as that grass would last less than a week.

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Matt;owry7

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Re: Geodesic Hen run - Thoughts and opinions
« Reply #5 on: May 09, 2014, 17:40 »
The geodesic dome is quite heavy and will not be moved by wind . A dome is one of the most wind resistant structures known to man (a sphere bring the most resistant) and my house would lose its roof before the dome would shift. This dome is staked down so it would take quite an effort to move but a light weight one could be used as a tractor to move about your garden. I designed this as most hen runs are very expensive, ugly and offer limited space. The dome run is a bit extravagant but offers a huge area to "free range" in and even fly if my girls wish. Anyone can buy the brackets and produce a dome themselves of any size. This dome is four metres wide if you have a huge flock then a six metre dome could be built.

I have had the hens on the grass for three weeks now but yes it is losing the battle and is thinning and even bald in places LOL. But I think this happens in all permanent runs!

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Trillium

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Re: Geodesic Hen run - Thoughts and opinions
« Reply #6 on: May 09, 2014, 19:35 »
The thinning of grass/groundcover is inevitable with chickens who need to scratch every thing. Which is why some sort of moveable 'tractor' is ideal, or, to have a 2nd run the chickens can use while the first one recovers.

Because the dome structure is heavy, please don't assume that foxes won't burrow below and get into the pen.

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Fluff

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Re: Geodesic Hen run - Thoughts and opinions
« Reply #7 on: May 16, 2014, 19:08 »
Just an idea what if you had hinged triangles that laid out on the floor to stop the foxes getting near to tunnel although the weak point would be the convergence at the frame .  If you had a catch on them to fix them up when you wanted to move .
NOT ARF !

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cammi

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Re: Geodesic Hen run - Thoughts and opinions
« Reply #8 on: September 01, 2014, 16:35 »
After going to all that trouble could you go a bit further and put it on a concrete/slab base with woodchip on??  That way foxes can't dig in, the soil won't get 'sick' and its dead easy to clean.  From experience permanent site on grass looks pretty to start with but soon is messy, smelly and hard work. Our 'run' is on a concrete base with a layer of hard wood chip, sooooo easy to maintain, once a year normally, after the winter, remove all the wooden chip hose it down and replace with fresh, hey presto done.

Sorry if teaching grandma to suck eggs etc lol
11 Chickens (Rhode Rock, Bluebell, Copper Black, Columbine, Coucou, Mystery Hen, Clarance Court, Araucana, brown hen ) , 3 Cats (1 mog, 1 bengal, 1 Bengal x),  2 Little Boys, 1 dog (Golden Retriever) and 1 Husband

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waddecar

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Re: Geodesic Hen run - Thoughts and opinions
« Reply #9 on: September 07, 2014, 10:32 »
Well i think it is a terriffic idea, can i have a copy of the plans please. Our hens have loads of room and are surrounded by an electric fence - so far so good. But we are on a very exposed site and providing winter shelter is a problem - plenty of room for something like this within the existing run.

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Kevin67

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Re: Geodesic Hen run - Thoughts and opinions
« Reply #10 on: October 25, 2014, 20:22 »
I've been fascinated by geodesic structures for decades and when I had hens I thought of 2 things:

A Geo/dome can be lengthened into a rectangular geo/dome structure and also some parts of it can be covered with polytunnel plastic to offer sun and rain protection. However, in this instance I would leave a panel open at the 'closed' end to help prevent wind lift.
250m2 grow area + 20' x 10' pt - avid fruit grower
Cheap as chips, diy preferred
Will swap root cuttings etc

"There comes a point where Mother nature just says no, without a lot of electricity." Quote Beesrus



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