Thursday, 6 February 2014

Poultry Protection Pen Roofs

A long time ago, before I was seduced by the office with its offers of coffee brought to you and comfy chairs, this humble blogger was a member of the despatch department. Throughout cold winters, wet winters and frankly abominable winters, I shivered my way back and forth outside, with very little sympathy, sending out our lovely chicken coops and wide range of poultry supplies up and down our little island.

Polycarbonate Roofing for a Chicken Run
One of the more popular items that our customers go for during the winter are Protection Pen Roofs. The Flyte so Fancy Poultry Protection Pen is a lightweight structure, popular with many of our customers as a secure chicken run, for keeping out predators, contaminants and wild bird populations, but also especially great for letting your girls roam securely if you're out during the day. Having built a fair share of Protection Pens in my time, they are very simple to put together, merely a case of screwing the flat pack panels together and by the the time you have put the last braces in, you are left with a light and airy, but incredibly sturdy chicken run for your feathered friends, designed to be stable in all this bad weather.

Our Protection Pens are made from 38mm x 38mm pressure treated timber for the frames, and completely wired in inch by half inch plastic-coated galvanised weldmesh. Onto this rigid framework is the option to add the Polycarbonate Roofing. We have avoided using PVC sheets as they are too easily ripped off, polytunnels get too hot in summer, plywood is too heavy and we think Onduline is just too dark altogether. 

Weather Protection for a Poultry Protection PenA solid transparent UV stable barrier, the polycarbonate roofing is a great addition. Fixed to the mesh panels of the roof, carefully via polypins (it can be removed at a later date if wished) with the included tube of silicone you can fill in between the panels, providing the most secure roof possible. If the roof is ordered at the same time as the chicken run, then we will attach them for you ready to go, however they are extremely easy to add at a later date. 

There are several advantages to the Protection Pen roofing. Firstly, with the biblical levels of rain falling this winter, providing a dry area in your run will be much appreciated by your chickens looking for somewhere to stay out of the weather. It will also help keep the ground of the run drier too and help prevent an inevitable mud bath, more suited for hippos than chickens. The inch by half inch size of the weldmesh stops wild birds getting into the run, but the roof also provides a solid barrier that will stop wild birds contaminating your feeders and drinkers when they fly above, always a bonus. 

Considering the vagaries of the British climate and reminding you that the Protection Pen is a lightweight structure, we advise that you should not allow heavy snow to accumulate on the roof. This weight can severely compromise the structural integrity of the protection pen. 

Of course you don't need to cover the whole of the roof of your pen either. Whether its just a corner or perhaps half the unit, the advantages of a polycarbonate roof are incredibly beneficial and useful to chicken keepers. 

So, while I might look back at my years in the howling wind and lashing rain from the warm comfort of an ergonomic office chair with shallow regret, the Protection Pen and it's protective roof is always something I would recommend for these cold, wet British winters.

Thanks for Reading

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