The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Temporary poultry pasture fence experiment

new experimental temporary chick pasture set up

It only took Anna and me about 20 minutes to set up 100 feet of the experimental, temporary chick fencing this morning.

The soft, plastic green material was a dream to handle compared to the hard, metal chicken wire.

I've got a feeling this new temporary chicken fencing method is going to become part of our future pasturing poultry routine.

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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I just pulled out a bunch of this at my forest in Oregon. Granted it was 7 or 8 years old. The previous owners used it to fence about an acre chicken pasture/orchard (yes, they had the chicken pasture double as the orchard - wonder what would happen to all of the soft fruit.) They also used it as deer fencing around the main garden. I ripped out part of the old orchard fencing to make a more manageable (smaller than an acre) chicken pasture. I learned that the stuff serious erodes in sunlight as there were many holes and trying to patch just didn't work. It also wasn't 'city dog' proof as one of my girls went right through the fence to attack a guinea. We now have a proper hinged wire fence and have attached chicken wire along the bottom and outward 2 feet to deter any digging.
Comment by Charity Tue Sep 13 12:25:38 2011

I definitely wouldn't advocate using this fencing in a permanent location or expect it to last too long. However, we've been using the same pieces for three or four years as pea trellises and have seen absolutely no degradation yet. The trick to longevity seems to be taking it in as soon as you're done, which limits the trellis material's exposure to nature.

I also wouldn't expect it to keep any animals out (especially not deer?!) I'm sure Lucy could go right through it, but she's pretty well trained that chicken areas are off limits.

The big plus of this stuff is that it doesn't kink up and it doesn't scratch you to pieces --- both of which are great assets if you're using it in temporary locations and taking it down and putting it up a lot.

A chicken pasture/orchard can work really well, I believe, as long as you have places to rotate the chickens during other seasons. I wish we could run our chickens under the peach trees at certain times of the year to cut down on bad pest insects!

Comment by anna Tue Sep 13 13:30:40 2011
I generally dislike things made of plastic, but I love this stuff! We have so many "chicken-exclusion-zones" in our quarter acre yard, and this fencing works great. Visually, it blends into the landscape, and keeps the chickens (mostly) out of the gardens. You can also fold it in half to make shorter fence.
Comment by Paula B. Wed Sep 14 19:44:01 2011
I know what you mean --- I'm not a big fan of plastic either, but this stuff is so useful! It's easy to cut, too, so you can make shorter trellis sections, quick screened gates, etc.
Comment by anna Wed Sep 14 20:04:29 2011

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