DIY Chicken Tunnel (Step-by-Step Guide)

Anne
By Anne August 5, 2016 08:33

DIY Chicken Tunnel (Step-by-Step Guide)

If you don’t have space and your chickens are cooped up in small coop, or even if you need some help gardening, we propose an unusual solution.

A chicken tunnel! It’s very easy to do, your chickens will have extra space to run around, you can move it around your yard, and you’ll have an extra helping hand in the garden, which is always welcome.

Moveable-Chicken-TunnelMaterials needed:

  • materials chicken tunnelFencing stakes
  • Galvanized hardware cloth
  • U-shaped metal or wire supports (optional)
  • Metal or wooden panel (optional)

Tools:

  • Wire cutter
  • Saw
  • Drill

Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1

Map the route for your chicken tunnel while taking into consideration the specifications of your back yard. The easiest way to do it is to let it run along the fence, starting from the coop.

chicken tunnel chickens fenceStep 2

Get the hard wire, and bend it so it will make a little more than half a circle. Then place your hardware along the established route using the fencing stakes to secure it to the ground for long-term use.

Chicken Tunnel Without ChickensStep 3

Attach it to the opening of your coop so that your chickens can have access to the tunnel. Make sure that when you put it next to the chicken coop, it’s bigger than the door.

Moveable-Chicken-Tunnel-ChicksIf you want, you can insert a metal or wooden panel at the entrance of the tunnel that can slide up and down. This will allow you to control the access to the tunnel.

One end of the tunnel should stay opened, and the other end will be closed to prevent the chickens from running away.

garden chicken tunnel

Advantages:

  • chicken tunnel chickensYour chickens can run around without making a mess of your yard or your garden.
  • Chickens make wonderful garden keepers as they eat weeds and pesky bugs.
  • The chickens can dig and peck to prepare the soil for planting seeds.
  • happy workers chicken tunnelThey fertilize the soil.
  • You don’t have to supervise them or worry about predators.
  • You can move it around your yard depending on your needs.
  • The chickens are really cute, especially when they run around in the tunnel.

happy chickens tunnel

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Anne
By Anne August 5, 2016 08:33
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14 Comments

  1. steamboat August 6, 14:28

    Great idea!

    Reply to this comment
  2. susie August 6, 16:51

    You can also move them from bed to bed to mulch and prepare…just toss in a strawbale and they’ll scratch it into mulch in no time, then move them over to another place and start all over. The mulched bad can start with potatoes, just stick them under the mulch and off they’ll grow.

    Reply to this comment
    • diggy August 7, 00:34

      Yes ma’am…lol, this is truly a great idea But the size of the
      “Squares in the fencing” would be better if it were smaller as Too many snakes can inter the 2×4 inch fence squares. I’d look at the rabbit cage squares, then compare prices and find as small a fence hole where the “Price Break” occurs! The possibilities are endless and I’d run a couple
      runs without mixing the type of Birds. This IS way cool &
      your comment has my mind running now…lol, peace

      Reply to this comment
      • Cooltruth August 7, 17:23

        I would use chicken wire for the tunnels. The kind for baby chicks has small openings that wouldn’t let in any snakes big enough to eat your chickens. Little green ones could get in but your chickens would be more likely to eat them than get eaten by them!

        Reply to this comment
        • elm August 11, 14:37

          Chicken wire won’t support itself -use the larger wire and wrap with chicken wire -cost increase though.

          Reply to this comment
        • Pam February 14, 18:46

          Your not building it to keep all predators out, just hawks, perhaps to deter dogs, and to expand their living space creatively for those of us that have county ordinances and neighbors to deal with.

          My tunnels protect my yard from damage from scratching and chicken poop everywhere. I lock my girls up while I’m at work and the tunnels give them access routes to different ‘temporary yards’. I also love them to protect my vegetable garden during the summer since no amount of fencing keeps them off the tomatoes.

          I have about 80-100+ feet of tunnels for them at any given time. I used 14 gauge 2″x4″ welded wire fence in both 4′ and 6 ‘ lengths. Except for some tunnel corners and ends, I cut the rolls into 4’ pieces and let the natural bend to the wire form 80% of the tunnel. I zip tie the length together to make it easy to move them. And thanks to the hens, they stay weed free.

          Reply to this comment
  3. Ch August 10, 04:51

    We used to do that when I was a kid. But we made mazes. We did it to get them back into the coop. We made a large one around all of the chickens then gradually shrank it down until they had to go into the coop. Chasing chickens didn’t work for us.

    Reply to this comment
  4. Lucy March 11, 03:03

    Wow, what fun this idea is! Adaptable, easy, and solves a lot of chicken issues, like being able to regulate whether you just need them to eat the bugs in an area, or want them to clear the ground for planting, too. I love that they can share the same basic area with freedom to run for both the dogs and the chickens, without worrying about raccoons or foxes getting to them too easily! Thanks for this great inspiration.

    Reply to this comment
  5. Grama April 23, 19:05

    I have used chick wire for my tunnel cover, with pvc pipe slipped over pieces of rebar pounded every 4-6 feet into the soil and bent into a arch then slipped over another piece of rebar opposite the first one, to support the tunnel shape. Otherwise, if you have dogs, cts, or wildlife, -even eagles or hawks with access to your garden, they hunting animals will jump onto the chick wire fencing and kill the chickens right through the wire. Been there, done that,

    Reply to this comment
  6. Frank December 30, 01:17

    Great article except that if I’m seeing clearly, there is a photo of the wire being formed into a tunnel shape that includes a floor or bottom which was not mentioned, but is an option and actually a good idea for people who plan to move the tunnel often. The tunnel can be moved and then secured with garden stakes or basically a length of thick wire, re-bar, etc. Or another idea would be a short length of PVC pipe with a hole drilled through it near the top. Then the builder can attach the wire to the pipe with wire, metal rings, and/or even some small carabiners.
    Let me mention that hardware cloth comes in 1/4″ squares and is often labelled as cage wire. Get yourself a crimping tool and some “J-clips” or bands and you can use the same method to build a tunnel as to make cages for rabbits, birds and small pets. You can also get by with a spool of wire, wire cutters and some small pliers to thread, wrap and tighten the wire. I made bird cages with just these few items.
    Personally I like the idea (As mentioned in the article) of creating a frame from light wood or PVC because I think it would be easier to apply the wire to the frame and it would be sturdier and prevent being easily deformed by clumsy humans, curious dogs/cats or hungry predators. If the ends of the tunnel have a frame then they can be matched up and secured as one wishes… like a giant size “habitrail”, but for chickens.

    Reply to this comment
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