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How to Install Chicken Wire

Chicken wire is a very versatile product, used for a range of purposes from chicken coops to plant supports to framing for parade floats and stucco walls. Chicken wire is often sold under the name poultry wire or poultry netting and is very flexible, yet strong. Because it has small enough holes to keep out rodents and other garden pests, chicken wire is very useful for garden fencing and vegetable plant supports.

Build an appropriate frame for whatever purpose you are using your chicken wire. It is easiest to attach chicken wire to wood, so if possible, use that for your framing. If you are building a fence, metal posts are more common because of their ease of use, strength and endurance.

Put on work gloves, unroll 3 or 4 feet of wire and fold the last 3 inches of wire over, making a smooth ending surface with no wires hanging out. If necessary, twist or bend individual wires to get them out of the way. Chicken wire is small, thin wire and is very sharp so use extra care when doing this and be sure to wear gloves.

Attach the chicken wire to a good starting point in your frame or fence. To attach it to wood, use the staple gun or fencing staples and run them along the edge of the chicken wire, about every 6 inches. If using it as fencing, attach the end of the chicken wire to the fence using 6- to 8-inch wire pieces that you have cut from the spool, wrap them around the fence post, through the predrilled holes in the post and around the chicken wire. Twist the ends of the wire at least six times until it is tight around the chicken wire, then bend in the ends to avoid catching on clothing.

Unroll enough chicken wire to move to the next part in your frame or to the next fence post. Slide your fingers (with gloves on) into the holes in the center point of the chicken wire, just past the next fence post, and pull it firmly to stretch the chicken wire across the open area. Attach the chicken wire to this part of the frame or post using the staples or wire pieces. Move your hands down to the edge of the chicken wire and stretch the wire again by pulling away from the center and away from the previous fence post. Attach that section of chicken wire to the post. Continue this process until that fence post or piece of frame is complete, stretching the chicken wire and attaching it to your frame.

Continue attaching the wire to the remaining pieces until you reach the last section. Cut the chicken wire to the desired length plus an additional 3 or 4 inches. Bend over the end of the chicken wire and fold it so that you have a smooth edge and attach the chicken wire to the frame, completing your project.

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