Poultry netting, sometimes referred to as chicken wire, is often used for fencing small animals, as well as poultry. Stretching the wire tight can be a challenge due to the light nature of the wire. With proper efforts, the wire can be properly placed between posts, although a tight stretch with no sagging may not be possible.
Stretching Poultry Netting
Place fence posts at the corners and along the fence line. Corners should be braced to keep the posts straight. The fence line posts should be placed every eight to 10 feet. All posts should be set before the wires are stretched.
Fasten the poultry netting to one of the corner posts. Use fencing staples every six to eight inches to fasten the wire to the post. Roll the poultry netting to the next corner post. In a standard square or rectangular pen the wire will be placed along one side of the enclosure at this point
Place a steel rod through the poultry netting near the location of the corner post where the wire has not been stapled to the post. This rod needs to be strong enough to take the strain of tightening the wire. The rod is woven through the wire on alternate sides of the strands. The intent is for it to spread the strain of the tightening along the entire width of the poultry netting.
Connect the fence stretcher to the corner post and the steel rod. A fence stretcher uses mechanical leverage to move two objects closer together. In this case it will be pulling the steel bar toward the corner post. Use the stretcher to pull the wire tight. This is a judgment call. Poultry netting is light wire and can tear or break if stretched too tight.
Nail the wire to the bracing post in the corner and fasten the wire to all posts along the fence line. Because the wire stretcher is in the way, you will not be able to staple the wire to the corner post until the stretcher is removed. After the stretcher is removed, hand-stretch the wire to the corner post and staple in place. Begin the next run of fencing from that corner post to the next corner. Follow the same procedures, utilizing the steel bar and wire stretcher, to tighten the wire in place. Continue the fencing project around the enclosure.
Poultry netting is strong enough fencing to keep poultry in. It is often not strong enough to keep predators out of the fence. If predators are a concern, the enclosure can be double-fenced by stretching the poultry netting in place and then running a fence of heavier woven wire, such as a 2-by-4-inch, 16-gauge woven wire, over top of the poultry netting. Poultry netting can be used overhead and high on the posts, above the reach of the local predators, to keep the poultry from escaping on the wing.