Posted by Michelle Goodwin on Sat, Nov 21, 2015


The turkey is a majestic and friendly bird that anyone can raise and own. They forage well and take up very little room.

Though many "experts" recommend that turkeys be raised seperate from chickens, many backyard flocks raise turkeys alongside their flocks of chickens, bantams, ducks and geese.ul and helpful in controlling a variety of pests, turkeys are easy to raise and fun to watch. Turkeys can be a profitable addition to a large to small farmstead.

Also gaining recent popularity is the desire for the small urban farm youtr own backyard. 

People typically raise turkeys for meat, although some people like to keep a Tom (a mature male turkey) around as a pet.

Before you decide to add turkeys to your country or urban farmstead, here are the basics on raising them the right way.


In an Eggshell: What Turkeys Require for Home Enclosure Needs.


First you need to ask yourself, Are turkeys right for my rural or urban farm? Turkeys require a different setup as far as housing and pasture from laying hens. They like to be outdoors regardless of the weather, although they do need to be eight to twelve weeks of age before they can safely be on pasture. 

If you've raised chickens for eggs or meat, turkeys are similar-but they require a bit more babying, especially as poults (young turkeys). They are also very social with humans, much more so than chickens, so you'll need to be willing to spend some time with your birds every day.

Before then, they should be kept in a brooder, perhaps with access to a fenced in sun porch. 



  • Safety & protection from predators

  • Places to dust bathe

  • Wood or metal roosts to fly into at night

  • Access to range with other livestock

  • A safe, durable and weather resistant fence system

As a general rule of thumb: 5 by 8 foot roost will house about 20 turkeys.

*Please keep in mind that urban farm foul laws vary from city to city in the United States. Recent laws have made it easier for residents to raise backyard foul and many citizens are taking advantage of the opportunity for fresh eggs and meat and a closer connection to their food supply. If you are interested in following this trend with your very own flock, it's important to understand the legal basics in your community. 

Fencing and Housing for Your Turkeys

Wood is an ideal construction material for a roost or a pen fence, and electical conduit can also be used as extra turkey security on top the wooden posts to keep the pen lightweight and easily movable.  If the roost or turkey tractor is very lightweight, it may need to be staked down so it doesn't blow over or away.

For temporary fencing, you can use electric poultry netting. If you want to build a more permanent enclosure, your farm fence should be as high as possible - at least four feet - given that these birds can and will fly

Wooden fencing structures are tried and true not only for the livestock's protection but also to provide more organic and natural farm aethetic. The wood fence can be topped with netting, to further enforce security and prevent escape. 

Woven wire fencing is another good option and is made of smooth wire horizontally, held together by vertical wires or "stays." The horizontal spacing is closer toward the bottom and wider at the top. It is held in place with wood posts or metal T-posts. Woven wire fencing is ideal permanent fencing for goats, sheep, pigs and poultry. Because these animals can squeeze through larger-spaced wires, or dig under or climb over other fences, woven wire is often chosen to keep them contained. Some farmers use it for horses as well.

The fencing should always be flush to the ground and sturdy so that the turkeys are protected from predators such as fox, raccoons, weasels and neighborhood dogs. You can also trim the wing of their feathers of rogue flyers, as most turkeys will probably stay in the fenced in pen happily unless something disturbs them.

Turkeys can be turned out onto pasture with cattle if you are enclosing a rural farmstead. They will scratch and pick corn and other undigested grains out of their fellow livestock's feed in order to spread nutrients and improve the biologic quality of the pasture.

They will also eat pest weeds such as nettles, dock, and chicory which aids in nurturing pasture as well.

Thus far, recommendations for simple movable root structures and fenced in pens assume you are raising spring turkeys that will be slaughtered for meat at around 28 weeks of age, and thus you don't need winter housing or separate gated or fenced in spots for toms and hens to guard and sit on their eggs. A fenced in pen with solid sides makes a good space for a broody hen to hatch out poults. This can be within the large or small turkey roosts.


turkey farm hurricane fence turkey farm fence

Reaping the Rewards of a Small Turkey Farm 

woven wire

Raising friendly, handsome turkeys for your family's use is both fun and worthwhile. If you raise them to eat, you'll have a much more wholesome and flavorful turkey than anything you could buy at the supermarket. Several of the old heritage breeds are still available, as well as the modern broad-breasted whites.Raising and housing turkeys has been gaining momentum. At the 2010 American Poultry Association National Poultry Show in Shawnee, Oklahoma, there were over 4500 birds shown. Of those 4500 birds, less than 60 were Turkeys. At the 2012 convention of the same name there were over 140 turkeys!
turkey fence fig05

One of our country's founding father's Benjamin Franklin is notorious for his very public opinion on the tukey as America's first national bird. In letter to his daughter, Franklin wrote:

   "For my own part I wish the Eagle had not been chosen the representative of our country. He is a is a bird of bad moral character. He does not get his Living honestly. You may have seen h  perched on some dead tree near the river, where, too lazy to fish for himself, he watches the labor of the Fishing Hawk; and when that diligent Bird has at length taken a fish, and is bearing it to his nest for the support of his mate and young ones, the Eagle pursues him and takes it from him."

Topics: Fence, hoa fence, wooden fence, farm fencing, security fence, farm fence, thanksgiving fence

How to get HOA approval for the fence you want.

Posted by Michelle Goodwin on Thu, Feb 12, 2015

trex fencing, hurricane fence, richmond fences, hoa regulations, hoa fence approval, fences hoa fences, fences richmond, fences norfolk, hoa fences

The rise of Homeowner Associations in recent years has seen exponential growth. Before you rush out to install the fence of your dreams, here are some tips of the trade from a Residential fence expert on the possible pitfalls of building that beautiful new fence installation.

One of the biggest mistakes homeowners can make when installing a fence is not checking to see what the by-laws of their Homeowners Association (HOA) require.

You can't assume that what your neighbors have previously done with their fence and yard complies with your particular HOA regulations.

Even though a neighbor might have an admirable fence enclosure or gate doesn't mean doesn't mean that your HOA approved that particular fence installation.

We can recall a particular job where a customer scheduled an install for a chain link fence, and as it was in progress, the customer panicked as the HOA just informed her that absolutely no chain link was allowed in their community. Several adjacent yards that had previously used chain link enclosures prior to her request were ordered to remove them and seek other fence options. It turns out that residents were only approved to have vinyl and ornamental aluminum installed in that neighborhood. 

In another instance, a customer submitted her information to the HOA weeks in advance. Due to the fact that she had not heard from the HOA, she assumed that the fence was approved. So, she went forward with the installation. The HOA later stated that they never received her request. The customer then was ordered to redo her fence structure according to her neighborhood's HOA standards, and have the style she selected approved by them.

Typically, a HOA can take anywhere from one week to six weeks to approve your fence project. Generally speaking, you have to to get the HOA's approval whenever you do anything to the exterior of your residence. This can even include painting and landscaping.


Many HOA ordinances and rules prevent you from constructing chain link, split rail, or wire containment fences because they are not aesthetically appealing. If you install a fence without HOA approval, you can almost be sure you will have to tear it down or face serious fines, as well as aggravation and time consumption.



     Read the regulations provided by the HOA thoroughly. Make sure that you have the most updated version. Call the HOA president or another board member with all questions you have regarding the specific regulations. Document the date and time of call, the name of the person with whom you spoke with, as well as what was said during the conversation.

2.     Make notes on what you want to communicate in your letter to the HOA. In your correspondence try to anticipate any questions the HOA board may have about your project. Always include possible solutions to any problem you think the board may have with your planned project.

3.     Enclose blueprints, pictures and project drawings. Also, be sure to include the specific dimensions of your project and any other pertinent details in your letter. Include images or colors of the materials you will be using. Be clear and precise so your letter will be easily understood.

4.     Make copies of your letter to keep for your records. Mail your request to the homeowners association. Be sure you have included the best ways for members to contact you, such as giving them both a home and work telephone number.

5.     Follow up on your letter if you are not contacted within a week after mailing. Confirm your letter has been received and ask for a date by which the board will render a decision on the plans for your property.

6.     Appeal for a variance if your request is denied and you still want to pursue your plans. An appeal hearing may then be scheduled during which you can present your case to the entire board. You can enlist the support of your neighbors to help bolster your argument.

Be sure to get the approval of the HOA first. It is not up to the fence contractor to find out the rules and regulations or to get approval of the HOA for your project. That being said, a longstanding and professional fence company will gladly help advise you in this process and should go out of their way to help you with your installation concerns.  

They can also supply you with fence samples and pictures of existing installations to help you get the approval of the HOA before starting construction so you won't be on the fence with your Home Owners Association.




Topics: Specifications, Residential Fence Choices, Homeowners Association, HOA, Residential Fence, backyard Fence, Fence Permit, Regulations, Insurance, Richmond Fence, fence law, fence regulations, virginia fence code, Maintenance, fences richmond, first time home buyers, codes, hoa fence, fence insurance

What Is A Good Looking Picket Fence Material?

Posted by Dawn Lowndes on Wed, Mar 06, 2013

pickett fence

The iconic white picket fence is an integral part of the “American Dream”: home ownership, 2.3 children, and a lush green yard with a picket fence. Picket fences are typically made of wooden boards – painted white or whitewashed – but they can also be made out of vinyl (polyvinyl chloride, or 'PVC').

vinyl pickett fence


Vinyl fencing is lower-maintenance than traditional wood, and illustrates an updated look. If your picket fence looks to stark against the garden, you can weave flowers and vines throughout the slats in the fence for a more charming and aesthetically-pleasing look.


How are picket fences constructed?

pickett arbor

Several pickets (or boards) stand vertically with a one inch or two inch space in between each board and are connected with two or three horizontal slabs. This type of fencing usually defines domestic boundaries and is an aesthetically pleasing way to protect children and pets without obstructing views. Residential picket fencing is charming in a backyard or garden setting as well. They also look great when paired with a matching arbor and/or gate. Picket fences stand three feet to four feet tall. Because they are relatively short and transparent, they are not very useful as privacy fences.


Four foot wood concave and convex picket fences (shown above) with gothic-style posts is one of the best-selling residential fence types. This fence is very popular in subdivisions that have HOA/ARC requirements. The Architectural Review Committee (ARC) and the Home Owners Association (HOA) have certain requirements regarding residential fencing in certain subdivision communities. These design boards want to maintain a fence aesthetic that will “protect, maintain and enhance the value of the property, as well as the lives and lifestyles of their residents”. The concave and convex picket fences are perfect in a neighborhood setting because these fences look great on either side. The concave or convex picket fence is 4-feet tall and has gothic or flat style posts.


fence post styles

The gothic fence posts are sturdy, square posts that come to a point on the top – almost like a spade or arrowhead shape. Flat posts simply cap the top of fence posts (some look like a very flat pyramid, sometimes made of wood, copper, or another metal) . The posts we use are 4 x 4 inches or 6 x 6 inches for gates. The convex – or 'arched – fence pickets rises to a crest in the middle of each post. On the other hand, the concave – or 'dipped' – fence pickets sink under in the middle between each post. We use 2 x 4 foot rails and 1 x 4 foot pickets for each fence. We also use double dipped ring shanked galvanized nails and 60 to 80 lbs bags of concrete per post which makes for great durability and minimal required maintenance.

Concave, convex, or traditional picket fence costs about $12.00 to $16.00 per foot. The most common colors for these fences are white and natural wood (almond). The use of # 2 pressure treated pine (PTP) and red cedar pickets is common. as well.  

Article Contributed by Richard Belcher

Topics: Fence Design, Homeowners Association, HOA, Residential Fence, backyard Fence, Fence, pickett fence, vinyl pickett fence, hoa fence, wooden fence, white pickett fence

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