How to Cut Chicken Wire (An Easy Method Guide)

While raising chickens I found myself expanding quickly. As my chickens grew in numbers so did their housing requirements and I had to learn how to cut chicken wire myself, it wasn’t as hard as I thought.

In general, to cut chicken wire follow these steps; unroll your chicken wire to make it easier to cut while determining which section to cut. Calculate the appropriate size of the cut and cut it separately to ensure it is done securely and precisely.

Now, if you are still curious, let me walk you through the process:

What You Need

different wire cutters

Normally, we use any wire cutter that we have to cut chicken wire. However, not using the right cutter for a specific wire size you want to cut may be difficult. Thus, we must consider the best tool to use when cutting.

  • Long-nose pliers: for thin and tiny chicken wire
  • Tin shears: for medium-sized chicken wire
  • Diagonal cutting pliers: for any chicken wire size
  • Safety glasses 
  • Gloves and work jeans to avoid scratches

Cutting Your Chicken Wire in 3+ Steps

Step 1. Lay Your Chicken Wire Down

After deciding which type of wire cutter you will use, the next thing to do is to unroll the full length of your chicken wire mesh fencing to the appropriate length.

It is preferable to have someone assist in holding the open end, or secure one end of the chicken wire to one of the stakes with twist wire ties. Otherwise, the chicken mesh will revert to its old state.

Step 2. Identify or Mark the Cutting Area

After unrolling the full length of your chicken wire mesh fencing to your desired length, choose a line in which you would prefer to do the cuts. You may mark it with a marker as a guide to indicate which line to cut wire.

After marking, properly hold the wire and prepare to cut the chicken wire mesh.

Step 3. Determine the Size of the Cuts

showing the size of the cut
Video | Rick Larson

Step 3.1. To attach chicken wire to both ends properly, ensure that you cut one side longer than the opposite side. This is an essential tip to ensure that when you attach chicken wire into a circle, they will not detach from each other. 

Rick Larson cutting wires
Video | Rick Larson

Step 3.2. As soon as you determine the size, the next thing you need to do is to cut the chicken wire. You must snap the strands individually all the way through.

To avoid any damage, pull the detached part aside with one of your hands as you continue to cut the wire through.

Step 3.3. To form a circle with your chicken wire mesh, attach the chicken wire to both ends. Then, twist the wires around each other.

Ensure that the longer cut wire is twisted properly around the other opposite ends for safety. This trick will keep you from scratching or cutting with the chicken wire.

The cleaner the twists, the safer it is.

Tips for Cutting a Chicken Wire

To successfully build a chicken wire fence, you need to have the right grip in cutting through the mesh wire. Below are the methods I tried to do this task with ease.

1. Make sure your instruments are clean, sharp, and still working.

Your tool may not cut the chicken wire smoothly if the blade is dull. Also, before you begin, wipe your tool with a clean towel because if the tools are unclean, your hands may slip while cutting. Furthermore, Oil improves the hinge’s performance over time. Thus, applying oil to your tool every 1-3 weeks is advisable to keep it in good shape. (1, 2)

2. Grip your tool’s handle tightly and securely.

Hold the pliers with your dominant hand, your thumb on one end of the handle and your other fingers on the other. This allows you to better control the tool as you snip. You may slide and damage the wire when you handle the tool wrong.

3. Cut your chicken wire with gentle but firm pressure.

Avoid shaking your tool from side to side or twisting the wire. When you cut the chicken wire with too much force, it will bend and damage your chicken wire. If one snip does not entirely cut the wire, open the handle of your wire cutter and make another right-angle cut.

Take a look at some of our related articles below.

(1) chicken –
(2) oil –

Video References

Through Our Eyes

Rick Larson

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About Sam Orlovsky

b1d87d2ee85af3e51479df87928bdc88?s=90&d=mm&r=gCertifications: B.E.E.
Education: University Of Denver - Electric Engineering
Lives In: Denver Colorado

Electrical engineering is my passion, and I’ve been in the industry for over 20 years. This gives me a unique ability to give you expert home improvement and DIY recommendations. I’m not only an electrician, but I also like machinery and anything to do with carpentry. One of my career paths started as a general handyman, so I also have a lot of experience with home improvement I love to share.

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