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Probably more…Would that floor be ok to protect my chickns? Add an automatic coop door so your chickens are safe at night To keep them safe from predators, the run should be at least 8 feet high, and made of hardware cloth or chicken wire. Keep up the good work. Once you spend the money doing it right the first time you are home safe and sound for the future with little worries. The coop apron is a lot easier than digging straight down, 12 to 18 inches, and trying to bury the fencing material into the ground. My coupe is made up of a 10ft chain-link fence buried 3″ in the ground with concrete poured in the trench.. but a coon still managed to get in by opening the door.. my door is spring loaded and they still got in… killed my big rooster!.. Mar 6, 2017 - Explore Ann White's board "chicken apron" on Pinterest. Necropsies of chickens don’t always show the cause of death. For a predator-proof pen, you will need to use either ½” or 1” welded wire fencing. I’m pinning 🙂 You mention some precautions about wooden floors for a coup, but we have a concrete floor. Key features of all Lonestar Coops plans: Predator proofing is the starting point of all of our designs Tons of ventilation for healthy chickens, with large windows on all four sides of the hen-house Plexiglas storm windows to close up the henhouse during the cold winters If a racoon puts fingers through, there’s now an extra 1/2 inch of air between the two screens before anything is touched. We’ve had evidence of multiple attempts on our young girls’ lives at night! Animals, especially clever predators, quickly learn that all those voices aren’t really there, probably because they expect to smell multiple people in association with the different voices, but they don’t. And if I were to use regular hardware mesh on the top, will it rust over time because of the weather? Since there is no way a predator can enter the henhouse, a door is unnecessary. It’s worth rising … Pingback: HH is Getting Ducklings! I was working on my coop, chickens started running to the other side of the run, I started looking for a hawk. Cover windows with hardware cloth. I am looking to get chickens and a couple of goats. Often, though, hawks and other animals eventually learn to work around those sorts of deterrence measures, so keep your eyes peeled! I decided to take a chance on this working on the door for the bear. What are your suggestions for a predator proof chicken run? There were feathers and blood left behind but no idea what took it. Secure the hardware cloth with screws and washers, and space them closely enough to keep openings less than 1/2 inch. we like to encourage wild birds and want to free range as much as possible but today a hawk took the miniature rooster. In Toronto where we are piloting piloting backyard chickens. Don’t skimp by using chicken wire on top. You want your fencing material to be at least 24 inches, but I used 36 inches. "The Polka" Our 6' X 12' Coop . For making a coop apron, you will need hardware cloth or fencing that has very small holes and is placed on the ground around the coop. They are rectangles of pressure treated wood covered with chicken wire. Some chicken keepers—including yours truly—prefer to use hardware cloth as the mesh on outdoor runs, creating a predator-proof outdoor space. To prevent them from being able to do that, wire meshing is also placed around the perimeter. When a predator like a … We have no wolves or bears this far South. My vet suspects a hawk flew nearby and even though he couldn’t physically harm them, he terrified them to the point of heart attack! OK, So we have a small shed that has become the chicken coop since the bears shredded our cute chicken coop. I pulled out a wooden perch and smacked it up against the dog pen! Southern Chicken Coops, Quality Homes for your Hens . The city has a ton of racoons. MAIN MENU. It was probably warmer out there, then in the house with the heat lamp. HI Christine, so sorry for your loss! Forgetting doesn’t sound irresponsible at all, it just sounds like forgetting. It’s worth rising to that challenge, however, and it’s not difficult if you understand what you’re up against. It doesn’t matter what it’s made of, as long as the animals cannot dig through it, and as long as it won’t decay in the soil. We're glad you took time to visit our site and we invite you to contact Carolina Coops for detailed information or answers to your questions. Thanks for this site. I’m working on the pavers around the coop right now. If you have the inclination and time for training a livestock guardian animal, that may be the way to go. I pray to God that I have done this right because I certainly could not go through that heartache again! For runs and coop with dirt floor: Bury hardware cloth 2 feet down, and/or place a skirt of hardware cloth 2 feet out. The floor is wood, and I check it on a regular basis, That being said, I am getting ready to put linoleum down on the floor, And I was wondering, If I took the wood floor up, I have extra chainlink fence, If I buried that and maybe cris/crossed it so the holes were small, or did chicken wire wrapped around the fence? We’re excited and nervous st the same time. I have been doing this for about a week now. We keep the feeder in the coop even while chickens range outdoors. It looks like they are trying to use them as an apron/wall of sorts also. Chicken wire is more for keeping your chickens in than keeping predators out. This video is about Predator Apron and how to install it so predators can not dig under your coop and get inside to your chickens. Teaching chickens to return to the coop at night is best done from the … I’m planning to raise chickens next spring, reading these posts made me realize that the moving/ sled type of coop won’t be secure for my birds. Deter both clever opportunists with a padlock. Thanks for your article. Well yesterday a rat snake somehow got into the screened porch and through the chicken wire and got two of my four chicks. Saturday night raccoons bent back some of the hardware cloth near the roof on the back of the coop and ate all five chicks (I found the remains in the morning). You need to deter animals that dig, climb, or fly. My 4 adult chickens have been safe so far, but these were teeny tiny and I was trying to keep them extra safe. If you live in bear country, you’ll need electric wires around your chicken coop and runs, because bears can demolish sturdy structures, if the reward is a chicken dinner. To prevent them from being able to do that, wire meshing is also placed around the perimeter. Listen To The Article. In my opinion, the rooster’s ability to protect the flock is way overestimated. When the badger or raccoon tries to dig under the coop's fence, they encounter a barrier that keeps them from breaking in. I thought our coop was predator proof (buried chicken wire, totally enclosed), but raccoons are crafty and persistent. My little dog is actually very friendly with our chickens and will even go in their coop when I’m feeding. This is a custom chicken coop, photos above show one of several set up configurations. May 16, 2018 - Chicken_Apron_or_Hen_Saddle_Pattern_-_WeAllSew_121314 We still love our predators though. Written by: JD Lara How-To 9 Comments Print This Article. The pen is a 20’ x 10’ dog run pen. Pingback: What To Raise On Your Homestead or Backyard Farm - One Acre Farm, Pingback: Limited Free Range Chickens: 12 Tips to Balance Freedom & Safety - One Acre Farm. Here's how to keep the predators out by making predator proof chicken coops. This website also participates in partner programs with CJ, ShareASale, Awin, Impact, and other sites. Leave them out, and you might wake up to grisly remains, or to nothing at all. I feel so guilty for what they all must have gone through. Next Last ••• More options Who Replied? Then out of the corner of my eye I see a dog, wait, thats a coyote. Welcome to Southern Chicken Coops! Predator Guard introduces a pair of flashing red lights that animals assume is a set of eyes. Other than using the 90 degree apron method and also putting 1×1 cement pavers on top what else can we do to keep the diggers out? I’ve seen bears try to gain access at night and in the day when the fence was off. Once their feet step on a nail or screw they give up. Skunks,racoons, woodchucks,I am sure there are foxes and I have seen coyotes and hawks. Required fields are marked *. perches many things to think about. Problem solved! Hi Jodi, so sorry you lost your chickens! I know your post was a while ago but I had to respond. It scares them and makes them stay away from your yard. Welcome to Southern Chicken Coops! I never knew they were so vulnerable. I noticed that we didn’t have hawk issues afterwards. The boards will rot and have to be replaced eventually, but I get 2 to 4 years out of one depending on how thick the plywood is. Chicken wire is not adequate. My power company reader found the trick though, she gives her treats and she loves her. Nature’s wildlife is hungry. Raccoons use their nimble fingers to open simple locks and marauding humans do the same. Thank you for your post.It was really helpful. However, it seems to me that a bear or even a family of coyotes would be content to make a meal of the geese. I thought they used 2X4 wire for the predator apron. I know one person who was successful for several years with a pair of geese as the only guard animals for an otherwise poorly protected coop. Do I need one egg box per chicken? Lauren Arcuri. It will rust over time, but very slowly. Do Chickens Sleep in Their Nesting Boxes? An apron isn’t as effective as a trench, but will provide some measure of security from digging beasties. I built my coop on the ground and I believe my chickens dug a bit around the door and the marten got under it and when I woke up in the morning they had all been slautered. In winter they have a heat lamp even if they don’t need it its there for them in the corner. (Image source: Buildcheapchickencoops) Foxes, coyotes, weasels, raccoons, rats and hawks. Back down to the ground to do some dirt work and prepare to install what’s called the predator apron. Keeping backyard chickens is a wonderful way to grow some of your own food and learn about animal behavior, but it does present the flock master with a few challenges. Thank you so much for your thorough information. If you are not yet familiar with them, you might want to check out my previous post on Poultry Predator Identification, where their tracks, scat, and behaviors are discussed. I can’t recommend this enough. First and foremost: Never, never use chicken wire on your chicken coop and run. We thought we’d finally gotten the predator situation under control this late winter. If there is no top, birds of prey will continue to get in. I could go many feet inside. We use green PVC coated 16 gauge steel welded wire rolled fencing that is 2 foot wide with 2” x 3” rectangular mesh opening. Thanks in advance for all your help! Hi Janet — thanks so much for sharing Predator Friendly and Wildlife Friendly practices with the world — the world needs more, much more, of this!! I know this has nothing to do with animals digging under your coop, but since you came to this post and obviously have a predator problem, I thought I would mention it so that you can keep your chickens safe! I personally don’t use chicken wire to protect the chicken coop and run because predators can easily tear through it. But will have to add some fence to the dog kennel for the chickens. I’ve seen 1 foot quoted as sufficient for a skirt or underground fence, but I think that’s borderline sufficient. Interesting — we used the same set-up for our rabbits years ago. Hanging the feeders will prevent mice and rats from accessing the feed meant for chickens. My Aunt had a large coop with a huge run she enclosed the whole thing with a pig pen so you have to go through the pigs to get into the chicken yard she never lost any chickens ! Electric Net … If I were to dig deep in the ground and bury cinder blocks around the perimeter of the bottom of the coop would that help or is it better to bury hard wear cloth in the ground around the bottom. Did she eat something too large to pass while outside, and would she not have done so if I had kept them in the brooder for that hour?? Someone’s digging, trying to get in under the base! Since four of the roosters turned out to be hens, we are trying to ready a Runnings coop for the winter. It’s okay to alter them for your needs. If you’re in a cold winter area, a run without a roof will fill with snow, and won’t be useful to the chickens in winter, so don’t include that in the square footage. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate program designed to provide a means for websites to earn fees by advertising and linking to It is about 10x15 in size. I bought a really cute but basic coop from Tractor Supply and staple-gunned additional 1/2 inch hardware cloth panels onto the outside, covering the hardware cloth that had been stapled from the inside. Votes: 1 25.0% Total voters 4 ••• More options Who Replied? They could not find the cause of death. They’re clever as heck, and their front paws are like tiny human hands. It is not cheap to keep them safe by any means. A padlock might be overkill for a racco0n, but I’ve read enough stories about people stealing chickens. If you choose not to elevate, then don’t bother with wood flooring. I see some people will use logs or cement pavers around their chicken runs also. Any advice or suggestions on how to predator proof this pen? It scares them and makes them stay away from your yard. Reinforcement to exclude weasels was definitely a good idea. I hope this post about how to keep predators from digging under your chicken coop helped you out! She didn’t say chicken wire; she said chain link. 4. Predator-Proof Chicken Coops? I have a one acre farm. However, diggers won’t know they can’t get in until after they’ve created a tunnel that goes under the coop, which means they could be hanging around your coop a lot longer than if you had a wide skirt outside the perimeter. Perhaps most predators don’t dig as enthusiastically as rabbits, but I wouldn’t want to chance it. Yes I thought it was rather strange myself! Pictures would be helpful. 4. If you don’t know what a coop apron is, definitely watch the video below (or keep reading). If you’re going to make an apron, you have to pay close attention to the corners where you attach the fencing material together (the seam). When the apron eventually rusts, she's planning to just replace that separate apron, without having to disassemble the entire fence. You could also be like me that for a long time, I would run to scan the backyard everytime the security light is triggered with a flashlight, armed with wasp spray. Give us a call at 919-794-3989 or reach out through our contact page and we'll be delighted to help! We are, and we recently became Certified Predator Friendly. I spoke with a falconer and he suggested that the glare from the sunlight reflecting off the lights was enough to interfere with her ability to see clearly into our yard. I will also not put another chick on the porch without me sitting out there with them. I raise bees in the front and have had raccoons and bears get into those early on. MAIN MENU. Bought a coop as requirements are 10ft per chicken, with run. It is readily available at Lowes (item #44380) and other hardware stores. My husband and I are new’ish to small scale farming and becoming more self-sustainable. I am heartbroken. Right now I have five 2.5 week old chicks, and know what you mean by heart broken – I would be too. Did you know they make automatic pop door openers where you can set the time for them to open and close? OH, Janet, I am so glad this is helpful. Your email address will not be published. Would that be sufficient to protect underneath them? Predators like raccoons, foxes, owls, even neighborhood dogs are known to attack backyard chickens at night or in plain daylight. 4. Thread starter #1 RoyalChick Crowing. The bonus here is that when the sun hits that metal sheeting – it reflects dramatic flashes – up at the hawks that are occasionally circling the area in the daytime. Use half inch hardware cloth not just for the sides. Anyone have any other suggestions? I’m in the process of predator proofing now, We have 3 chicken hawks and a vulture..yes a vulture who is constantly stalking my birds, they already killed one of my neighbors hens, Her dog guards the chickens, but she was eating at the time, She killed one hawk,but not before it killed her hen. Dec 24, 2019. I use terracotta outdoor tiles in the floor of my run its easy to clean and doesn’t break down. For some reason, predators love to start digging in the corners. To deter digging predators, dig a 12” trench all the way around the perimeter of the coop and bury the hardware cloth. Wow, your set up sound just like ours. You need to provide some sort of barrier to digging. At night, we put the big limestone rocks in front of the doors as well and cover the locked latches with those. Don’t forget to top the run with 1/2 inch hardware cloth! Predators abound in and around a homestead, and they’re all after your chickens. I lined the door edge with a nice thick layer of habanero oil. Then have a 6 wire electric fence around the outside of the nail boards that i turn on at night. Planting Garlic. We never saw any evidence of predator visits. Make sure there are no cracks or holes in the flooring or where the floor meets the walls of the coop. Homestead Chicken Resources, The Truth About Trapping: An Honest Look at a Controversial Topic -, How to Predator Proof Your Chicken Coop and Run  — Info You Should Know, Hens On The Homestead: 6 Questions You Need To Answer Before You Get Chickens | Little Farm in the Alberta Foothills, Precision Old Red Barn Chicken Coop Review - Misfit Gardening. Though we’ve never lost a girl to a predator, we’ve lived in the city until a few months ago. Chicken killers will come knocking on the walls to get in and can’t, they will try and dig under the walls. I didn’t put them in the coop or the run yet because I was worried about something getting in. They certainly never mentioned anything about using small .5 X .5 hardware mesh. Not all of them are inclined to try. View all posts by, Guide to Designing the Perfect Chicken Coop - One Acre Farm, Predator Proof Your Chicken Coop And Run | Homestead & Survival, What To Raise On Your Homestead or Backyard Farm - One Acre Farm, Limited Free Range Chickens: 12 Tips to Balance Freedom & Safety - One Acre Farm, Chickenpalooza! Pingback: The Truth About Trapping: An Honest Look at a Controversial Topic -. I could also do a minimal barrier outside as well. Thread starter #1 Gertie Greenbriar In the Brooder. Keeping backyard chickens is a wonderful way to grow some of your own food and learn about animal behavior, but it does present the flock master with a few challenges. Because our runs are predator proof, our chickens always have access to them…and we sleep easily. No fear, well I could have killed him, but i didn’t, I shot the ground in front of him throwing dirt all over and he ran with a purpose. I have also learned much from other people’s builds. The different voices sound like people are in the area, and we have not had a problem in 2 years. We added electric wires last year. 12 noon standing 10 feet from me. One Acre Farm is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertizing program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to I had a lot of trouble with raccoons in my yard and this little gadget fixed that problem! Another impressive thing is the DIY chicken feeder which will make feeding the chicken a piece of cake. Thank you, Anna, I’m glad you appreciated the post. Welcome to Southern Chicken Coops! Outdoor pens need to be screened well. You might want to go with 1/4 inch for baby chick housing, but larger chickens would probably eat anything that could fit through 1/2 inch openings. I have mostly trash pandas and between my spikes or wasp spray when I’m around, they hesitantly visit my coop. Click here for my full affiliate disclosure. Weasels can climb, and many of them can squeeze through 1 inch openings. I’d go with a large dog. – Hardesty Haus. She babies all the baby animals and my grandkids. Learn to train them to come when called from a previous post here. Foxes are persistent…and intelligent. She’s never offered to bite anything but the bear that came through and she sent him packing. Sort by reaction score Thread starter RoyalChick; Start date Dec 24, 2019; Tags predator proofing; 1; 2; Next. Boy, was I wrong. Choose chicken coop plans that allow at least 10 square feet of space per chicken. You’ll read this a lot of Backyard Chickens forum, too, that necropsy failed to determine the cause of death. However, her mom tries to chase them constantly so I have to keep her out of the coop for security reasons. Learn how your comment data is processed. They’re very cheap to replace here also so it wouldn’t be a huge loss. Julie Stein, co-founder and ed, Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network. Chickens are so awesome, even the raccoons want some. (adsbygoogle=window.adsbygoogle||[]).push({}). Lauren Arcuri is a freelance writer and an experienced small farmer. How is it built properly? Bury it or put an Apron on It To deter digging predators, dig a 12″ trench all the way around the perimeter of the coop, burying the hardware cloth. Go. Thank you for the information you have provided and we may change the latches on the hen house doors (they are simple slide bolts that I think a raccoon may be able to open if they can get into the coop). Hello, I love all wild life and know it is my fault I didn’t keep her safe please any ideas. This is the best way to deter diggers including dogs, rats, coyotes and fox. We are also custom coop designers and builders. Although owls fly in at night if the flock is not put up for the night and has taken the heads of as many as five hens at one time. So I took them for a necropsy that discovered coccidia in 4 out of the 9. I have a small farm in the country and have been living in harmony with all creatures. The Austin is a premium 12’x6′ chicken coop with a 4’x5” henhouse which will comfortably house up to 12 chickens at night. What to put on top of outdoor run in snow country? I will be using RentheChicken which brings them May-October 1 as a test run. This post contains links to online shopping, which is a way for you to support One Acre Farm at no additional cost to you. Predator Proofing Your Chicken Coop and Run You must understand from the start that virtually nothing is 100% effective, but it is possible to make the coop and run almost 100% effective. While that won’t happen again while they are in their coop and run, I know other predators can get in. It is also not uncommon for chickens to be attacked by feral cats or even the family dog. They do seem a little pale but are acting energetic. What does it look like? This post explains how to fortify your set-up to exclude the common poultry predators of the US. Welcome to Southern Chicken Coops! We got it on craigslist. He rigged it so that one charger runs both tractors. This is still looking expensive. Learn about The Spruce's Editorial Process. Predator proof chicken run. Eliminate predator hiding places near the coop. Predator Apron for Chicken Coop. Thank for your great sage advice about keeping chickens safe. The Ultimate Guide to Raising Chickens for Eggs. Digging around the chicken coop. After that, be sure to create an apron that runs around the perimeter of the chicken run. One of our meat birds was taken by an owl … but it was totally our fault!! Thank you. If the floor is just dirt and can be burrowed under, you’ll also want to consider putting mesh around the exterior floor of the coop — something called a predator apron — to keep animals from burrowing in under the fence. Janet is completely correct, you probably will never forget. What about a motion sensor light around to coop? Attach the apron using screws or staples at least 20 inches from the coop. I wanted to go electric, but I would have probably zapped myself. Ideally, at least a portion of the run will be covered by a roof both for protection from the elements and from aerial predators. They can’t pull the bird out, but they try, often killing the bird in the process. I am now re-planning my entire layout. That will keep out predators including small ones such as weasels and larger ones like bobcats. A few evenings ago, we were putting the hens into the smaller run and a copperhead Snake slide right in WITH ME THERE! Such a cute but ferocious critter. If you are really tight on space, avoid flighty, high strung breeds (usually the slender, white egg laying breeds) because they really need to move and forage. Luckily he did not stay,but we have a snake catcher now if we see him again. There’s no way animals can rip the seam apart. A sturdy coop with a solid or mesh floor, or an apron; Although they are not as common as other predators in most parts of Australia, these native animals can wreak havoc in a chicken coop. I really dont want lead running off into the soil and area my chickens are feeding. Infamous for their love of chicken, and due to lack of natural predators, red foxes are actually more likely to strike in urban and suburban areas rather than rural. Inspect your chicken coop and run each day, making sure there aren’t any signs of varmints burrowing or tunneling underneath the fence. Grub and Grit. ANSWER: Thanks for your support! These lights can be attached around your chicken coop, facing out in all 4 directions. Thanks so much for the great tips. Definitely Yes Votes: 0 0.0% Yes, with some supplemental poultry netting or hardware cloth Votes: 3 75.0% Maybe Votes: 0 0.0% NO Votes: 0 0.0% What the?? With that in mind, I will get some for our farm since there have been instances of missing chickens lately. It is open at the top, but we have the top covered with two tarps. Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance. Let the ground be the floor, but be sure to bury fencing well below ground level, or surround it with a skirt, as described below. Yes, an electric fence will work against raccoons if you set it up such that the raccoon will have to come into contact with the wire in order to enter the coop and run. If you are just building your coop, think about the floor. We’re assuming it’s raccoons, but it might also be coyotes. Mar 28, 2020. Predator Proofing Your Chicken Coop and Run. Not only for the hens’ feet, but also because moisture from poop in contact with it will eventually cause it to rust and decompose.I think a motion sensor light might work for some predators, especially the more wary species, like bobcat, but I doubt it will work for raccoons and opossums, species that live close to humans and adapt quickly to our noises and lights. Also heated water containers, food bins Any help appreciated! Mar 2, 2017 - What are your suggestions for a predator proof chicken run? Be sure to put in a substantial skirt and/or go at least 18 inches under ground, because some rabbits do dig diligently and deeply. You must fortify your set-up to foil creatures small enough to slip through little holes, strong enough to destroy a car, or deft enough to open one-step locks. We’ve had many predator scares over the years, and birds can freeze in fear, temporarily, but out of all that, I’ve had only one bird remain frozen in fear and die of a heart attack within hours.

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