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Tips for Building a Predator-Proof Chicken Coop
We all want to protect our babies, building a predator proof chicken coop is probably the most important aspect of protecting them. chicken raptors come in all shapes and sizes. For example cats, dogs, snakes, owls and hawks. The list can be daunting. Here are some quick tips to get you started with predator control on your squad.
Motion sensor lighting is the obvious first choice. Nocturnal predators such as coyotes, foxes and owls hunt at night and are easily spooked by just the lights turning on and off. Although this has worked for many people in various situations, it is not always the solution you are looking for. Eventually, the predator will be so hungry that they will ignore the light or at least make a mad dash towards the food, hoping to get away with it.
Secure your chickens during the night hours to keep them away from predators. A predator-proof chicken coop must be strong enough to keep the local hungry animals out. Dogs and foxes can easily tear through the thin material. A determined raccoon will release your latches, they are clever creatures too! Using 2 step latches really helps. Keep in mind that a raccoon can pick the same locks as a 2 year old can. Close any small openings through which snakes, mice, rats or weasels can enter. These guys will eat your eggs and won’t stop coming back even if they’ve been moved.
Chicken wire is a terrible way to protect a chicken coop from predators. Chicken wire is very thin, it is designed to keep the chickens inside, most animals will easily tear it from the outside. Instead, it was necessary to use 1/2 hardware cloth to prevent small animals such as mice and snakes from entering, and livestock fencing to prevent larger predators. Keep in mind that some animals, such as foxes and coyotes, can easily dig up several feet in a few minutes. extending the fabric or wire down into the ground will usually prevent them from digging further than the fence. My experience tells me that predators are lazy and will always go for the easiest food available and leave your chickens alone if they have to try too hard to get it.
A caged roof over the enclosure keeps those pesky climbing and flying raptors out. A predator-proof chicken coop can repel threats such as owls, hawks, and other birds of prey. Yes, raptors can fly away with your chickens. Even the Orpington chicken, which is quite a large breed! In most cases, a cheap net will work if you don’t have a problem with animals climbing the fence and attacking your babies.
In conclusion, your location determines what it takes to create a predator-proof chicken coop. Different areas and environments have different predators and dangers. Sometimes an electric fence is required, especially if you are in an area where bears and predators live. Few animals get further than the first poke, it shocks them!
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