Keep your chickens safe from predators. - Backyard Chicken Supply

We Love Chickens

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Keep your chickens safe from predators.

Protecting your chickens from predators is often a constant battle for chicken keepers.  Chickens can fall prey to numerous animals of different species.  Foxes, bears, weasels, snakes, hawks just to name few can keep you on edge night and day.  The most important thing that you can do to protect your flock, is to build a strong coop to act as a safe haven in the night.  I would recommend using hardware cloth instead of regular chicken wire.  Pests such as mice and rats and snakes can fit though the holes in regular chicken wire.  Dogs and coyotes can chew though some chicken wire.  And large animals like bears can often times rip right trough.

Flock Guard Dog:
Training a dog to protect your flock can be an invaluable investment.  It takes time and patience, but an alert flock guardian is often the best predator deterrent.  Thats my girl Zoe in the picture above.  She loves her hens.  She doesn't stay out with the flock all the time, but if she hears any commotion in the yard she's on top of it!

Hawks can be a problem for your flock depending on your location, and the amount of tree cover on the property.  I have never seen any of my birds being taken by a Hawk, but I do suspect that some have been in teh past.  I have purchased a large span of netting to go above the run area to provide protection from hawks.

Fortunately, where I live I dont have to worry about too many ground predators. We dont have large snakes.  I do occasionally have a problem with a mongoose that like to visit the yard and try to get eggs or snatch baby chicks.  I am going to set a trap for him soon though.  Cats are also a threat to the baby chicks, but they wont really mess with most healthy adult chickens.


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