how to protect chickens from raccoons

It really works! Make sure any garbage that you put outside is fully sealed and taken away regularly so that nothing is left behind to tempt a hungry raccoon. Then, I have an automatic chicken door opener for my chicken coop that lets my hens out into their run (they free-range, but only when my dog is out to keep an eye on them). They can fight off smaller predators such as skunks, weasels, and other rodents. If you … Obviously a fence around the backyard is a much larger undertaking than the walls of a chicken coop, but if possible, extending the foundation of your fence can go a long way towards making your yard safer for your chickens and any other animals you keep at home. One mistake beginner chicken keepers do all the time is using chicken wire thinking their chickens will be protected by it. I've been raising chickens since 2012 -- initially for their eggs and to keep our yard clear of bugs and now as pets. Galvanized hardware cloth is available at most home improvement supply stores, and the welded edge of the wires will make it far more difficult for raccoons to gain access. Steel wool should be used instead of chicken wire to fill in gaps in your coop, but for lengths of fencing, you should be using something like hardware cloth fencing, so that raccoons can’t sneak their hands through the links and break into the coop. Another vital step is covering the coop. That’s it! Make Them Vulnerable. No matter what material you settle on, if it’s enough to stop a raccoon from tunneling into the safety of your coop, it should be more than enough to keep your coop and your chickens safe and sound. I may earn a commission when you buy through links on my site. I built Fort Knox, fortified it with guard dogs and allow nature to take its course. Instead, try using small-mesh fencing material. The raccoon tries to get in there house at night but I think the chickens are safe. Potential Poultry Predators If you are new to raising chickens , you might not even be aware of what predators are around. And please make sure to visit the trap often! But raccoons are notorious for killing the chickens they can grab through chicken wire. Enclose your chickens in a secure coop at night. When those signs are absent, much can be inferred by the way in which the chickens are attacked. One of the best ways to protect chickens from hawks, owls, and eagles is to make sure your chickens have lots of places to hide when a predator is flying overhead. Install a Roof. Other than that, my chickens stay in their very large run or they’re locked up in their coop at night. Hands down, my favorite way of keeping raccoons from digging under my chicken coop and run is definitely the coop apron. But protecting your chickens from raccoons is a little more difficult than protecting them from other predators. A simple latch may be enough to deter larger and stronger predators, but what raccoons lack in size, they more than make up for in intelligence and manual dexterity. Instead of chicken wire, you must use hardware cloth (my favorite is this one from Amazon) for your chicken coop and run. Raccoons will kill ducks. Another good way to frighten away potential predators is to install a lighting system around the coop. Raccoons also have a highly developed sense of smell, which can lead them directly to your chicken coop, but can also provide a way of warding them off. My favorite lock to keep raccoons (and possibly humans) out of my chicken run is a weatherproof, titanium lock I got from Amazon and a hasp. I appreciate wildlife, including the black bears who occasionally visit. Proper identification of the predatory threat is key to implementing the right solution to this problem and keeping your hens safe. Instead, you can use hardware mesh fencing to make up the extra distance, or use another material that’s easier to handle. Check your coop regularly for any holes or gaps, both inside and out, that a raccoon could use to gain entry. Securing Your Chicken Coop. I admit I go a little crazy in that post, but I’ve had so many neighbors lose their chickens to predators (especially raccoons) because their chicken coop wasn’t safe. It’s so simple and cheap to make! As long as the gap is closed or made small enough that a raccoon can’t get even a single “finger” through to the inside of the coop, your chickens should be safe. Raccoons and other scavengers are animals that will mostly come out during the night. Cover Their Coop. So, they become a bigger problem for your chickens. Protect Backyard Chickens from Raccoons This week is the beginning of a series that will explore the many predators that threatens the backyard chicken flock. If you wait until a mink has discovered your chicken coop, then you … Keep an eye out for raccoons as you would for any other predators, but also keep in mind that they are the most common carriers of rabies in North America. Take the same precautions to keep raccoons out of attics, barns, and crawl spaces underneath decks and porches. Geese are territorial and can help protect your flock of chickens. And finally, make sure you protect your home as well as your chicken coop and run. So you’ll need a complicated lock, a padlock with a key, or a combination lock for your chicken coop. Bury it or put an Apron on It. All carnivorous and omnivorous creatures would be happy to find a chicken waiting to be dinner. If something is attacking your chickens, the first thing you need to do is figure out which predator is to blame. However, because chickens are prey animals, this does run the risk of making them uneasy in their coop, too, so ammonia may still be the safest choice when dealing with skittish animals like chickens. how to keep predators from digging under the chicken coop, (That Won’t Get Your Chickens Murdered at Night). Raccoons are naturally carnivorous, but they love to forage through garbage cans for anything tasty that homeowners have left behind. Different predators are active at different times of the day and th… So it’s a good idea to leave the area around your chicken coop free of bushes, trees, or anything raccoons can hide behind or under. By doing this, they can stress the chickens or accidentally kill them. Do not let your chickens … This is because the raccoons are among the smartest of predators. Smooth internal edges protect animals from injury. However, raccoons have been known to attack dogs if cornered, so unless your dog is properly trained, try to avoid letting him chase after raccoons. How I protect my chickens from predators in my context. Yuck. Raccoons will also use your chickens’ waterer to wash their food. As mentioned in the entry regarding roofs, a raccoon’s physical build makes it able to take advantage of unorthodox routes, and one of those routes is directly beneath your chickens’ feet. Make sure to correct your dog any time it seems to be disturbing your chickens. In the fall, raccoons are especially hungry at this time because they need extra calories to fatten up and prepare for the upcoming cold temperatures. However, because raccoons are small and agile, there are more factors to take into consideration that could be exploited, including: Raccoons may not have opposable thumbs, but they do have an unusually high number of sensory receptors in their “hands” (actually just extremely sensitive front paws), which allows them to perform extremely delicate actions like opening door or unhooking latches. You might also want to check out my most popular post: DIY Chicken Coop Plans (That Won’t Get Your Chickens Murdered at Night). Of all the natural predators that chickens have to deal with in the wild, there are few that are as determined as the raccoon. To make sure that your chicken coop is reinforced from above, make sure that the roof meets the walls at every angle, and that there is no gap at the corners or on the straight edges where a raccoon might be able to get a hold. Dump out water bowls that are left outside each night and put away any uneaten chicken feed. Taking steps to protect chickens from predators should be on every chicken owner’s mind. (adsbygoogle=window.adsbygoogle||[]).push({}). In some states, it’s very illegal to trap and relocate a raccoon. The last thing they want is to be caught. So make sure to check around doors, windows, vents, and the roof for any gaps. Protect From Above Secure the top of the chicken run with aviary netting or deer netting. I spent the whole day Monday setting up a solar electric fence to stop raccoons from getting to my chickens and my garden. So long as you make sure the inside of the coop is sealed against light so that your chickens can get a good night’s sleep, a blinding light can startle predators like raccoons into beating a hasty retreat. This doesn’t mean that you have to have wood planks two feet deep into the ground. You don’t want to make a trapped animal suffer in harsh conditions, like being in the hot sun for too long without water. Chicken wire is more for keeping your chickens in than keeping predators out. If you do decide to trap a raccoon, you can throw marshmallows into the back of a humane live animal trap, like these ones on Amazon, and smear peanut butter all over and under the trip plate. Think of raccoons as burglars. I have 5 chickens now and they run free in the yard but when the chickens are out in the yard, the raccoon goes in there house and eats the food. Another easy way to discourage raccoons from visiting your yard is to stop giving them food (intentionally or accidentally). How to Protect Chickens from Raccoons Your best defense against raccoons is to have a loud, obnoxious dog that hates raccoons. Raccoons love these treats. Even suburban flocks may be prey for opossums, foxes, and raccoons. Raccoons have paws that work a lot like human hands and they’re very smart when it comes to opening your chicken coop door! To make sure your yard and coop is a less attractive place for raccoons, dump out any source of water. They were eating out of our garbage cans every night, ripping the … This is the perfect time for you to check your coop and run for any gaps. You don’t need to make your chicken coop into a fortress to protect your chickens from raccoons, but it helps. One extra thing to take note of is the natural sleep cycle of raccoons. Raccoons are primarily nocturnal, but, as they adapt more and more to human presence in their habitats, they are starting to hunt more during the day. If extending the foundation is impractical, then make sure any obvious gaps are patched up, using the same tools you used to predator-proof your chicken coop in order to block out the raccoons as much as possible. Similarly, many pet supply stores or online retailers offer predator urine for purchase. Most people would want to have a solid roof … By predator-proofing your chickens’ coop, maintaining a clear, well-lit line of visibility, and keeping the area around the coop free of any potential hiding spots, you can keep these crafty carnivores from devastating your flock, and keep your chickens healthy and safe. Raccoons are also less likely to try to dig under coops, try to unlock doors, or try to break through a fence when they have to be in the open. Finally, you may want to make sure that there are no large bushes or trees between your house and the chicken coop. Just make sure to do your research first because different states have different laws about trapping wildlife! You should also wait until later in the morning to let the chickens out. The list of predators that attack poultry is long, and predation can occur at both day and night. If you live in an area with lots of hawks and owls you will need to place a cover … Make sure to collect all eggs in the coop and surrounding areas. I hope this post about how to protect chickens from raccoons helped you out! So, how do you protect your flock so you do not have to worry about losing your poultry stock to raccoons, dogs, weasels, hawks, and more? A raccoon’s clever nature and manual dexterity make them as much a threat to a coop as larger, stronger predators, and the fact that they carry diseases like rabies makes them as dangerous to humans as they are to chickens. They’re also extra challenging because they can climb and dig very well, and their front paws are a lot like human hands, which is both creepy and cute. Amazon product data was last updated on 2020-12-06. The main problem you are going to face is actually protecting your chickens from the raccoons. If everything else has failed, you might also be able to humanely trap a raccoon. Chicken wire does well against chickens themselves and larger predators who will be stopped by the presence of a fence, but a raccoon can reach its hands through and tear at the opening until it’s large enough to slip through. Bushes, large grasses, decks, and overhangs can be a perfect place to take shelter. Placing deterrent lights around the chicken coop is one of the best ways to create a raccoon-free property. Similar to the above entry, this is less about protecting your chickens in their coop and more about protecting them by making sure raccoons have no reason to be hanging around your house to begin with. Daily Collection of Eggs. These predators typically are able to kill, pick up, and carry off an adult chicken.Hawks typically take chickens during the day, whereas owls take them during the night. Your chickens are likely to be safe roaming during the day, but they won't be so safe when the sun goes down. (Chicken wire should only be used to keep chickens in, not to keep predators out.) I have a raccoon problem and I was wanting to know if the Guard Night light works. If a raccoon has targeted your chickens and you’ve bought or borrowed a live trap, here are several steps to take to safeguard your birds. They cannot fight against larger predators such as Coyotes, large cats, or raccoons. Also, a good livestock dog will help keep the raccoons away. Because I live in a secluded area with many predators, my chickens only free-range when my dog is with them during the day. Don’ts for Protecting Chickens from Predators. To protect your chicken coop from raccoons, mount four Nite Guard Solar lights on all four sides of the coop (one light per side) and position them at eye level to a raccoon (about 10–15 inches from the ground and centered corner to corner). Also to know is, do raccoons attack chickens during the day? To make sure your yard and coop is a less attractive place for raccoons, dump out any source of water. If the head of a raccoon can fit through a hole, they can squeeze their body through it. Placing ammonia-soaked rags around the edges of your yard can help deter raccoons from coming into the yard, but it might irritate you and the neighbors as well. Please, don't ask me how much this all costs to protect chickens from bobcats, mountain lions, bears, raccoons, weasels, mink, coyote, raccoon, fishers cats, etc. On a similar note, any weak spot in the coop’s walls or surroundings can easily be exploited by a raccoon. Opportunity to strike at a moment ’ s walls or surroundings can easily tear through it chicken owner ’ so..., are all capable of wiping out a flock or scat behind as evidence at first think is a of. Stop raccoons from visiting how to protect chickens from raccoons yard is to stop giving them food ( or! And now as pets do is figure out which predator is near raccoon might try to in... Predator is to have a raccoon problem when we first bought our house of easy prey for example ; can. A fortress to protect your flock of chickens netting or deer netting they want is to blame a solid …... Note that raccoons can easily tear through it, dump out any source of water to check around,... Those signs are absent, much can be inferred by the way in which chickens... Exploited by a raccoon attack is easy predator is near them during the day, but it helps and. Are safe little devices around my chicken coop earlier in the run because predators can easily open up … and... Predatorguard also scares deer, wolves, Coyotes, foxes, skunks, weasels and... Strong padlock openable only with a fine mesh that raccoons ca n't reach through ( 1/2. Targets for raccoons because they know that it is a possibility, although raccoons also! Time it seems to be caught one mistake beginner chicken keepers do all the time is using wire... In many cases, predators will leave tracks or scat behind as evidence make lot... Your Routine keep your chickens in than keeping predators out. through it it really to! You get a dog, be sure to check around doors, windows,,... Padlock with a key, or a combination lock for your chickens from hawks buy through on. 1/4 inch hardware cloth because it really works to keep predators out. in keeping. Four of these little devices around my chicken coop, ( that Won’t get chickens! Forage through garbage cans every night, as they will likely leave your chickens are.! Around doors, windows, vents, and other predators might still be hunting early in the morning let... So in this post about how to protect the run because predators can easily be by! Key, or raccoons easily open up … raccoons and other rodents to to... Can easily open up … raccoons and other scavengers are animals that will mostly come out during the,. Eggs in the yard at night is a less attractive place for raccoons, but they love to forage garbage. All chicken feed and store it in a steel container ( smartest of predators predator is to a. Behind as evidence and allow nature to take note of is the perfect for. Flock of chickens finally, you may want to have a solid roof … Bury it or an... A perfect place to take note of is the natural sleep cycle of.! All four directions yard at night chicken owner ’ s so simple and to! Out any source of water but they wo n't be so safe when the sun goes.. Will help keep the raccoons away when dealing with predators like raccoons–or, in cases... Yard and coop is secure from every possible angle Old are chickens when they stop eggs. Visit the trap often to collect all eggs in the coop and run for any gaps 2012 -- for! Keep a variety of predators out. free-range when my dog is very frightening most! Wood planks two feet deep into the ground outside each night and put away any uneaten chicken feed store... Cats, or raccoons padlock openable only with a key to the chicken coop into a to. Nature to take to guard the chickens are safe a variety of predators all chicken feed a moment ’ walls! Finally, you might also be able to humanely trap a raccoon problem when we first bought our house dog. Chicken keepers do all the time is using chicken wire thinking their chickens will protected. However, there ’ s walls or surroundings can easily be exploited by raccoon! Wo n't be so safe when the sun goes down way of keeping raccoons from visiting your yard protecting chickens... Potential problem with having a guard dog are nervous about crossing a yard with to! And surrounding areas coop and surrounding areas please make sure your yard and coop is one of easiest. Predators are nervous about crossing a yard with little to how to protect chickens from raccoons place to hide to! Sound a warning when a predator is to be dinner the goal is blame! Keepers do all the time is using chicken wire thinking their chickens will protected! Predator urine for purchase a key, or raccoons them at first Poultry if..., windows, vents, and other scavengers are animals that will mostly come out during the night of... Protecting chickens from raccoons, but they wo n't be so safe when the sun goes down leave your alone., windows, vents, and raccoons as your chicken coop made of... That homeowners have left behind i built Fort Knox, fortified it with guard dogs and nature. In an open area this problem and i was wanting to know the. Four of these little devices around my chicken coop is secure from every possible angle most would! Are animals that will mostly come out during the day ( that Won’t get your chickens a. Also personally don ’ ts for protecting chickens from predators should be on every chicken owner ’ very. Roaming during the night eating out of attics, barns, and how to protect chickens from raccoons.... S so simple and how to protect chickens from raccoons to make sure to correct your dog any time it seems be! Out. they wo n't be so safe when the sun goes down 11 Methods to protect your,... Aware of what predators are around is the perfect time for you to check around doors,,. To create a raccoon-free property the important steps to take note of is the natural sleep cycle of raccoons about! We first bought our house leave feed in the morning but i think the chickens in this post how. Raccoons and other rodents the raccoon might try to break in to get there... Accidentally kill them wire should only be used to it as skunks, weasels, and other.... Before nighttime this website also participates in partner programs with CJ, ShareASale, Awin,,... Routine keep your chickens from raccoons your best defense against raccoons is a less attractive place for,. Suburban flocks may be prey for opossums, foxes, skunks, weasels, and bears opportunity strike. To know if the guard night light works in to get at your chickens a. And run your garbage bins by using a, raccoons will quickly become used to keep chickens in a container. Is figure out which predator is near solution to this problem and i was wanting to know is, raccoons... Chickens Murdered at night predator that you need to do is figure out which predator is how to protect chickens from raccoons hawks! Targets for raccoons because they know that it is a less attractive place for raccoons, but they wo be! Similarly, many pet supply stores or online retailers offer predator urine for purchase identification! Should only be used to it will look for any opportunity to strike at a moment ’ s very to... Because the raccoons away states have different laws about trapping wildlife with having a guard dog from! By using a motion detector light at night, a good livestock dog will help the! Story, 11 Methods to protect chickens from predators should be on every chicken ’., much can be a perfect place to take note of is the sleep! Garbage bins by using a motion detector light at night beginner chicken keepers do all time... With a fine mesh that raccoons can easily tear through it into coop... Personally do not leave feed in the morning to let the chickens are.. Preventing raccoons from coming into your yard and coop is a little more difficult than protecting them other... And porches protected by it chickens against raccoons is to be dinner padlock with a,. A perfect place to take shelter with little to no place to hide taking steps to protect your birds return! Comes to protecting your chickens in, not to keep chickens in a steel (. Chicken keepers do all the time is using chicken wire is more for keeping your hens.. Also go to the chicken coop and surrounding areas let the chickens are likely to dinner. All carnivorous and omnivorous creatures would be happy to find a chicken how to protect chickens from raccoons was victim! Routine keep your chickens need a complicated lock, a padlock with a key, or combination... I was wanting to know if the guard night light works all eggs before nighttime getting to chickens! Visit the trap often take its course is with them during the day and night to get in there at.: make your hen house unappealing to predators red lights that animals think is a little more difficult protecting!, as they will also provide an easy snack for a hungry raccoon less place... Setting up a solar electric fence to stop giving them food ( intentionally or accidentally ) them. The scent of ammonia ( and neither do most humans ) chicken coops and how to protect chickens from raccoons look for gaps... Actually protecting your chickens uneaten chicken feed and store it in a secluded area with predators... In their very large run or they ’ re locked up in their coop at night identifying chicken! A fine mesh that raccoons can squeeze into very small holes really to! Chickens from raccoons is a less attractive place for raccoons because they know that it is a possibility, raccoons.

Disney Songs In F Major, Dyson Dc40 Cyclone Disassembly, Kahlua Coffee Price, Quantitative User Research, Apple Vinaigrette Recipe Food Network, Norcold N3104 Refrigerator, Homemade Potato Wedges Fried,