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Posts by KYTinpusher

The video doesn't play when I click it, just opens as an image, so I didn't see if the raccoon opened the door. Raccoons are very smart and strong. If they can get a finger hold under the door, they will open it. If there is not a bar across the bottom of the door to block them from getting leverage, you will need to modify it. Just make sure that however you modify it, the door can still close all the way and doesn't get hung up. Remember, weather can make wood expand and...
So, raccoons it was! They will come out before dusk if they are hungry enough, so you will need another way to protect your chickens beside the automatic door.
Very pretty birds, but they are not leghorns. Light Sussex, perhaps?
I'm so sorry for your loss!  Make sure you move the nightguard lights once in a while so the predators don't get used to it. Our resident fox won't go near our donkeys pasture.  She would rather be out in the open on the road than go through the pasture.   I agree with the electric poultry netting. Once the fox knows it is electric, it won't go near it even if the power is out. I find that the only time our neighborhood fox comes after my chickens is when she is raising...
 I'm so sorry for your loss!  Something may have gotten in before the door shut for the night (and escaped when it opened in the morning), or the door may not have functioned properly (dead battery?) and stayed open all night. Did you check it to make sure it was closed at night? A large animal like a raccoon or fox would have eaten a good portion of the body of at least one if it were trapped in there all night. But don't assume it was because of the automatic door. Check...
Amazon, Walmart, Tractor Supply or your local farm/garden center.
The hawk may not see the fishing line and could become entangled in it. It could fall through and become trapped in with your birds. If you use fishing line, also hang a bunch of old CDs from it. The flashes of light off the CDs will scare off the hawk. I use the holographic bird scare tape over my open runs and it works great. When hung a little loosely and slightly twisted, the slightest breeze causes many flashes of light so the hawk can not easily gauge the size of the...
Yes, I still have 2 extra.
I would suggest you look into Silverudd's Blue (formerly known as Isbars). They are a rare Swedish production breed that are known for laying lots of large (to extra-large in their second year) green eggs. Despite laying large eggs, they are rather small compared to the more common breeds like Orpingtons and Australorps. That small size translates to better feed efficiency (read "less expensive to keep" ). They are wonderful free-rangers, but take well to a captive run...
    Here's a page with lots of information that may help: http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/step-by-step-guide-to-assisted-hatching   Or, a thread with lots of people who have been where you are that would love to help you through this: http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1046313/incubating-w-friends-come-hatch-learn-chat-w-hosts-sally-sunshine-bantychooks/0_20   Good luck  and keep us posted! 
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