A possum got into the coop a few nights ago. We were able to save all the girls but one. Reinforced the cage the next day (we saw where he got in) but now my girls are afraid to go into their coop. They sit huddled outside in the rain. I have been forcing them into the coop and securely closing the door but I feel terrible, they obviously dont want to be in there any more....what can I do?
My Girls are scared!
Sorry for your loss. Have you cleaned the coop out? I don't know if chickens have a good sense of smell, or not, but that seems like something else to do. After a similar incident, I even entertained the possibility of chicken ghosts, the way they seemed so freaked about returning. But they did, and I'd bet that yours will, too.
I'm new to the whole chicken keeping thing, I have been watching my chickens that have only been in their new coop for about a week and it seems like mine are frightened by noises and run in panic to the coop. It seems like they feel like their coop is a safe haven, a place of protection. Your chickens lost the feeling of safety in their coop.
If you don't mind me asking, How did it get in? We all benefit from each others mistakes. Did you know the flaw was there?
Thanks for the advice. I unfortunately did not clean the coop out and I bet that is what they are afraid of. We live in Seattle and it has been raining a lot! So I limited in what I can do in a day, but will definitely get in there and clean the coop. The possum got in their outside covered area which is attached to their coop. They have slept in the coop for 3 years and have had open doors to go back and forth. Never saw a possum before but my husband carries a concealed gun permit and when the BB gun didn't hurt the possum he went and got his pistol. I now understand their fear - their flock member was killed in their safe place. I will do every thing I can to make them feel safe again. Thanks guys!