jnjmanning

Songster
7 Years
May 31, 2012
1,343
57
153
Sullivan Missouri
Hi my name is Jacquie. I hatched my 1st chickens in April. My chicks hatched on Easter Sunday! I have a friend with a flock of around 50 free range chickens. I loved being at her house and watching all the chicken antics. So she sent me home with tons of books, incubator, turner, and 18 eggs. She has half full breed chickens and about half mixed breed. So I knew this would be exciting to see what hatched. I ended up getting 12 out of 18 to hatch, pretty good odds I thought. From hatching they all seemed to quickly get their own little personalities. We built a nice coop and fenced in a really nice yard, complete with beautiful shade trees. I put them out at 7 weeks old. They loved being outside! Every morning when I let them out of the coop, they would run to me, and each wait their turn to be picked up and petted. I never knew chickens were so friendly and personable. On Monday Memorial day I woke to a horrible tragedy! A raccoon and gotten into the coop and killed all 12 of my babies! It was a horrible site! What they didn't eat, they killed. Then proceeded to poop everywhere! With all the poop we knew it was more than 1 coon. My first reaction was NO more chickens. I didn't want to go through that again! But my husband refused to let the raccoons win. We finally found out how they got in and have fixed the problem, plus we are concreteing everywhere we can put concrete! We set 2 traps and caught 2 coons the 1st night. Sadly they died of lead poison (if you catch my drift). I set another trap last night, but nothing this morning. I know there is at the very least, one more coon out there. I saw tracks under my squirrel feeder this morning and he showed on my game cam. So now the squirrel feeder is GONE! Sorry mister squirrel!!! We are going to do our best to make sure nothing can ever get to the chickens again while they are in the coop at night. I will be starting new eggs on June 4th. I am excited and scared at the same time. We have the coop as secure as Fort Knox, but I doubt I will sleep well till they have been out there for months with no predators getting in. I do have a question. Is it better to lock them in what you think is a safe coop at night, or leave the door open so at least they have a fighting chance?
 

SillyChicken

Crowing
10 Years
Jan 12, 2010
5,149
650
366
Hi my name is Jacquie. I hatched my 1st chickens in April. My chicks hatched on Easter Sunday! I have a friend with a flock of around 50 free range chickens. I loved being at her house and watching all the chicken antics. So she sent me home with tons of books, incubator, turner, and 18 eggs. She has half full breed chickens and about half mixed breed. So I knew this would be exciting to see what hatched. I ended up getting 12 out of 18 to hatch, pretty good odds I thought. From hatching they all seemed to quickly get their own little personalities. We built a nice coop and fenced in a really nice yard, complete with beautiful shade trees. I put them out at 7 weeks old. They loved being outside! Every morning when I let them out of the coop, they would run to me, and each wait their turn to be picked up and petted. I never knew chickens were so friendly and personable. On Monday Memorial day I woke to a horrible tragedy! A raccoon and gotten into the coop and killed all 12 of my babies! It was a horrible site! What they didn't eat, they killed. Then proceeded to poop everywhere! With all the poop we knew it was more than 1 coon. My first reaction was NO more chickens. I didn't want to go through that again! But my husband refused to let the raccoons win. We finally found out how they got in and have fixed the problem, plus we are concreting everywhere we can put concrete! We set 2 traps and caught 2 coons the 1st night. Sadly they died of lead poison (if you catch my drift). I set another trap last night, but nothing this morning. I know there is at the very least, one more coon out there. I saw tracks under my squirrel feeder this morning and he showed on my game cam. So now the squirrel feeder is GONE! Sorry mister squirrel!!! We are going to do our best to make sure nothing can ever get to the chickens again while they are in the coop at night. I will be starting new eggs on June 4th. I am excited and scared at the same time. We have the coop as secure as Fort Knox, but I doubt I will sleep well till they have been out there for months with no predators getting in. I do have a question. Is it better to lock them in what you think is a safe coop at night, or leave the door open so at least they have a fighting chance?
Hi,
Sorry you had such a loss so early in the game, sadly, it's all part of having lives stock. Most defiatly, LOCK the coop up at night!!!! They do not have any chance with the door open, because when they're in the coop at night, they're like a computer, in hibernation mode, they shut down and will not leave, they will hardly move! This is why its so easy for a coon to kill all the birds, cause they'll just sit there or maybe bunch up in a corner or something.. but they won't flee the coop. Make the coop predator proof and close and lock the doors after they go in at night. If you need windows open for air, put heavy duty hardware cloth over the opening. Don't use "chicken wire" that stuff is worthless and can be easily chewed through by predators.
 
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jnjmanning

Songster
7 Years
May 31, 2012
1,343
57
153
Sullivan Missouri
Thank you Thank you!!! I was so afraid I locked them into their death, and maybe they would have had a chance if they could flee. Our Coop is now FORT KNOX!!!! I feel so much better now!!!
 

sumi

Rest in Peace 1980-2020
Premium Feather Member
8 Years
Jun 28, 2011
39,153
25,427
1,302
Hello and welcome to BYC
Sorry to hear about your chickens, I've had a similar experience
It's horrible. Hope all goes well next time!
 

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