Anyone experience predators going through siding?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by birdy_num_nums, Jul 21, 2008.

  1. birdy_num_nums

    birdy_num_nums In the Brooder

    May 28, 2008
    Coop is almost chook-ready.

    I've been obsessive about designing and building for protection from predators.

    At this point I believe the 'weakest' part of the coop is the siding. Windows and doors are so fortress-like I am confident about them. I know predators can be surprising, so I am wondering if anyone has experienced problems with predators trying to claw/rip through the walls themselves?

    I'm considering adding 1/4" hardware cloth to the inside of the coop, attaching it securely to the framing (coop doesn't have insulation or interior wallboard at this time; don't plan on it unless after close monitoring this winter I decide it would be in the best interest of the hens to add it). Just another level of security in the unlikely (?) event something does get through the wall, it will then encounter another 'wall' of hardware cloth. What do you think?
  2. shearenjoyment

    shearenjoyment Hatching

    Jul 15, 2008
    Ontario, Canada
    Thanks for asking this...I've been wondering the exact same thing.
    We are in the process of building our coop and it will sheathed in plywood (initially) and will be insulated (eventually). I'm worried about the siding too, because the morning after we assembled all of our building supplies every exposed 2x4 and roofing panel was COVERED in raccoon paw prints.

    (We've buried 1/4" hardware cloth 24 inches down around the foundation perimeter - we're planning a dirt floor with deep litter - but now the walls seem so inadequate even though they are only assembled in my mind)
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2008
  3. 1acrefarm

    1acrefarm Songster

    Nov 3, 2007
    About the only predator I can think of defeating siding would be a very hungry bear. Edited to say a rat or squirrel can chew through siding but they will usually take advantage of any small opening that already exists.
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2008
  4. sovia

    sovia Songster

    Mar 4, 2008
    Black Hills of SD
    The old shed we converted into a coop had a lot of knot holes, etc., and we were sure weasels would be able to enter the coop that way. We decided to line the ceiling with hardware cloth and then wrapped it down onto the walls about 4-6". We then used some old roofing metal and lined all the interior walls with it. There is no way a weasel can come through the siding now! It has the double advantage of blocking drafts through the walls in the winter since the coop isn't insulated.
  5. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    Not much but a bear is going to go literally THROUGH siding (unless it is all punky and rotted). However be aware that raccoons, coyotes etc are amazingly strong and if they can get a grip on the edge of an insufficiently-attached panel of siding they may rip it open and get in that way.

  6. SterlingAcres

    SterlingAcres Songster

    Apr 17, 2008
    Poconos, PA
    Siding is nailed directly to the plywood, so the only thing going threw that is a d*mned bear. Just make sure to secure all gaps and holes, since rats and weasels can get it. Minks totally devastated my grandfathers flock years ago. Killed at least 50 birds.
  7. I guess it also depends on the style of the siding and how the seams interlock. Go with your gut and if you think you need additional protection, such as hardware cloth, it will save you endless nights of worry if you install it. Lucky birds!
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2008

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