Building a predator proof (?) Coop?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Broodica, Sep 13, 2010.

  1. Broodica

    Broodica Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 20, 2010
    Cascade Foothills, WA
    We are new to ducks/chickens, and haven't put ours in the coop yet, but my husband is busy building it.

    We live out in the country in the foothills of the Cascades and have every imaginable predator the state of Washington can throw at us. We were doing the trench thing around the base of the coop/duckhouse/run to bury the hardware cloth, when a neighbor came over (he has chickens) and suggested instead of burying the hardware cloth, to dig it under the structure and lay it so it actually forms the bottom of the structure, overlapping each sheet by about 3-4". We cut about 24" excess on either side, and then ran it up the sides over the regular fencing so the bottom of the fence is extra protected. We then layed about 5 inches of dirt on top of the 1/2" wire and my husband is going to pour concrete in the trenches we had already dug....why not? My neighbor claims nothing will be able to dig under and get through. We are going to put an electric fence wire above the hardware cloth that comes up on the outside. We have galvanized 6' chain link fencing as it was an old dog run, and we already have another electric wire over the top of that. We are also putting hardware wire over the top so that the run is totally enclosed. We figure if anything makes it over the electric fence, they'll still be stuck up there and hopefully not fall through! The beasts will be able to free run during part of the day in a 1000 square foot enclosure, which still makes me nervous (hawks and bald eagles) and will be locked up at night.

    That's where we've gotten so far! The actual coop is a large, old doghouse with a covered porch. We haven't begun to work on that yet. I am kind of hoping the ducks and chickens will just hang together in the coop at night, but just in case, we will be putting another doghouse in there for the ducks. Both will have close fitting doors and protected ventilation. We have 4 ducklings and 4 chicks (2 weeks old).

    Waddaya think so far? My husband calls it the bunker, but I keep hearing stories of those ever "get into the coop" evolving predators!

    Thanks!
     
  2. LynneP

    LynneP Chillin' With My Peeps

    We're in a heavy predator zone too, some ideas below-[​IMG]
     
  3. Broodica

    Broodica Chillin' With My Peeps

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    99
    Aug 20, 2010
    Cascade Foothills, WA
    Thanks Lynn - Those are great sites! You guys are amazing! We very rarely get much below freezing....just enough to get snow sometimes....a couple of feet on occasion, but it never lasts too long. I think the longest we had snow stick around was for about 2 weeks at any one time. It usually starts raining and washes it all away. We had none at all last year. But it looks like drainage is something we will have to consider. I am going to pass these on to the Bunker Architect, aka my DH.....I just hope he doesn't run away screaming....!
     
  4. LynneP

    LynneP Chillin' With My Peeps

    We're building our second coop in the barn so thoughts of winter are on us again. You shouldn't have a bad time with temps- as you say the moisture is your biggest concern so drainage is the issue...
     

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