Chicken Snakes and rats?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by chickfluff, Sep 4, 2010.

  1. chickfluff

    chickfluff Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 2, 2009
    San Diego
    How do you keep chicken snakes away from the coop? I have two friends who I've managed to convince into getting chickens, (Muahaha!) but they live in Texas, and are worried snakes might get into the coop. I've told them to make sure there are no holes in the coop besides the door. But they aren't convinced. I've heard that mothballs (in a container with holes) will keep them away. Are there any other methods of keeping them away/getting rid of them? All help is GREATLY appreciated. Thank you!
     
  2. dawnchick

    dawnchick Out Of The Brooder

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    May 13, 2010
    People around here believe in mothballs; I don't know whether they really work, and I worry they are toxic.

    Rat snakes and rats will mostly eat the feed and/or eggs, and won't usually bother a mature chicken. We get snakes in the coop all the time -- I just watch for big poisonous ones. I think the snakes are mostly there to eat the rats/mice, but forsure a good sized rat snake will eat eggs. The chickens will often kill both, too. I watched a chicken walk right over a rather large moccasin the other day. Don't know if the snake wasn't hungry or what, but neither seemed to notice the other. (I'm talking about a cottonmouth.) Rat snakes used to hang around my bird feeder to eat small birds, too, but I've never seen one bother a mature chicken; we'd catch and relocate the snake. Just my experience.
     
  3. huntinfamily

    huntinfamily Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 15, 2010
    I have hear that if you ring the outside of your coop with nylon rope the snakes will not slither over it because the course fibers are painful to them. Don't know if it works or not but my Grandfather swore that it does. If you have a couple of mature chickens in you coop they will usually kill snakes that come around
     
  4. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    Snakes are kind of like mice...if they want in a place badly enough, they're going to find a way in. I'd say 99% of snakes that bothered to slither their way into a coop are going to be helpful type snakes. Yes, they could end up with an egg or two, and tiny chicks would be at risk, but the benefits outweigh the costs IMO.
     
  5. The Kibble Goddess

    The Kibble Goddess Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 24, 2009
    Sylvania, Ga
    DO NOT put mothballs in the coop. They can severely irritate the birds' air sacs. Keep the coop and the area around it clean of debris where snakes could find cover, close up all small entry holes, and look before putting your hands in the nest boxes. If snakes don't have a suitable living environment & food available, they won't come around.
     

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