Coop Bear Question

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by pw_quiltworks, Mar 13, 2009.

  1. pw_quiltworks

    pw_quiltworks One Handy Chick

    Jan 7, 2009
    I have a small coop with a latch that does not latch. The small animals cannot open as I myself have to kick the door in. I was wondering if a bear would bother my chickens. We usually see them in the spring. One was in front of my big windows. Now that was an interesting thing to look at while it was looking back at me with no more than 5 feet between us. Thank God I was inside. I just wonder if we should be worried about bears breaking into the coop and if I should paddle lock it. Anyone every have any trouble with them? I don't go to my mailbox without my gun in the spring. They are black bear.
  2. line-rat

    line-rat In the Brooder

    Nov 7, 2007
    west central ohio
    I would think it is going to be pretty hard to keep Bears out. I haven't seen anyone on here solve this problem.
  3. Imp

    Imp All things share the same breath- Chief Seattle

    There have been some very sad stories here about people not being able to do anything watching a bear tear apart their coop and kill their chickens. Be very careful & good luck.

  4. AK-Bird-brain

    AK-Bird-brain I gots Duckies!

    May 7, 2007
    Sterling, Alaska
    An electric fence has saved our flock from bears. If a bear gets fed once it will keep comming back for more.
  5. rooster-red

    rooster-red Here comes the Rooster

    Jun 10, 2007
    Douglasville GA
    Unless you have a worldwar 2 style concrete bunker for a coop, not much else will keep a bear out if it takes interest in your chickens.

    You can try running a couple of electric fences along the outside of the run or coop, that may deter a bear unless it is very hungry.

    BTW, you are not as safe from a bear as you might think inside your house, they are incredably strong.

    Having said that, we have a black bear that shows up on our property every summer as the blackberries start to ripen, it even beds down in the berries, and it has never come within 80 yards or so of the coops.
  6. pw_quiltworks

    pw_quiltworks One Handy Chick

    Jan 7, 2009
    They would have one heck of a time riping the coop apart. I only worry about the door and egg hatch in the back where I get the eggs out. The coop is well built like our house only small. I am going to take a few extra steps now to make sure. I know in the winter nothing would bother. But now spring is coming....I will go out tomorrow and make it like fort knox. I am really just worried about that darn plywood door. It is 1 in thick plywood. Solid but I still worry.

    I am pretty safe from bear in the house here unless they can jump through 6 ft high window. They would not fit through them. I would love to see that. Our glass is very heavy because of the terrible weather. We have steel doors. I really don't think they would bother me. I have plenty of other options as well. They have been in the attached garage because I have a trash can with teeth marks and I had muddy bear prints on my car. Made me madder than a wet hen!! I wish I had seen him or her doing it. It would have been the last time it done it.
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 13, 2009
  7. mkelle11

    mkelle11 In the Brooder

    Dec 13, 2008
    I think if a bear really wanted to get in, there wouldn't be much you could do about it. I don't think they would bother though- they would much rather go for your trashcan. So I wouldn't worry about it, although a lock wouldn't hurt.
  8. Imp

    Imp All things share the same breath- Chief Seattle

    I really like your BYC page. Sounds so much like my upbringing on the coast of Alaska. Always wanted to visit Maine.
    When I was living in Alaska I many times walked up on black bears while hiking, even mamas w/cubs. Never was the slightest bit afraid.(moose are another story) As a little kids my brother and I would chase them on our bicycles. But, it seems like you people in New England have psycho bears. I'm constantly amazed hearing about bears attacking and killing, especially in New Jersey. Must be something in the water.
    Hope you don't have problems with the bears.


    At the time we didn't know there were brown bears on the island as well.
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2009
  9. pw_quiltworks

    pw_quiltworks One Handy Chick

    Jan 7, 2009
    I haven't heard of anyone getting hurt here. They are just pests and get into stuff. I do think if they were hungry enough they would bother my hens. Being as big as they are one has to respect that. Course I don't know about having cubs and walking up to them.....I have a phobia about bear. Watched too much little house on the prairie. [​IMG] I think I need a dog.

    Thanks for you kind compliment. I have always wanted to go to Alaska for a visit. I would love to go crabbing. I just know I would feel so alive back on a boat. I still have a great love for the ocean. Too old for that type of work now. [​IMG]
  10. firedove

    firedove Songster

    Nov 10, 2008
    Fitzwilliam NH
    Bears are opportunistic eaters. They will go for the easiest access to food before they go after the coop. If they do end up going at the coop though not much can keep them out. My parents had a very well built cedar feeder in their yard. A bear came by one night and we watched while it opened it up like you or I would open a cereal box, no effort whatsoever.

    Also, yes bears in New England can be braizen. A few years ago a man was attacked at Franconia Notch in NH. The man was walking with a group of 5 people when the bear got in his face wanting his back pack (which ironically had no food in it). He and the other 4 people were yelling at the bear, making noise with anything they had and waving their arms, all things that are supposed to deter out local bears. The bear swatted a couple of times at the man until he fell down, sniffed the pack, and ran off when it realized there was nothing there to eat. Luckily the man only had a few nasty scratches from the event but that bear was all set to take on 5 people for what might have been in that pack. I really think it's because of the fact that much of New England is pretty well populated and the bears have just gotten so used to humans that they know they have more power than us.

    However, if you are carrying a gun they usually think twice, but sometimes still will go after a hunter. It's illegal here to kill a bear out of season and in season you have to have a special bear tag. People have gotten into trouble for shooting bears that were threatening them. Unless there is physical injury to the person it's hard to prove that the bear wasn't just passing through. IMHO if there is physical injury the gun was used too late. I like bears but I value human life over that of a bear!

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