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Daytime Predators, How worried do I need to be?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by BeckyandHerBrood, Jun 25, 2011.

  1. BeckyandHerBrood

    BeckyandHerBrood In the Brooder

    Jun 20, 2011
    Champaign, IL
    Hello All,
    I am a new chicken mom...Our 7 week old flock has been in the coop and run for about 2 weeks. I lock them in the incredibly secure coop at night, and let them into the run during the day. The outside run is fairly secure. Hardware cloth 2 feet up. All 2 X 4 construction with chicken wire stapled to posts then 1X2's screwed over top of staples. The roof is fully enclosed...chicken wire and then metal sheet. But, there are a few things that I would have done differently outside (if I had read these predator posts first). There is a 1 inch gap near the door that we cannot seem to fill in. The bottom of the entire run is lined with chicken wire (not hardware cloth) and then filled in with 4 inches of sand.

    I am home during the day and my three kids are always outside so I have not worried too much about daytime attacks, but next week I will be taking the kids on vacation for 10 days and leaving my husband (who works all day) home with the chickens.

    My question is...How many of you have lost chickens during the day? We live within village limits, in a neighborhood, but our neighborhood lies along the river, forest preserve, so we have coyotes, fox, raccoons and oppossum about.

    Hoping you can set my mind at ease. I would hate to lose a chicken because I was stupid.


  2. BeckyandHerBrood

    BeckyandHerBrood In the Brooder

    Jun 20, 2011
    Champaign, IL
    I think that I am to wordy when I ask questions [​IMG] Try this again...Have predators eaten your chickens in a run during the day?
  3. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Free Ranging Premium Member

    Mar 15, 2010
    On the MN prairie.
    If your run is secure, it should be fine. Free ranging is another story, but they'll have a much better chance in the run.
  4. Lurkeygirl2011

    Lurkeygirl2011 Chirping

    Apr 22, 2011
    If you are going to be gone, I would leave them in the run. With your husband checking on them twice a day??? they should be fine. [​IMG] Enjoy your vacation.
  5. Tiffrz-N-Kidz

    Tiffrz-N-Kidz Songster

    Jul 29, 2010
    Aledo, TX
    I had a large hawk (maybe a falcon?) get a sultan through the poultry netting around their pen in the middle of the day.

    But your run sounds very secure. They should be fine.
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2011
  6. BeckyandHerBrood

    BeckyandHerBrood In the Brooder

    Jun 20, 2011
    Champaign, IL
    Thanks for the feedback. Should I post pictures of the run so the chicken experts can let me know if it is secure? I must admit I am a little paranoid, mostly because my kids have fallen in love with the chickens.
  7. Cetawin

    Cetawin Chicken Beader

    Mar 20, 2008
    NW Kentucky
    If you feel confident in your run but remember they will have your husband's entire work shift to try to get in. I lost a giant cochin to a coyote right about lunchtime and less than 10' from my front porch and we were home.

  8. The only thing I would advise to make it more secure would be to put the hardware cloth a foot down into the ground to discourage rats from tunneling into the pen, but I think that has to be done during the building phase.

    Your pen sounds pretty secure. Just make sure your DH remembers to keep all the doors closed!
  9. wood&feathers

    wood&feathers Songster

    Dec 22, 2009
    E. KY
    My only losses have been in daytime, but they all happened with the chickens out in the yard, not under cover. Hawks have been my only problem, usually spring and fall. My canine chicken buddy keeps everything else in the neighborhood away - raccoons, coyotes, bobcats etc
  10. BeckyandHerBrood

    BeckyandHerBrood In the Brooder

    Jun 20, 2011
    Champaign, IL
    I think that I am going to leave them out in the run and keep my fingers crossed that nothing gets in. I just cannot bring myself to keep them cooped up for 10 days. This chicken mama thing is kind of scary. Hopefully nothing is determined enough to get in.

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