Do I need to be worried?

Bt2019ChiknMama

In the Brooder
Jun 21, 2019
6
33
39
B767FA3D-8AAA-4A80-9161-39215D7B5C17.png
These holes are appearing all around my coop. Right beside the paving stones. Should I worry?
 

SurferchickinSB

Free Ranging
Feb 23, 2018
2,868
4,434
532
California
I wouldn't waste time worrying. I would get busy burying a hardware cloth apron around the run to stop whatever is trying to dig into your run.
Sometimes though, if it is ground squirrels, the hardware cloth apron might not work. I have ground squirrels digging into my run and they are causing the paver stones to collapse.
 

SurferchickinSB

Free Ranging
Feb 23, 2018
2,868
4,434
532
California
Sometimes though, if it is ground squirrels, the hardware cloth apron might not work. I have ground squirrels digging into my run and they are causing the paver stones to collapse.
Does anybody know how deep the ground squirrels dig? I am thinking about getting some metal plates and hammering them into the ground.
 

cmom

Hilltop Farm
13 Years
Nov 18, 2007
28,408
25,323
881
Florida
My Coop
My Coop
If you have a game camera, put it up to see what is doing the digging. I'm always curious so have several in different places on my property. I was surprised at the predators that roam at night here.
IMAG0001911 03.jpg
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium Feather Member
8 Years
Nov 27, 2012
99,194
138,693
1,807
SW Michigan
My Coop
My Coop
I wouldn't waste time worrying. I would get busy burying a hardware cloth apron around the run to stop whatever is trying to dig into your run.
Yes, this...and get rid of the pavers...or use them inside the run do the birds don't dig under the apron.

Good examples of anti-dig apron installation.
If rodents are prolific, burying the apron ~12" would be good.
https://www.backyardchickens.com/threads/wire-around-coop.1110498/#post-17093528
https://www.backyardchickens.com/threads/new-coop-project.1169916/page-2#post-18481208
 

Howard E

Crowing
5 Years
Feb 18, 2016
2,881
3,940
296
Missouri
The vast majority of the time......when holes like that appear......it means brown rats. If that proves to be the case, you have a serious problem.

Hardware cloth and aprons won't help much with rats, as they have the ability to dig under just about anything you can install on the perimeter. The tried and true floor that will defeat rats is cement. Most of us do not have cement floors in our coops or runs.

Successfully dealing with rats often requires a 3 prong approach. Exclusion (think rat proofing so they can't gain entry.....and as noted above that isn't easy); elimination of food sources that attract them in the first place......and if both of those fail, be open to employing the 3rd prong, and that means poison bait blocks served up from secure bait stations. You can forget just about every other elimination method folks normally try to employ....(dogs, traps, shooting, etc). Those hardly dent the surface of a thriving colony or rats.

Key word in that paragraph was "successfully". Half measures rarely succeed.
 

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