Feed inside coop or in run

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by GramaCindy, Feb 19, 2015.

  1. GramaCindy

    GramaCindy Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 30, 2011
    Far NW Wisconsin
    I am going to be new to raising chickens this May and I have a question. I plan on building a sturdy, predator resistant coop and run. 1/2" hardware cloth all around and under. Down 12" all around. Is it best to keep the food inside the coop to help prevent predators coming sniffing around? I have every possible kind of predator up here. Bear, coon, weasle, fox, hawk, eagle, bobcat. You name it. Any suggestions I would really appreciate. I hope that I don't have to go the electric fence route.
     
  2. lalaland

    lalaland Overrun With Chickens

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    Sep 26, 2008
    Pine County MN
    I like to keep the food and the water outside of the coop - put food away at night - predators will be attracted to the chickens, mice and rats to the food.

    Make the run as big as you possibly can - and I've had good luck laying wire fencing down, tied with wire to the upright fence . This way I didn't have to dig fencing into the dirt to keep dogs, etc from digging under the fence. Depends on whether you are more short of time or money!

    I'm in northern mn so have same predators except no bobcats that I know of in the area. Biggest problem has been dogs digging under (not since I laid fencing on ground though) and hawks/owls (but not since I laid wire fencing over run as a roof).

    Good luck!
     
  3. Kmath

    Kmath Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 19, 2015
    Canada
    Believe it or not bears are extremely attracted to poultry or bird feed. Keep your feed in a air tight container away from the coop. I feed in the morning, usually all gone when I go out that evening to check on them. The chances of a bear bothering your chickens is rare. If you live anywhere like where I live they have plenty of food. It's the coyotes that are the main concern. Or weasels. Hardware cloth is perfect. Make sure nothing can dig under or sneak in.
     
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  4. lalaland

    lalaland Overrun With Chickens

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    Sep 26, 2008
    Pine County MN
    yeah, bears in my area go after birdfeeders, and I've seen bears walk by my run but never even turn their heads to look ! . I have heard of persons who have lost their chickens to bears, and have even heard of bears breaking into coops but haven't had that experience. we have black bears a plenty where I am....
     
  5. Kmath

    Kmath Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 19, 2015
    Canada
    Me too but I wouldn't worry about it. Maybe get a sensor light? Motion lights can deter predators. I have 3 dogs that would deter the bears
     
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  6. RonP

    RonP Chillin' With My Peeps

    Never had to deal with bears...but I keep my food inside the coop because of squirrels...
     
  7. WNCcluck

    WNCcluck Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 1, 2014
    Mountains of WNC
    You definitely don't want the food stored anywhere the bears can break into. We've got bunches of black bears. They love bird food, dog food, trash food ... and are quite adept at destroying pretty much anything they can sink their claws into. We keep our chicken feed in our storage shed in metal cans. That helps keep the rodents out. The bears, coyotes, raccoons, weasels, and such haven't figured out how to get in the shed ... yet!
     
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