How to deter foxes?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by DuckGirl77, May 31, 2016.

  1. DuckGirl77

    DuckGirl77 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 19, 2016
    OK, so today was one of the worst days of my life. I came home and found my eight of my chickens, dead, in their "predator-proof" pen. I have three chickens left. I'm sure this isn't new to any of you, but I thought that a fox couldn't get to my chickens. So, here's what happened. I have a six-foot welded wire fence, and I came home and there's a fox inside the fence. It had some trouble getting out; but it climbed out of the fence. I mean, a fox is in the dog family! How did it climb in/out?! I suppose it could have dug, but I didn't see any holes, but, of course, it could have. I didn't get too close because I can't bear to see the poor chickens up close. I'm going to have my dad bury them for me. And, don't worry, the chickens and the ducks will stay in their coop unless I am home.
    So, my question is, what kind of fencing will ensure that this doesn't happen again? I've heard lots of good stuff about electric fencing, so what do I use? Premeire One?
    Thanks. This means alot to me; my chickens are my dear pets. A word of warning to you all, make sure your chickens have a good safe fence!
    By the way, if it makes a difference, this was at 5:30 p.m. Thanks so much!
     
  2. uncertainty

    uncertainty Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That is awful DuckGirl77, I am sorry you have lost your chickens this way. I will follow this thread with interest because I am a newbie and will be letting my flock out of the brooder and into the run shortly. There is a high predator population here. I was wondering about electric fencing as well.
     
  3. DuckGirl77

    DuckGirl77 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks. It's good that you're taking this seriously; I never really did until today because I thought daytime predators couldn't get in. I also didn't know foxes come out at this hour.

    Anyone know if this is good? I'm completely new to electric fencing.
    https://www.premier1supplies.com/poultry/fencing.php?fence_id=93
     
  4. MeepBeep

    MeepBeep Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sorry to hear about your lose...

    Yes, foxes can climb very well, grey foxes hang out in trees regularly, so can raccoons and possums, bobcats and several other predators... While coyotes and bobcats can clear jump a 6 foot fence without the need to climb... The short of it is that a 6 foot fence it ineffective on it's own, you need a wire roof or solid roof to prevent climbers and jumpers from gaining entry...

    And this goes for electric fences as well, as I said a coyote can clear jump a 6 foot fence, so even if electrified they can simply jump right over it, while smaller digging predators many times can dig under or simply go through the fence getting around the electrification, thus the reason 1/2" hardware cloth, buried and skirted is recommend....
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2016
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  5. MeepBeep

    MeepBeep Chillin' With My Peeps


    It's baby season, if the nocturnal predators can't find enough at night this time of year they will extend their hunting hours into the day to feed their young, this is quite common during baby season and also during inclimate weather... I'm personally dealing with a coyote that is stalking my pasture at all hours of the day and night right now, my llamas are keeping it at bay but it's still pushing the issue...
     
  6. DuckGirl77

    DuckGirl77 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for telling me that. I had no idea foxes were so hard to keep out! I've heard that some predators can get the chickens through the fence, too. Is that true? If it is, how should I set up my fence to keep out predators? I have plenty of welded wire, so is there some way to get it stapled up for a "roof"? And should there be an electric fence around the welded wire one or some strands of wire to keep the predators from grabbing them through the fence?
    Thank you very much for your knowledge; I still can't believe this happened! I wish there was some way to let every chicken owner know that this is a threat, even though they may not think it is.
     
  7. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Overrun With Chickens

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    I use electric. We use Premier1 48 inch with 0.5 joule charger. Their kits come with stronger posts for corners to aid in preventing sagging. We have a high predator area and not had a problem. I know coyote can clear a high fence but the fact is if it's the first fence you put up they wont jump it. This is due to them investigating it first. A new to them barrier will be investigate, animals literally nose around it and will be shocked. That shock will train all the predators to stay wide of the fence and the thought of jumping it wont cross their minds. Same goes for the chickens in it. First half day they get shocked constantly then stay at least a foot away from it at all times. They will not want to fly over it as they think they'll get shocked there too.
     
  8. MeepBeep

    MeepBeep Chillin' With My Peeps


    Yes, raccoons will reach through the fence and if they can get a hold of a bird they will rip it apart and pull it piece by piece through the fence...

    Again this is why 1/2" hardware cloth is recommended for predator proofing, not fencing...

    That is one option, just make sure there are no roosting areas close to the top where a raccoon could get a hold of a bird...

    There are lots of different ways to setup electric, different way for different predators... But, electric alone is not fool proof it has it's faults, you need to keep all vegetation trimmed in the area as it can easily short out the wire, animals with thick coats of fur can avoid shock, if you use a one wire system dry soil can prevent grounding and thus prevent shocking, two wire systems require both wires to be touched so smaller predators can sometimes slip between... Also check your area for the legality of electric fencing, in my area it's outlawed in most communities...
     
  9. DuckGirl77

    DuckGirl77 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My chickens aren't outside at night, but do you think I should put hardware cloth along the bottom of the fence anyways? How far up? About two feet?
    There are a few people on my street who use electric fencing for their horses, so I think it's allowed, but I'll look it up to make sure.
    What would be best for keeping them out? Electric fencing for a perimeter fence and hardware cloth around the bottom? Or just one of those? Thanks for all your help.
    Thank you very much for your input. One side of my fence is directly against the woods, so would it still work in that case, do you think?
     
  10. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Overrun With Chickens

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    Why would you need hardware cloth if your using electric? The coop openings need hardware cloth for weasels. The bottom wire of electric needs to be low enough to shock diggers like skunk and fox. If a hot wire is low enough no dig apron is needed. Since you have a 6 ft welded wire fence already put a wire no more than 6 inches from bottom for the dig proof and a wire standing off the top. To really ensure a bounding, climbing fox doesn't some how miss the top wire put another wire middle of fence. There are also gate handles for $2 each. The wire ties to one end and other clips to your end point. I used large nails in wood corner post on apiary. The handle has spring so it stays taught when clipped, can be easily removed from hook point for entry. I use all these things with 1 joule charger on our apiary for bear.

    Plastic insulated stand offs are about $7 for a bag of 25 and poywire is about $18 for a 600 ft roll. If your run is near an outlet you can get a plug in 0.5 Joule fencer for around $70. All these things are available at TSC. For ground rod just use a 3 ft length of copper water pipe or rebar or whatever you have that's long, metal and able to be hammered into the ground. You can get less powerful chargers but do research to ensure you will put out 4K Volts using them. 0.5 Joule will deliver 6K volt peak so with a few grounding points you'll still be above 4K volts. Branches and grass need to be cut away from the electric as they will ground out the fence. As grass grows the low wire will start grounding out taking the 6K peak down. The more grounding points the less output voltage. Using a 0.5 Joule gives plenty of time to mow your lawn or tend to grounding issues. It takes a lot of contact to get it below 4K where electric will not deter determined animals.
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2016
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