How to Keep Snakes Out of your Chicken Coop?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by tonstr258, Oct 13, 2018.

  1. tonstr258

    tonstr258 In the Brooder

    Jul 10, 2017
    I have a chicken coop in my backyard. Recently I saw a snake near my chicken cop. I am worried about my chicken and their eggs. Anyone have any idea how I can keep snakes out of my chicken coop.

    Thanks in advance.
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 13, 2018
  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Free Ranging

    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    It depends on the construction and setup. I'm not sure it is possible to completely keep them out. As you know, they can climb almost anything and get in tight holes. However, they should only have access during the day. The coop should be tight enough at night to keep them out. I had snakes in two different coops this year. Unless you live where there are huge constrictors, they aren't a threat to chickens but they do like to eat eggs. They'll also eat mice/rats, insects and spiders.
    Collect eggs often and they won't have any attraction to invite them in except for an inspection.
    Here is one of my visiting neighbors.
    Black snake in coop nest.jpg
    TwoCrows, PrettyChickens15 and Rick M like this.
  3. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    Did you happen to identify the snake, what variety? The size of the chicken or egg determines how big a snake needs to be to be a threat. A lot of snakes can eat eggs or really small chicks. The size of a snake goes a long way to determine how big a threat it is.

    As Canoe said it can be really challenging to keep snakes out, the can show up any time, night or day. And they can get through some really small holes. During the day if a chicken can come and go a snake can also.

    One big reason snakes show up is that they are hunting mice. If you have mice you are likely to have snakes looking for them. Once they are there they will not refuse a meal of eggs or baby chicks. So a way to help keep snakes away is to control mice.

    Snakes don't like to expose themselves that much, they can be prey themselves. So try to keep the area around the coop cleaned up. Keep it mowed and don't have areas of trash piled up. That should help with mice too.

    It's hard to keep eggs collected during the day but try to not leave them in the coop overnight. I consider that an invitation to snakes and other egg-eating predators to try to get in and get a reward if they make it.

    I see snakes a lot and am glad to have them around as long as they are not poisonous or in the coop. Depending on the size they might eat various rodents or bugs I don't want around. If they are in the coop that's a different story. I have a friend that wants me to relocate those to her property so I do if I can catch them. Sometimes they escape which often shows me where I need to patch a hole. I'm not going to try to catch a poisonous snake and will not leave that threat around so those die.

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