How to secure: Weasel&Coon on the loose

songbirdfarms

Chirping
Aug 20, 2019
37
72
55
Saginaw, MI
Have a weasel AND a coon snoopin my coop and run. It’s Fort Knox except the run entrance. Can’t figure out how to weasel proof as the latch needs more than one inch either way to open, plus the coon could operate the latch.
Suggestions appreciated! My farm is two miles from home - I gotta get this done before tonight!
 

Attachments

Folly's place

Crossing the Road
Sep 13, 2011
17,100
21,908
906
southern Michigan
You can't have any openings larger that 1/2" anywhere to be safe. Period. And critters can pull that hardware cloth off, and open your latch.
I hope your birds have a safe coop, because that run isn't going to protect them!
Properly set up electric fencing works well against most ground predators, although maybe not weasels.
Otherwise, the hardware cloth needs to be stapled in with fence staples, and then covered with 1"x4" boards screwed into the run framing, or some equally secure attachments. Reframe or replace the door, remembering that maximum 1/2" maximum opening all the way around, and an actual lock.
If necessary, bring your birds into a safer place until this is fixed, or you may loose them all one evening.
Mary
 

azygous

Crossing the Road
Dec 11, 2009
17,820
20,791
912
Colorado Rockies
You need to give up being able to swing the gate open in both directions. As both @WannaBeHillBilly and @Folly's place have pointed out, that gap must be closed with something immovable. The gate must fit flush against whatever you secure over that gap. Decide which way the gate should open, inward or outward, and secure the gap from the opposite side.

Also, don't forget the bottom of the gate. A weasel will have no problem digging under unless you rig up a sill that the gate bottom can close against.

I have a run that is metal posts and metal fencing, and it's a real challenge finding a way to secure wood to metal. I've had good luck with old fashioned baling wire to secure wood pieces to my metal, then it's easy from there to use screws and other such hardware to finish the project.
 

songbirdfarms

Chirping
Aug 20, 2019
37
72
55
Saginaw, MI
You can't have any openings larger that 1/2" anywhere to be safe. Period. And critters can pull that hardware cloth off, and open your latch.
I hope your birds have a safe coop, because that run isn't going to protect them!
Properly set up electric fencing works well against most ground predators, although maybe not weasels.
Otherwise, the hardware cloth needs to be stapled in with fence staples, and then covered with 1"x4" boards screwed into the run framing, or some equally secure attachments. Reframe or replace the door, remembering that maximum 1/2" maximum opening all the way around, and an actual lock.
If necessary, bring your birds into a safer place until this is fixed, or you may loose them all one evening.
Mary
Thank you. My coop is SUPER safe. It’s during the day I am worried about- but that includes dusk so I know I have a lot to worry about there. The hardware cloth is secured to the metal frame with zip ties at every gap around the walls and the top is clothed over too. Are the ties inferior?
 

roosterhavoc

Crossing the Road
Jan 5, 2012
18,678
32,608
971
Thank you. My coop is SUPER safe. It’s during the day I am worried about- but that includes dusk so I know I have a lot to worry about there. The hardware cloth is secured to the metal frame with zip ties at every gap around the walls and the top is clothed over too. Are the ties inferior?
Yes the zip ties can be chewed through in seconds. It would be cheaper and faster to just trap the raccoons and weasel.
 
Last edited:

wyoDreamer

Crowing
Nov 10, 2010
4,715
5,707
411
NE Wisconsin
Maybe you could put a flap of something over the latch - like a thick rubber scrap. something you will need to bend up out of the way to get to the latch. It will make it harder for the coon to get his hands on the latch and flip it up.
I vote for a 2x4 installed on the inside of the coop so the gate will sit tight against it. You want the door to swing out - once you get litter build-up against the inside of the gate you will not be able to swing the gate inward to open it. That also would let you partially bury a piece of wood along the door inside the coop to prevent digging in.
 
Top Bottom