I have a problem with possums in my area. What can I do?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by axion_lotus, Jan 19, 2011.

  1. axion_lotus

    axion_lotus Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 19, 2011
    Central NC
    Last year, possums devastated my small flock of Rhode Island Reds and rescue ex-battery Cornish hens. It was horrible. I still have nightmares about it.

    I'm currently making repairs to my chicken house to make it safer, which includes filling in the place where they dug under the door with concrete (the rest of the chicken house has wire and sheet-metal buried almost 2 feet underground; underneath the door was the only place they could have dug through).

    My parents, who used to own chickens, reassure me that the precautions I've already done will be enough to protect my new flock I'm getting this spring, but I'm still worried about the same thing happening again. Are there any other methods I can use to keep my beloved pets safe?
     
  2. FireTigeris

    FireTigeris Tyger! Tyger! burning bright

    Make an apron around the chicken house and be sure there are no possums living there now... it be bad to lock them in with food water and chickens!

    Also are you going to have a covered run? do you already?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crepuscular

    Most
    critters can or will climb or fly over the run if its not covered.

    Dawn and Dusk are active times for chicken eaters.
     
  3. midget_farms

    midget_farms Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 15, 2008
    Dunlap Illinois
    Under the gate - lay chicken wire or hardware cloth out on the ground for 12 to 24 inches on both sides.

    Opossum & other diggers like fox cant dig through wire & are not smart enough to back up a foot.
     
  4. axion_lotus

    axion_lotus Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 19, 2011
    Central NC
    Quote:This might seem like a stupid question, but what's an 'apron'? It'd be strange if it were the same type of apron used in the kitchen! >w<;; I'm pretty sure it's not, though...silly me.

    Oh, and I go into my chicken house all the time, just to visit, I suppose. It's pretty bare at the moment, nowhere for a sneaky possum to hide and set up camp. It would be so awful to lock them in with my chickens! 0.o Just the thought makes me cringe.

    Yes, I have a covered run at the moment; it was just big enough for the small flock I had, but I intend to expand it for the new 15-bird flock I plan on obtaining in the spring.

    To be honest, I didn't have serious possum problems until I actually built a covered run, because I feared for their safety. For a long time I had an open run and everything was fine. (Guess if it ain't broke, don't fix it. <.<)I'm not sure if the covered run was the problem, or just that a clever possum moved into town or what. I know, a lot of people swear by covered runs, I just keep hearing conflicting advice on the subject of, to cover the run or not to cover the run. I'm still not sure what my new building plans will be on the matter. Further research is needed.

    Oh, and thanks so much for the useful tips, guys! Hopefully I'll not have to worry as much about possums proverbially knocking on my chicken house door.
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2011
  5. bgates1970

    bgates1970 Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 8, 2008
    Elko, MN
    An apron lays flat on the ground next to your fence. See link below:

    http://www.wirefenceonline.com/apronfence

    Also, make sure to tie it into your vertical fence tightly. I placed concrete pavers in the seam where the two are joined. You could even use a treated 2x4 around the whole bottom. You could staple the fence and 'apron' to the 2x4.
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2011
  6. Wild Trapper

    Wild Trapper Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 1, 2011
    Ohio
    Get a live trap and S3. If you live in a neighborhood that would frown on that, just relocate them if possible. Don't just knock down the web, kill the spider!
     
  7. aprophet

    aprophet Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 12, 2010
    chesapeake Va.
    Quote:Ya might check with the wildlife commission But I am pretty sure this is illegal in NC .
     
  8. Wild Trapper

    Wild Trapper Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 1, 2011
    Ohio
    Quote:Ya might check with the wildlife commission But I am pretty sure this is illegal in NC .

    S3 applies here. Unless you plan to broadcast what you're up to, it's kind of like the dog warden told a neighbor about letting his dog run and pester my hens. He told the neighbor that I had every right to just shoot his dog if they bothered my hens. We've not seen his dog running since. And, yes we have seen his dog on a leash when he came by and bought some eggs. If you're afraid to remove a critter that is damaging your crops or killing your livestock, then just have Critter Control come remove them. I have contacted officials about crop and livestock damage and if they agree then there isn't an issue with S3 (shoot, shovel, shut up).
     
  9. axion_lotus

    axion_lotus Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 19, 2011
    Central NC
    S3, I like this. >w<; I am bloodthirsty by no means, but I will kill a predator to protect my birds if I have to.

    I already had to kill two raccoons a few years backbefore the possums appeared. I was hoping I wouldn't have to do something like that again, so I'll try trapping and relocating first this time. But if they come back, those possums are toast. >.<
     
  10. plantmgr

    plantmgr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 13, 2010
    I have an opossum that has snuck into the chicken house three days in a row. It can squeeze through the chicken fence! I have a covered run, but the chicken wire has gaps of 2X4 (approx) inches wide. I saw it do it. I've had to drag it out with a garden rake because it hides under the nesting boxes. I gave it a good kick the second day and it scurried away, but came back the next. My dog couldn't reach it under the nesting boxes, but she really tried. I think she was scared of it. (another story for another time) [​IMG]

    I was determined to get it yesterday and had plans to call my cousin who could shoot it, but it didn't show up. I don't think I'm lucky enough for it to be gone for good. It's kind of small, and I haven't noticed any eggs eaten, unless he took them completely away - and the chickens are fine for now!

    I'm going to check again this afternoon. I wasn't at all nice with the rake. I can't imagine it wanting to go through that again, but I'm not sure how good their memories are.
     

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