I think pests are eating my chickens' food!

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by terbear1967, Jun 26, 2010.

  1. terbear1967

    terbear1967 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 14, 2010
    Williamsburg, VA
    We were leaving the food container down in the run for the girls all the time, for them to eat whenever they wanted. The other day we noticed that our four layers were going through A LOT of food. Because they were going through so much food and we thought it might be rats, we stored their food dish in our metal food container last night. First thing this morning I laid their food out. This afternoon I went to check on them in this heat and their food container is empty! Is it possible that a rodent would come in run during the day to clean them out? I cannot imagine four chickens eating so much food. Is hanging a metal food container from the center of their run a good idea for keeping the rats out of the food, or will the little boogers just jump on the container? Thanks for any advice.
     
  2. max101

    max101 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Rats will climb, jump and I think even a cart wheel to get to food lol

    A deterrent is to put paprika in the chooks food.
    The hot powder doesn't worry the chickens but the rats or mice dont like it

    Hope this helps
    I have read that is you give the rats/mice peanut butter with plaster of paris mixed in with it
    when the rodents drinks something the plaster sets and the rodents die

    You will have to be super careful that the chickens dont get to the stuff though

    best of luck
     
  3. terbear1967

    terbear1967 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 14, 2010
    Williamsburg, VA
    Thank you very much for the paprika idea!! Definitely have that in the pantry and will give it a whirl. :eek:)
     
  4. digitS'

    digitS' Chillin' With My Peeps

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    There may be a difference in terms: Australian & American.

    My understanding is that it's the hot pepper that deters rodents. Paprika in US stores is so mild that it is hard to know that it IS from a capsicum pepper.

    Load it up with cayenne, terbear! That should be worth a try.

    Steve

    ETA: and, set the traps.
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2010
  5. terbear1967

    terbear1967 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 14, 2010
    Williamsburg, VA
    Awesome! It's hard to believe that cayenne will not hurt the girls, but I will give it a try!! Thanks so much!! :eek:)
     
  6. Bear Foot Farm

    Bear Foot Farm Overrun With Chickens

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    Grifton NC
    We were leaving the food container down in the run

    Move it inside the coop.

    It's probably being eaten by wild birds more than rats during the day​
     
  7. terbear1967

    terbear1967 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 14, 2010
    Williamsburg, VA
    We have an enclosed run (chicken wire). Do you think it could still be birds? I hadn't thought about that.
     
  8. Chris09

    Chris09 Circle (M) Ranch

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    I believe it is the wild birds also..
    What kind of wire do you have on your run..

    I seen Sparrows and chickadees go right through chick wire...


    Chris
     
  9. RECE*2C*

    RECE*2C* Out Of The Brooder

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    i also vote birds since we got chickens our back yard has been filled with them and birds can squeeze in to pretty small holes they eat with my chickens but i dont really mind if the chickens are ok with it [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2010
  10. Bear Foot Farm

    Bear Foot Farm Overrun With Chickens

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    they eat with my chickens but i dont really mind if the chickens are ok with it

    They carry mites and diseases that can be passed to your chickens​
     

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