I'm Building a new feeder... how high can mice reach?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Nifty-Chicken, Jan 18, 2007.

  1. Nifty-Chicken

    Nifty-Chicken Administrator

    I'm going to be building a new feeder that I can put inside my chicken's coop. I'm going to hang it from the ceiling in hopes to keep mice out as much as possible. I know I may still have problems with rats, but here's my question:

    How high can mice reach?

    What about rats?

    Or am I going to loose this battle since both animals may be able to just jump into the feeder?

    I guess I could get creative and build something like this (https://www.backyardchickens.com/LC-feeders.html) but I don't have time to train all my girls to use it! [​IMG]

    What do ya'll do to keep the vermin from snacking on your chicken food at night?
  2. nmantime

    nmantime Songster

    Jan 12, 2007
    S.F. Bay Area
    Not sure what the height is best, i just place mine about the height of the shortest girls back. I had a mice problem for a minute then they seemed to disappear. I was cleaning out the coop one day and moved a bag of wood chips that had been there for a while and kept wondering why the girls were underfoot while i'm working (my vanity led me to think they really liked thier big daddy). As soon as i moved the bag a couple of mice dashed out and the girls took off after them. I saw both mice caught and then pulled apart as the 'ladies' each wanted a piece... These 'ladies' are really little Velociraptors. You should have seen them gulping down the pieces. I check for dropping periodically and have not seen any in months. I have seen no evidence of rats yet! And i keep an eye open for them,since we have possum's, coons, foxes and now red tailed hawks and a family of owls moved in this winter. Don't know what type yet but they are biggun's. Sorry know this didn't answer your question but thats how win the mice battle...Oh by the way i use a 15lb tube style feeder i hang from the roof..

    Norm in N. CA
  3. Foghorn

    Foghorn Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    I guess I could get creative and build something like this (https://www.backyardchickens.com/LC-feeders.html) but I don't have time to train all my girls to use it!

    I took a look at that feeder and I think I see a potential flaw. Correct me if I am wrong. Suppose a chicken who is feeding on the side, not stepping on the front step, is still eating when the chicken who is on the step, steps off. The lid will close on her neck. I am not sure how heavy the lid is but it could possibly hurt her if it was heavy enough. Don't you think?​
  4. allen wranch

    allen wranch Crowing

    Jan 11, 2007
    San Marcos, TX
    You could use a hanging feeder at the maximum height for your birds and put a squirrel baffel on it. It should keep the mice and rats from crawling down whatever you hang it from. I am not sure if a rat could jump onto it from the ground ???
  5. Nifty-Chicken

    Nifty-Chicken Administrator

    Foghorn, yes, you are correct... probably not a good solution for multiple chickens. I guess if someone was really clever they could put some hydraulic shocks to slow down the decent of the lid... now that would be so cool!

    Carla, I may give that a try. Most of my girls are pretty tall, so I'm thinking I could get away with having things up pretty high.

    Of course, I'll still probably have a problem with feed that is pushed out of the feeder onto the ground. My girls always want the stuff from the feeder and won't eat the stuff off the ground unless they have to. I've got a pie tin to catch the stuff that is pecked out, but even that fills up and the same thing happens again.
  6. cindydj

    cindydj Songster

    Jan 16, 2007
    What if you use a large PVC pipe and hang it they can't crawl on it. At the fair they made a pig waterer this way and it was really neat...

    Good luck! I love the feeder, so how do you trainthem to eat out of it...
  7. eggchel

    eggchel Crowing

    Dec 26, 2006
    Both Coasts
    I think that a mouse can probably jump high enough to get into anything that a chicken can reach into. Mine are hanging 25 lb galvy feeders and I still find mice poo in them. :mad:

    I'd like to have a feeder with a timer door on it that closed at dusk when the chickens go to bed since I suspect that is when most of the mice are snacking.

    I really hate mice.

  8. allen wranch

    allen wranch Crowing

    Jan 11, 2007
    San Marcos, TX
    On another thought. If you close the doors everynight and are out at the coop anyway, can you drop the feeder into a metal trash can with lid for the night?
  9. bigzio

    bigzio Crowing

    Jan 20, 2007
    Pesky mice and rats really have a way to find feed.
    Keeeping a eye on the problem will lead you to a good solution.

    I just noticed tracks in the fresh snow from under the spruce trees close to the coop, leading to the coop.

    I haven't decided if I will poision or trap, but i need to nip this in the bud before the buggers multiply some more.

    Don't want my birds eating the feces.
  10. mice and rats can jump pretty high, and they can get into spaces as small as 1/4 of an inch, and can crawl up, around, through just about anything. I think your best bet is to put food away at night and try to remove any areas that may provide areas to nest for the buggers.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: