Netting to prevent loss to raptors

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Rt66Kix, Feb 21, 2017.

  1. I am new to keeping chickens, and appreciate all the wonderful threads on BYC. After a lot of research, this is my plan.

    We have about an acre of yard, with big trees and retaining walls/flower beds. The terrain does roll, as seen in this picture. (The horses were there for the day; it was my turn to mow and this is how I did it! [​IMG] They went back to the boarding barn that night.)
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    I am going to use a kid's playhouse for my coop, and my husband is going to make a sturdy "chicken dolly" so I can move it around. Plan to buy 100' of Premier 1 PoultryPlus electric netting so the ladies can be moved around. Bug control is high on my list, as well as egg production. The chickens will be confined to the coop at night; out during the day. We have a ton of predators; the normal coons, coyotes, foxes and possums. Also there are several raptors; a bald eagle has been spotted several times across the road, and we have at least one pair of red-tailed hawks we see regularly roosting in our trees. The home's previous owner had some sort of large bird swoop down and pick up their small dog. Dog was too heavy for bird so he was dropped; survived the attack with hefty vet bills, though. [​IMG]

    I feel I need some sort of netting to cover the "paddock", even during the day. When I called Premier they said the netting should not touch the fence. Any suggestions as to what type of netting, and how to make a "frame" to keep it off the fence?

    Points to consider:
    1. I will be moving the paddock as the grass is grazed/scratched up. I plan to have 4-6 hens, so maybe every 7-10 days fence will be relocated.
    2. This needs to be something that I can do myself; my husband works a lot, and has odd hours so I want to be independent.
    3. Any thoughts/suggestions about setting up this type of fencing on the rolling terrain as seen in the photos?

    Thanks so much!
     
  2. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Welcome to BYC!

    Gonna be pretty darn hard(I'd say close to impossible) to put netting over a portable electric poultry fence.
    Most folks who free range provide other means of cover for chooks to hide from BOP's.

    Might find some ideas in the threads found with this search link:
    Advanced search>titles only> hawk protection

    Might think about a tractor instead....free, even partially free, ranging has it's risks.
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2017
  3. The chicken coop on it's dolly will be in the paddock, and since it will be off the ground the chickens can get underneath it. I thought about taking a long strip of netting and making a sort of awning that would attach to the coop. Something like what's on RV and travel trailers. I get the coop inside the paddock, then unroll the netting and drive uprights of some sort of firm material into the ground.

    Thanks for the link to the hawk protection! I appreciate it very much!
     
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Might work.....might need guy wires on the netting stakes depending on how heavy the netting is.
    Could get the aerial netting stakes same as the poultry fencing stakes, they sell extras.
    Then if you placed the coop, placed the aerial netting and it's stakes, and then got the poultry fencing close you could tie off the aerial guy wires to the fencing stakes.
    It would be a lot to move around...might get old fast.
     

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