We have our first 5 silkies who are 12 weeks old. They have a small 6 X 3 1/2 foot coop and run so I let them out into the yard as much as possible. We live in a subdivision where the lots are 1 to 2 acres so they have a lot of space. We don't have a fence but are surrounded by trees. We back up to a beef angus farm so there is at least one fence behind our property. I am home a lot during the day and let them out as much as possible but check on them a lot, they don't go far but have been "exploring" more and more and I'm nervous about predators. So.... 1. Are they safe alone without a fence?? 2. Who/what might get them during the day? I've seen coyotes, hawks, turkey vultures and fox but am COMPLETELY CLUELESS about their habits and when they might attack. 3. All the dogs around here are guarded with invisible fences so they can't get out. But that won't keep the chicks out of their yard! So how far do chickens "ramble" from home base? I guess what I'm trying to find out, am I being just too lax about their free time? Should I hussle them in their coop everytime I go back inside?? I don't want a silkie rebellion on my hands....but I would be sick if any of them were killed as they are pets for our two daughters. Ok, mine too! thanks for any help!!