New Backyard Chicken Owner

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by afairleigh, Aug 2, 2013.

  1. afairleigh

    afairleigh Hatching

    Jul 30, 2013
    My birthday was in July and I got a chicken coop which I excitedly assembled with my husband, James. We purchased 2 chickens at Callahan's last Saturday and were SO excited to get started (our kids helped pick them out and take care of them) Our beautiful chickens free ranged in our backyard during the day and began to learn their chicken coop and were locked up every night. One of the chickens began to lay eggs, which we so graciously ate these delicious eggs for breakfast. We thought we critter proofed our coop by putting bungee cords/bricks on top around every levered door, locked up the coop at night with a nice lock and wire and Wednesday morning I went out in the morning to feed them and let them out, they were slaughtered by a curious raccoon. One was still alive which I had to have euthanized and I can't quit crying over all of this. Turns out the raccoon pushed up a board from the bottom of the house where they lay eggs and got in that way.
    If anyone lives in Austin and is willing to offer input to how we can make our chicken coop predator proof, I sure could use the input as I certainly didn't intend for this to happen to our beautiful chickens and I don't want to ever repeat this process.
    I'm wanting to get started in the next month. If anyone is moving soon and needs to pass along chickens I'd love the opportunity to care for them once our coop is proofed. I am so sorry these poor chickens had to learn from our mistake and we would have never thought to secure the board on the underneath part of the coop but now we will. We will most likely build a big cage/coop with a enclosed ceiling and put the coop inside of that and still let them free range during the day.
    If anyone has any left over coop wire or can recommend coop wire, any and all suggestions are appreciated.
    Thanks and I'm so excited to find this support online!
  2. Welcome to BYC glad you joined us!
  3. liz9910

    liz9910 Crowing

    Apr 8, 2012
    Northern California
  4. BantamFan4Life

    BantamFan4Life LOOK WHAT YOU MADE ME DO.

    Jun 15, 2012
  5. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years.

    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
    [​IMG]If you are using chicken wire, it is too flimsy to protect anything. It will keep chickens in but not keep predators out. You really need 1/2inch hardware cloth around the perimeter of the run , from ground to 18" or so upward - to keep preds(like raccoons) from reaching in and biting off any parts they can snag. They do horrific damage/death to anything they can reach. If you can run electric wire around coop and outside of run it will send some preds packing.

    Once a predator is successful they will keep coming back until the food source is depleted or they just can't manage to get in again.

    Mr MKK FARMS Crowing

    Sep 27, 2012
    Welcome to BYC! Glad you joined us! [​IMG]
  7. redsoxs

    redsoxs Crowing

    Jul 17, 2011
    North Central Kansas
    Greetings from Kansas, afairleigh, and a belated [​IMG]! Great to have you with us!

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