Possom in the coop, my first predator problem!

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by kla37, Jan 2, 2012.

  1. kla37

    kla37 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 18, 2010
    Hillsborough, NC USA
    I'm traumatized, so I just have to share. CRAZY 24 hours!!! A possum got in my chicken coop last night. I was outside at midnight, and heard a huge screaming ruckus in the chicken coop. I ran down there and let my 8 chickens out who were freaking out by the door to their run. There was lots of running around and rounding up the girls after I let them out of their run. Most of them tried to hide in the bushes and in dark corners by the fences. It took about two hours to get them all up on the deck, and they clustered next to our sliding door to our kitchen. They had to sleep on the deck since the possum wouldn't come out of the run and coop. I of course, had to stay up all night to watch over them. I just couldn't sleep knowing they were exposed like that. Poor babies! Lots of lost feathers, and only one had an injury, a big scratch on her back. I'm SO glad I was outside. It could have been a major bloodbath. Despite my best efforts, the possum would NOT come out and was not happy with us trying to get him out, so a friend with a nice revolver came over and dispatched him quickly this afternoon. I did a deep clean of the coop after that, and my girls didn't want to go back in there tonight at all, and I don't blame them, but I picked them up one by one, showed them the nice clean safe coop, and they finally settled down for the night. This was my first predator problem with my chickens, and I'm going to do what I can to make sure it's my last! Only one latch had not caught properly, and the doors to the front opened just enough to let that nasty creature in. I have it super secured tonight, with padlocks, and I'm hoping this never happens again. I managed to put some neosporin on the injury to the one chicken, and I'm going to keep a close eye on her. It was SCARY!!!
     
  2. Lady Chickadee

    Lady Chickadee Rocky Top Silkies

    883
    0
    119
    Apr 1, 2011
    Central Kentucky
    Its a good thing you were outside, hopefully nothing like that will happen again. I hope your chicken that has the scratch on her back gets better!Neosporin sounds good, another thing you could try is vetericyn , it works really good and can pretty much heal anything.I use it with my chickens and other animals whenever they're hurt and it always works.
     
  3. christineavatar

    christineavatar Chillin' With My Peeps

    339
    1
    114
    May 1, 2011
    Bolinas, CA
    I am so glad to hear that there were no fatalities. Use caution, though. Where there is one there are others and now they know where your coop is. I use this:
    http://www.niteguard.com/pages/Order/
    I have put up four, one on each side of the coop. It finally stopped the occasional intrusion.
     
  4. abbylane35

    abbylane35 Chillin' With My Peeps

    113
    2
    81
    Nov 13, 2011
    Lodi, New York
    I agree with Christine...I use the niteguard too. Had a big problem with intruders attempting to get into the coop last year (flashed the spotlight out there and saw racoons all over!) Did a lot of trapping, disposing, etc....but the niteguard seems to keep predators at bay. The packaging will tell you how high you need to put the devices depending on what predator you are trying to keep out.

    Good luck!
     
  5. kla37

    kla37 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 18, 2010
    Hillsborough, NC USA
    Thanks, I am definitely getting that niteguard apparatus! I thought I had the Ft. Knox of chicken coops, but it just goes to show that you can't ever be too careful! Just one latch unsecured allowed that spawn of satan to wriggle in under the double doors. Going to clean Hermione's wound again in the am with saline, and I'm going to get some vetericyn at the feed store tomorrow!
     
  6. nwfl

    nwfl Chillin' With My Peeps

    316
    6
    103
    Jan 4, 2011
    Northwest Florida
    it might be wise to get a $25 live trap special at tsc when they go on sale again. i keep 4 traps baited and set inside and ouside of the coop areas. occasionaly one of my ladies gets inside but if you check on yours a couple of times before night roost they arent inside long. we caught a few a week our second year of chickens and occasionally each spring there is a flush of critters. now we catch one or two a month.but there is a lot of development occuring out our way now, too. here is our prettiest catch. i have had some bad experiences too. my sympathies and good luck.

    [​IMG]
     
  7. kla37

    kla37 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 18, 2010
    Hillsborough, NC USA
    I think I will get a couple of traps. I could set them up out in the woods around our home, that might yield some good results. But once they're in, and won't come out, it's the .22 for them.
     
  8. oldiabird

    oldiabird Chillin' With My Peeps

    112
    0
    88
    Jan 30, 2011
    Audubon, Iowa
    Quote:I think I have probably got a dozen oppossums, most of the time they have only been after eggs, but a .22 rifle put to their mouth, they have always opened there mouths and took their medicine well, lead poisoning- gun style! Haven't had any for a while(knock on wood) !!! [​IMG]
     
  9. kla37

    kla37 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 18, 2010
    Hillsborough, NC USA
    Quote:I think I have probably got a dozen oppossums, most of the time they have only been after eggs, but a .22 rifle put to their mouth, they have always opened there mouths and took their medicine well, lead poisoning- gun style! Haven't had any for a while(knock on wood) !!! [​IMG]

    Where's the "LIKE" button on here? [​IMG]
     
  10. Bear Foot Farm

    Bear Foot Farm Overrun With Chickens

    5,545
    223
    288
    Mar 31, 2008
    Grifton NC
    I could set them up out in the woods around our home, that might yield some good results.

    I'd be very careful about putting them very far away from the coop.

    It's legal to trap problem predators any time , but a trap "out in the woods" could be considered trapping out of season​
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by