Predator proofing

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by BigBen, Mar 8, 2009.

  1. BigBen

    BigBen Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 29, 2008
    Smithfield,RI
    I just bought a 6x12 chain link dog run to use as a chicken run.
    I have a lot of Skunks,Fox,coyote,and Fisher Cats...so now someone says I need to be watch for Weasels.
    I am going to put a plywood roof with shingles for the top and was thinking of buying a 6x50 ft roll of 1 inch chicken wire and zip tying it to the inside of the run and then folding a 2ft section and attaching it to the bottom of the fence and staking it 18 inches out to stop animals from digging there way in.
    Am I missing anything?
    I have thought about raising chickens and saved for a long time. I would be devastated to finally do it and loose my birds to predators.
     
  2. Chickenfortress

    Chickenfortress Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 8, 2008
    If you have weasles, skip the chickenwire and switch to 1/2 square welded wire. I'd tie it to the inside of the chainlink to get the protection of the heavier wire out where bigger animals could rip a hole that a smaller one will get through later.
     
  3. hensonly

    hensonly Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 15, 2008
    upstate NY
    I agree that the smaller-mesh, heavier wire would be better. You might think about burying the wire at the bottom, not just laying it on the ground, which is what it sounded like you plan to do.

    Besides predators digging in, my hens dust bathe right next to the fence of my run - they have nearly dug themselves out under the fence at times, I'm always filling in their holes. I finally put bricks around the inside perimeter of the run to keep them off the edge. I still have to check, because now they dust bathe alonside the bricks, and the bricks fall into the holes they make! Patio blocks would have been better than bricks, but I had the bricks already, so that's what I used.

    My coop was already built, so I didn't have as many options for changing it as I would have if I'd built it. ON the other hand, it held hens for five or six years, and not a single hen was lost to predators, so I knew it was secure as is. When I build the new one (in progress) I will bury wire, and all that sort of thing. Don't want to ruin our perfect record now!

    Is the run going to be attached to a chicken house? Or will there be a house inside the run? Or what? Most of your predator problems would probably be at night - best if the hens are locked securely inside solid walls (and floor and roof) at night.

    Check out the coop design/construction thread for ideas.

    good luck!!! Enjoy your chirps!
     
  4. BigBen

    BigBen Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 29, 2008
    Smithfield,RI
    It will be attached to there house. I have a stack of 18x18"cement pavers that I will put all around the inside of the wire run.
    That way they can't find there way out and a predator will have to dig 3 feet under the wire on the outside and the pavers on the inside.
    I am installing 7 insulated windows with screens and am going to put the wire mesh over the windows from the inside. That way in the summer nothing can rip through the screen to get in.
     

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