Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by thatsdebatable, Aug 4, 2016.

  1. thatsdebatable

    thatsdebatable Hatching

    Aug 3, 2016
    Any ideas on how to keep raccoons from coming and trying to attack my keets at night? My family has had problems with raccoons ever since we let our keets outside in a pen. The walls of the pen are made of chicken wire, but it seems that the raccoon is reaching through the wall and hurting the keets. We're planning on putting smaller chicken wire that the raccoon can't reach through, but are there any other things we could do to keep raccoons away?
  2. Folly's place

    Folly's place Free Ranging

    Sep 13, 2011
    southern Michigan
    Welcome! Chicken wire WILL NOT keep predators out! Your birds need to be in a truly safe place while your pen/ coop gets a major upgrade. A dig- proof foundation, well attached hardware cloth, with 2"x4" woven wire on top, no openings anywhere larger than 1/2" diameter. Otherwise, your poor birds will likely get torn apart. Mary
  3. Millworker26

    Millworker26 In the Brooder

    Jun 25, 2016
    SE PA
    1. Surround the enclosure with 1/4" hatdware cloth that predator can't reach through
    2. Bury the fencing material, or form an apron to deter tunneling predators
    3. Provide a predator proof coop and lock up birds at night
    4. Trap and kill raccoons. Do not relocate.

    If your problem is raccoons they (plural) will come back every night and will eventually kill the birds.
  4. Howard E

    Howard E Crowing

    Feb 18, 2016

    Do you mean raccoons like these? I'm sure they have tried....many times. But so far, they have not been able to breach the 1/2" x 1" - 14 gauge welded wire opening, nor the 1" x 2" 14 gauge welded wire apron that surrounds the house. Not saying they never will, it's just they never have. Chicken wire? I imagine they would have blown through that the first night.


  5. andysgirl

    andysgirl In the Brooder

    Jul 8, 2016
    Wow shoot that thing!
  6. KoopOnTruckin

    KoopOnTruckin Songster

    Jun 17, 2016
    East Orlando, FL
    Raccoons are smart, they learn from the obstacles you put in front of them. They're persistent, so they'll keep coming back until they realize there is nothing to come back to. Staples and chicken wire won't hold them, they will use their nails to pick at the staples and bend the wire until they can get inside. And they love chicken, they'll even reach their hand in and pop the chickens' heads right off - not sure if it's for fun or what.

    I have a game camera outside my perimeter fence, and I've seen them coming around that fence 2-3 times a night, looking for weak spots. Once they get through that fence, they smell my dogs, so I've kept them from getting too close to the coop. Once they're at the outside run of the coop, they'd have to break through the chicken wire (without my dogs hearing it), then they face the actual coop with 1/4" hardware cloth screwed to a metal frame. I've trapped probably 2 dozen in the past year and killed 3 in the past few weeks that were brazen enough to try to climb my perimeter fence at dusk while I was outside.

    I've heard a lot of good things about electric fences, I just haven't tried it myself, yet.
  7. Raccoons will continue to return and continue to try and find a weakness pretty much every night... They are also very intelligent and will notice small changes almost instantly and attack that change as a possible new weakness while they also re-test other weaknesses they believe exist... And they will get smarter with time, a latch on a door that fooled them one year might not fool them the next as they keep trying to figure it out night after night... And again due to their level of intelligence once they figure out something they remember how they did it, so that dumb luck chance at flipping the latch and opening the door won't be dumb luck the next time as they learned...

    This leaves you with two choices, permanently remove the raccoon before it gains entry or fortify the coop and hope they don't gain entry...

    As said chicken wire won't stop a raccoon, if not reaching through they will eventually rip it apart with their teeth and paws, 1/2" or 1/4" hardware cloth is a much better option... Yes, a very determined predator can still get through the hardware mesh but it's exponentially safer than chicken wire and a vast majority of predators will give up long before the hardware cloth fails...

  8. One thing to note, if the raccoon realizes the dog can't get to them because it's on the other side of the fence or what not they will ignore the dog... I had a raccoon earlier this year who would approach the backyard fence and taunt the dog, if the dog was in the backyard and charged the fence the coon would skip my yard that night, but if the raccoon noticed the dog was in the kennel and not charging the yard fence it would jump the fence and walk right past the kennel and do it's thing in my backyard all the while laughing at the dog...
  9. Millworker26

    Millworker26 In the Brooder

    Jun 25, 2016
    SE PA
    Click the link at the top of your browser that says 'Worst Predator.' There's a reason why raccoon is ranked #1 worst predator. Take it seriously and listen to what these folks are saying. Nobody wants to see you lose any bids.
  10. centrarchid

    centrarchid Free Ranging

    Sep 19, 2009
    Holts Summit, Missouri

    and [*] Keep roosting birds a foot or more from coop perimeter / wall raccoon has access to.

    In the past I could have raccoons coming in every night to consume feed and get into compost pile. They would check chicken pens but would not put serious effort into going after a bird it could directly detect by sight or smell unless the bird was in reach. The chewing through the wire was reserved for situations where the chicken was in direct contact with wire. When so motivated even hardware cloth did not stop raccoon.

    [*] Dog running about outside is also effective.

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