Rat Proofing and Chicken Door!

Gabtods

Chirping
May 16, 2020
45
36
64
PNW
Okay, so we're new to chickens. I had them as kid on a farm but this is our family's first backyard flock! I'm super excited, and the chicks will be moving out to their coop/run this week. I can handle a lot of things, but RATS are my biggest fear!! And we live in the PNW so they're around! We've used the 1/2inch hardware cloth, built a coop from scratch left a 2 foot skirt on the ground.... anything else I'm missing?

Also, if the chicken coop door opens up in to the chicken run, can the door be left open at night ( weather permitting of course)? Debating the need for an automatic door.
Thanks!
 

Al Gerhart

Songster
9 Years
Sep 29, 2011
738
636
241
Oklahoma City
A quarter sized hole is enough for an adult rat to squeeze through and they can chew through concrete, aluminum, thick wood, anything but steel and hardware cloth. I suppose if you have the entire coop and run that tight including the floor covered in hardware cloth you might have a chance at keeping them out.

Keeping the feed away from the rats is the only really iron clad method of preventing rats from colonizing a coop. For that you need a proper treadle feeder.
 

Gabtods

Chirping
May 16, 2020
45
36
64
PNW
A quarter sized hole is enough for an adult rat to squeeze through and they can chew through concrete, aluminum, thick wood, anything but steel and hardware cloth. I suppose if you have the entire coop and run that tight including the floor covered in hardware cloth you might have a chance at keeping them out.

Keeping the feed away from the rats is the only really iron clad method of preventing rats from colonizing a coop. For that you need a proper treadle feeder.

Thanks! Don’t have hardware cloth on the bottom but do have a skirt and planning on sealing food at night so hopefully that helps
 

Rickischickies

Hatching
May 14, 2021
1
1
5
I can second this... the rats eat during the day! Brazen!! Ive been cutting off their night time food supply and today I saw an extra large rat scare off my bantam hens in order to feed in broad daylight. I’m thinking now that I will have to take things to the next level!
 

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