Research & Planning: NE FL predators list?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by dfr1973, Nov 29, 2011.

  1. dfr1973

    dfr1973 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 20, 2011
    rural central FL
    We'll be moving to the NE Florida pinewoods after hubby gets out of the army. I am not from that area, and hubby was raised in Jacksonville metro, so neither of us are overly familiar with what predators we will be dealing with when we move out into the rural area. I've been reading threads to try to make up a list of what we'll be dealing with so I can plan my Fortress Chicken to defend. Here is what I have so far:
    bobcats (!!)
    loose/stray dogs
    loose/stray cats

    snakes (which kinds? I've heard eastern rattlers?)

    I'm obviously missing predatory birds here. Are skunks and possums in the area?

    We're looking in Bradford, Clay, and Putnam counties, and I would love to have property very near a state forest (yeah, that will complicate things). My goal is not feed a single predator - they will be MY breakfast eggs and MY dinner! I am so ready to get out of this city, but have to cool my heels for another year so I have plenty of time to research and plan.
  2. Kevin565

    Kevin565 Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    Dec 22, 2009
    I do believe their are skunks and possums in that area. Here are the snakes native to Florida that are venomous:

    Timber Rattlesnake
    Eastern Coral Snake
    Dusky Pigmy Rattlesnake
    Southern Copperhead
    Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake
  3. blazensasha

    blazensasha Out Of The Brooder

    Jun 4, 2011
    Old Miakka,FL
    they do have skunks and possums there,as far as snakes go, Kevins right.But those dang corn snakes are the worst always swallowing up your eggs. [​IMG]
  4. florida lee

    florida lee Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 6, 2011
    YEP, all the above. Don't neglect the top of the run. Some of these animals will climb up and over. Some are good diggers also. My coop has a wooden floor so they are very safe in there, however my coop leaves a lot to be desired. so they are locked up every night in the coop. Mine do not free range, their current run is 14 x 45 and I'm getting ready to expand that.
    Don't forget to plan for the Florida weather. A good wide overhang on your roof will help keep coop dry with all our rains and help with cooling in the summer.
    Good luck and happy/fun planning.
  5. dfr1973

    dfr1973 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 20, 2011
    rural central FL
    lee, the weather was my first thought! Hot and humid, rather mild winters, but with the "fun" of severe storms (as if we don't have those here) and the potential for hurricanes (hence looking on the west side of the St John's River). Sounds a lot like the few years I lived in the East Texas Pineywoods. Right now there's a drought hitting the area so ponds, creeks, and even some lakes have dried up ... so I am hunting up flood plain maps for these three counties to compare the extremes.

    Corn snakes ... not what comes to mind as a predator! We have corns and kings around here, and those skinny buggers can fit into places even a mouse has trouble squeezing through. Both are more known for eating other reptiles as well as small rodents ... I hadn't been aware of eggs. Filed for future reference - thank you.

    So far: the run needs overhead cover from at least climbing varmints (coons, possums) with flashy stuff to ward off birds. I'll need a dig-proof skirt (coons, coyotes) that is secured to the ground. Chicken wire to keep the birds in with hardware cloth to keep predators out. Coop needs to be tight to keep out larger rodents, predators, but well-ventilated with overhang. Storage room the same. I have an image forming in my mind already, just trying to check against what I'll be likely to be dealing with, both probable and possible.

    On the plus side, I don't think I'll need to plan around blizzards! LOL
  6. harveyhorses

    harveyhorses Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 16, 2010
    You might want to think about electric fence, it will keep varmints from even thinking about digging, or climbing. VERY effective.
    My run is covered too, I have tarps so they can hang out and not get 'weathered' on) and this summer discovered shade cloth ,for when the sun comes in from the sides. Great stuff. Happy planning
  7. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

    Nov 27, 2008
    Jacksonville, Florida
    Possums, coons, hawks, and the yellow rat snake will be your main predators. I live 20 minutes north from Jax.

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