Snakes and Chicks

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by NewOldMotherHen, May 10, 2011.

  1. NewOldMotherHen

    NewOldMotherHen Out Of The Brooder

    84
    0
    39
    Apr 23, 2011
    Shenandoah Valley
    I am renovating my old smokehouse into a hen house. It has a concrete floor. We have black rat snakes in this area that climb trees and eat bird eggs and baby birds from the nests and I'm sure they could find their way into my smokehouse. At what age/size would a chick be safe from being eaten by a black rat snake?
     
  2. Lee-in-Iowa

    Lee-in-Iowa Out Of The Brooder

    27
    0
    23
    Apr 22, 2011
    A friend of mine in Missouri finally just gave up on keeping chickens because the blacksnakes constantly ate her 4- and 5-week-old chickens from the henhouse. She had it pretty well protected but the snakes can just flatten themselves and get in anywhere. Even though she loves the "wild", she was so angry when she caught the predator and saw that row of lumps in the snake that were her young hens, she just chopped that snake up with a hoe.

    Someone else will have to tell you a "safe" age, but 4 or 5 weeks is definitely NOT safe from snakes eating them.
     
  3. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

    30,361
    160
    446
    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    I'd think they would have to be at least 8 or 9 weeks old and even then?????
     
  4. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

    23,342
    1,243
    448
    Nov 27, 2008
    Jacksonville, Florida
    I had a 5 feet long yellow rat snake take on my only adult Buff Orpington hen several years ago in the middle of the night. if I hadnt heard her screaming, she wouldve been dead the next morning. I dispatched the snake.
     
  5. NewOldMotherHen

    NewOldMotherHen Out Of The Brooder

    84
    0
    39
    Apr 23, 2011
    Shenandoah Valley
    I guess my chicks will have to remain on my enclosed back porch longer than I had planned-- unless I can build some kind of snake-proof pen to set inside the smokehouse. Would the chicks be safe inside a wooden frame completely enclosed with hardware cloth?
     
  6. aprophet

    aprophet Chillin' With My Peeps

    3,799
    14
    209
    Jan 12, 2010
    chesapeake Va.
    Quote:The hardware cloth is a good start most folks coops are really hard to weasel/mink snake proof the corrugated roofing a lot of people use unless it is foamed it is easy for a snake to get in.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by