So a mouse or two is the norm in a chicken coop?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by 4740, Nov 13, 2012.

  1. 4740

    4740 Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 10, 2012
    My coop is actually a garden shed built by my family, so not perfect. I saw the little mouse today when I opened the door, running into a hole. The only food they can get at is the spill from the chickens. No harm if there are not too many?
     
  2. chfite

    chfite Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mice come with families, in a manner not unlike roaches. How much feed they eat matters when the chickens don't get it to make eggs.

    Gnawing critters can cause problems with wiring and attract their own pests. They can get into all manner of other things to make trouble.

    I would try to eliminate the mice. Mice tend to be nocturnal, so the chickens aren't likely to get a chance to eat them on their own.

    Chris
     
  3. Phyrst

    Phyrst Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I've been reading everything I can on mice because I have them in my coop. They cause and can spread all kinds of diseases, the latest being the Huntavirus. Hantavirus is spread through contact with waste, saliva or urine from a type of deer mice. If you feed your chickens a commercial or organic feed, there will be spillage. Spillage brings mice. It's a revolving door! Some people use poisons but I'm scared the feral cats in my area will end up getting it so I use traps. There's a tip on here I use that works better than any other: buy a few of those clear plastic shoe boxes with the pop-on lids. I bought mine at the Dollar General store. Cut a small hole near the bottom of one end - this should be just big enough for a mouse to get inside. My son cut the holes with his hunting knife. They don't have to be perfect but don't make them too big or mice can move around too much. Place several snap traps inside baited with peanut butter. Snap lids on and place in coop. I put some up near the nest boxes and some on the floor. Some people put glue traps inside the shoe boxes. I've heard they work but be aware, mice caught don't always die quick and can make a lot of noise. It's easy to check at a glance if you've caught a rodent and fairly easy to empty. If you don't get control of this problem, the mice can take over. Some of the bigger breeds of chickens eat mice but they need to see them to catch them and mice are most active at night. Chickens don't see well at night! I have an article here that talks abit about the problem.

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/chicken-tv-and-the-story-of-a-flock

    Good luck!
     
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2012
  4. KathyJB

    KathyJB Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I just found some turds on my feed cans. It is war, game on.[​IMG]
     
  5. Enchanted Sunrise Farms

    Enchanted Sunrise Farms Overrun With Chickens

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    As Phyrst said, mice can carry some deadly diseases. At the very least, they pee and poo all over and that is not good. I had 7 little mice get into my tool shed a couple years ago and the mess they left was a nightmare. I had to hire someone to help me pull everything out and disinfect. Some stuff just got tossed. Get rid of them quick. Not even one mouse is acceptable.
     
  6. 4740

    4740 Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 10, 2012
    Wow, that is some strong opinions on the mice. We live on 10 acres of woods. It makes sense to keep the mouse population low in my coop, but for every family I kill another is going to come in looking for the warmth and food in the coop. Its harsh on the outside. I'm not sure I can keep up.
     
  7. mscallisto

    mscallisto Out Of The Brooder

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    I think it depends on your chickens. I had a family of mice in my straw and when I moved it to a sealed container they all scattered. One of my girls spotted them and in seconds she was strutting around with a dead mouse in her beak. She then gobbled it down. Then just last week I opened the hatch to gather eggs and I saw something scurry behind the nests. Next day, one of my girls had a full crop and there was no more mouse. Chickens are fast. If they see something that interests them, look out.
     
  8. Huntress78

    Huntress78 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    No kidding! I have one girl who paces at the door every morning waiting to be let out. She then walks the perimeter of the coop pecking at mouse tunnels....pretty soon one pops out and breakfast is served.[​IMG]
     
  9. Phyrst

    Phyrst Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That's amazing! Wish you could get that on video or photo! I used to find mice when I moved things around in the coop, a nest here or there or a single mouse running for another hiding spot. I had LF chickens then and they'd hunt down anything that moved. One gulp and mouse was gone! I couldn't believe my eyes! Now I just have bantam chickens and they are not interested in mice at all. Thinking of getting a big breed just to keep the mice down!
     
  10. Huntress78

    Huntress78 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'll see if I can catch her doing it on video. These are LF Brahmas and seem to be good hunters of mice and frogs. I hope they will also help keep down the snake population next spring.

    I'm actually kind of surprised they figured out mice are good to eat because last summer I picked up a box and a mouse went running through the flock...they all panicked, jumping up and bumping into each other to get out of it's way. The mouse escaped into my garage.[​IMG]
     

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