So much for Free Range

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Ronnie2, Apr 17, 2017.

  1. Ronnie2

    Ronnie2 Chillin' With My Peeps

    133
    28
    73
    Mar 12, 2017
    Palestine, Texas
    I came back from church yesterday, but didn't notice anything amiss, until I started counting hens on the roost. I was 3-short out of six, still have rooster. I got on 4-wheel mule and in the front yard, 30-feet from front porch, I found where the first had been attacked with only scattered breast feathers present. On down the side yard I found an intact dead hen, with only some blood where she had been bitten, but another clump of feathers lay a few feet away. Neighbor had already warned me about a big dark coyote, but with early Alzheimer, which I'm taking medication to just slow it down, I forgot about that coyote. Now I'm torn about just giving buff orpington chickens to my son to take, or build a covered run. I am thinking about just leaving them in coup until I get finished. I went out to honeybees hives before church yesterday, and put another full drawn 8-frame honey super on for the bees. Today I need to finish my 1,300 capacity bat house that I have been working on for several months. Would like to get on tractor and start brush hogging my viewing area, 5-acres. Have 1-acre of hairy vetch planted that has just started blooming, just around edges, in the center. and off to one side. And still a little cool yet for full blooming. Just so much to do by myself, wife has my helper tied up in town with our yard, spreading compost. Just so much to do, and here I sit rambling to you, drinking coffee on front porch at farm, 6-miles away from home. You just got to love it.
     
  2. Hillaire

    Hillaire Chillin' With My Peeps

    635
    85
    91
    Mar 13, 2017
    Hudson Valley NY
    predators are the worst especially coyotes. I would do a covered run. My "farm" is amidst a lot of forest so we have predators from time to time I find it best to just have my run secure and not free range just in case... if you do let them free range only do so when you're around and make sure to have a sidearm or rifle hand ;) .
     
    3 people like this.
  3. Ronnie2

    Ronnie2 Chillin' With My Peeps

    133
    28
    73
    Mar 12, 2017
    Palestine, Texas
    Well I got busy and built a 1,600 square foot covered run with 2" chicken wire for roof covering, and 1-inch wire on sides. I used 5-inch treated post. The sides height is 6-foot, and in the middle is 10-foot up to ridge. For my rafters I used high tencile electric fence wire. No openings except for gates that I built from homegrown pine on the farm, along with wooden latches. I bought two DC chicken coop doors, from ChickenDoors.com, one for the layers chickens, and another for the 12- new six day old hens, plus rooster. I had cancelled these chicks over a month ago, but feed store called and said they came in. Being a retired general contractor, I like to build, the bigger the better, plus I don't no nothing about chickens, I'm having a great time learning.
     
  4. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

    82,530
    10,281
    816
    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
    Would love to see photos Ronnie.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by