So nervous about raccoons!

shsuozzo

In the Brooder
6 Years
Apr 1, 2013
10
0
22
I found some raccoon prints on our coop! It was their second night outside and I am terrified now.

I have several locks on the doors....



In addition have regular latches as the backup. Is this enough?!?!? HEP!!!
 

bobbi-j

Enabler
11 Years
Mar 15, 2010
15,704
32,292
1,092
On the MN prairie.
It's hard to say if that's enough without knowing what the rest of your coop looks like. Are there any gaps or open spaces? Do you have chicken wire over the windows, or something sturdier? Is the run attached? If so, do you close the pop door from the coop to the run at night? Is the run covered? One thing you could do to ease your mind is put electric fence around your coop. We do that for our sweet corn to keep out coons and deer. We put several strands up. Starting at 5", then 8", 12", 24", and about 48" to keep the coons from crawling under, and the deer from stepping over.
 

shsuozzo

In the Brooder
6 Years
Apr 1, 2013
10
0
22
Hi Bobbi-j,

Yes to all of the above. We close the door and the coop is surrounded by an attached run that we dug around, surrounded with hardware cloth and placed patio pricks on top of hardware cloth. No gaps, except for maybe a sliver between door to coop and frame. Each door has at least 2 ties of locks on them and we even put hardware cloth underneath the nesting boxes tonight because I thought the little bugger might try to get in from underneath that wasn't surrounded by the run.......

thanks for your help!
 

blythspirit

Chirping
6 Years
Mar 11, 2013
293
15
98
Beautiful PNW
Get one of those live traps they sell for cats..bait it and prepare to deal with what ever you catch. Raccoons will keep coming back everynight till they find a way in they are relentless
 

bobbi-j

Enabler
11 Years
Mar 15, 2010
15,704
32,292
1,092
On the MN prairie.
Get one of those live traps they sell for cats..bait it and prepare to deal with what ever you catch. Raccoons will keep coming back everynight till they find a way in they are relentless
That is a biggie. So many people catch something, and then wonder what to do with it. I wouldn't suggest setting a trap unless you're willing to kill what you catch (unless, of course, it's your pet or that of a neighbor). Relocating is not a good option.
 

JanetS

Songster
7 Years
Jun 22, 2012
1,099
64
153
This is the lock that we use on our coop and nesting boxes. We also use hardware cloth. We have nightly visit from raccoons with no issue. Sounds like you're doing all the right things. What about using a game camera? That way you will know what the raccoon is doing.
 

KnoxvilleChick

In the Brooder
7 Years
Jul 5, 2012
49
1
24
East Tennessee
We used to see prints all the time, and have even seen the coons themselves a few times. There are 2 of them, at least. And we are in a city! They've left scratch marks near our latches, but have never gotten in the coop.

Another thing to try is a motion-sensing light. It has really helped us. That, and leaving the dog outside at night when he weather isn't terrible.
 

drlcb

Chirping
7 Years
Jan 5, 2013
72
5
76
Fredericksburg VA 22406
I know it sounds crazy but you can use urine around the perimeter of your property to deter predators.
It should be from an adult male (top predator I'm not being sexist. It has testesterone in it) marking his territory.
It works for me - we have coons, foxes, skunks, and other chicken munchers in my area and they don't come near my flock.
My chickens run free range all day and in the coop locked up at night. Never had any problems except for the occasional hawk
flying around... I also have a pair of English Bulldogs that patrol...
 

ant1

In the Brooder
6 Years
May 21, 2013
16
0
22
Good idea on the urine - although I'm sure the neighbors will think i"m even bat crazier than before.

my worry is that I found one IN the coop. I'm talking a 5x5 coop - I walked in and we were there mano a mano. It was a weird showdown. He made a run for it, I put my boot on him and would have skewered him with the nearby pitchfork but my wife's blood curdling yelp made me think twice. I haven't seen him since.
I'm now much more diligent about tucking and locking them in when dark.

He was gorging on the food when I found him and didn't touch the chickens (who were happily sleeping - it had been dark about 30 mins). Is the rooster failing in his duties or as long as the coon is eating the food in the coop, he probably didn't see it as a threat. Is that normal? Should the rooster have been all in his business?
 

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