1. wendigo

    wendigo In the Brooder

    May 8, 2013
    I have this problem for about 6 months now and I can't stand it anymore. These **** flying rats get inside the chicken's yard, eat their cereals and poop all over the place. Not to mention they can carry diseases. I added 3 layers of wired fence so I can hardly stick a finger though it. But it won't stop the sparrows. I also have geese. I keep 2 buckets in their side of the coop, one with cereals and one with vegetables (usually cabage). Again, the flying rats eat most of the cereals and poop all over the vegetables. Once I even found one drowned in their water.

    How the hell do I get rid of them? I also tried scarecrows, but only managed to scare the geese. Poisoning isn't an option because I don't want to kill them and even if I tried, there are at least 30. It would be impossible to clean and control. I just want them gone.
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2013

  2. GD91

    GD91 Songster

    Aug 1, 2013
    I saw a program, somebody was (illegally) trapping & selling wild birds by putting bait in a cage with a spring door catch style trapping method.

    I'm thinking, obviously you couldn't sell them, but you could trap the flock & relocate them.
    Have you also looked at your local laws? I don't know about the US, but in the UK it is illegal to trap any wild bird without a permit.

    Also, I don't know if you could even ask for help dealing with sparrows from local sources.... they are hardly what most people would see as a pest unless they also have livestock & a feed tag to consider. [​IMG]
  3. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    What are you going to do with them if you catch them then?
    If you trap a predator, you should be able to dispatch it. Relocation of any trapped animal is not a good idea for many reasons.
    But here's a good Sparrow trap.

    Or you could use a treadle feeder, lots of threads on those here on BYC.
  4. 4 the Birds

    4 the Birds Songster

    Oct 15, 2010
    Westfield, Indiana
    On really cold snowy days, I often have to shoooo a dozen or so sparrows out of my run! They fly in through the run pop door and then hang out in the coop. There is really not much that can be done unless you don't free range and keep the run tightly enclosed with hardware cloth. The sparrows are small enough that they can go through chicken wire and even squeeze under doors with 1 inch gaps! Not much can be done about the opening from the run to the outside for free ranging. I have 2 decoy owls outside and near the coop as well as hanging CD's that flutter in the wind. I have pretty much resigned to letting them steal food and water and then shooing them out when I go over to clean/feed/water each day. I feel your pain!!

    Hard to see but one of my hanging CD's is shown in the upper left. It flutters in the wind and flickers in the sunlight. Does not scare off the birds but I gave it a shot.
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2013

  5. PheasantsFirst

    PheasantsFirst Songster

    Jul 17, 2013
    Eastern Washington
    After fighting for months to keep them out of my pheasant pens by changing feeding habits and adding more netting, they just kept multiplying. Then we got a trap. As of the other day I've caught 55 birds, 20 were starlings, the rest sparrows. THe only problem is that I barely notice the 50 missing. Because they'll never go away willingly if even a couple can get food, the trap is your best bet. Also, I think the only way you could keep them out is by using 1/2 hardware cloth/wire everywhere. Many times I've seen them pop through 1 inch chick wire. I got my trap from here and they seem to be reasonably priced and of good quality. http://www.sparrowtraps.net/
  6. Irishhenman

    Irishhenman Songster

    Jul 2, 2013
    There a couple of things you could do,

    Take the feeders out of the run and start giving your chickens a set daily ration that will be eaten in a few minutes when they are let out in the morning

    Get some very fine netting (I have used the green netting that is used on building sites on scaffolding etc) and put a layer of it around your chickens run (make sure there are absolutely no holes between the runs supports and the netting because the sparrows will find them and go in through them.

    Instead if using traditional feeders get (or make ) a treadle feeder so that the sparrows won't have access to the feed but the chickens can get at it.

    just some suggestions hope they work for you, hope they work
  7. The Lazy L

    The Lazy L Songster

    Dec 16, 2011
    I used 1/2" wire fabric. I have zero problems with "flying rats" or ground Bandits.





  8. conny63malies

    conny63malies Crowing

    Mar 22, 2008
    Annetta Kentucky
    The coon has a slightly embarrassed look on his face. [​IMG]
  9. ChickensRDinos

    ChickensRDinos Songster

    Aug 19, 2012
    Los Angeles
    Can you tell how they are getting in? I have been battling the same problem for awhile now and after adding wire and realized they were digging little whole under the bottom of my coop so I added a layer of pavers under my wood structure. I am about to rebuild and I think I am going to pour a concrete edging.

    You can also try a different feeder that keeps the birds out.

    This is a treadle. You can buy metal ones or make a wood one. I built the one below and it worked pretty well. I have able to train the birds to use it in about a week. My problem is that I had one silkie hen who is especially.....special and she just couldn't do it. But I think she is an exception.


    You could also try an angled, off the ground gravity feeder like this:

    or this PVC version:


  10. FrozenWings

    FrozenWings In the Brooder

    Nov 20, 2013
    I would suggest a small barn cat. Mine loves sparrows, doves, mice, and just about any other small flying pest in the coop. She leaves my chickens alone, and actually is scared of the chickens as they are bigger than her and chase her from their food dishes. My problem is squirrels, but they seem to only grab and run, so I don't mind them so much. Your local animal shelter or Craig's list probably has a great cat just waiting to keep your coop clear of varmints! She sleeps inside the house, we don't have a barn, but loves to patrol the property for critters.

    -Frozen Wings

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by