Stone tile around coop - safe?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by dadacat, Mar 29, 2016.

  1. dadacat

    dadacat Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 28, 2015
    Hello,

    First time chicken owner here :)

    My chicks are almost 6 weeks old and are pretty much ready for their coop. I got a hen haven:

    http://www.midwesthomes4pets.com/products/hen-haven-chicken-coop

    I am wondering if I can lay stone tile around the coop to prevent predators from digging into the coop? Will this be enough to keep my chicks safe?

    I have just put down two tiles on the corner to "try it out" for now. The tiles are super heavy, I could barley move them myself. Any input welcome :)

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  2. elizabethjg

    elizabethjg Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That's a great idea! I would suggest putting them all the way around the coop though, most predators will try their hardest to get a chicken dinner. [​IMG]
     
  3. dadacat

    dadacat Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks for your input [​IMG] That is the plan, to put one row of the tiles around the coop. I just didn't want to finish it and then find out that it isn't actually that great of an idea. They are so heavy I can barely move them.

    The coop is open on the bottom so I just want to make sure that one row of the heavy tiles around it is sufficient and keep the chicks safe.

    Also there is a gap between coop and run, please see picture. I have to measure it but I am wondering if it is big enough to be a potential problem:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  4. kekstrom

    kekstrom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I second this question. I am predator proofing currently for my first batch of chickens... and have been wondering the same thing.... the small gaps between wood like above. I feel like if they are less than 1/2" and my hardware cloth is 1/2" then I would assume its okay.... but I am no expert.
     
  5. duckmanjim

    duckmanjim Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Id do what I could to cover that gap! A raccoon will use the gap to try and pry it open somehow and wont give up! Its a weak point in your coop and thats what raccoons look for and capitalize on. Love the stone tile idea! Should do the trick to stop diggers!
     
  6. pacorona

    pacorona Out Of The Brooder

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    I would say that ANY opening of ANY size is a potential problem! If a paw can get in, eventually so will the rest of the critter. Also, I'd be sure that the tiles are VERY close to the cage bottom. You would be surprised at what a digger can do between the cage and the tile. But it is better than nothing!! I thought my chicks were safe as well, but those raccoon can really dig deeply!! We added a movement triggered floodlight right near the coop - at least the critters know we are watching them (or maybe think we are?)? LOL
     
  7. dadacat

    dadacat Out Of The Brooder

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    So far I keep the girls inside my house overnight. Those tiles weigh around 20 pounds but I am not sure yet I will go that route. Maybe I end up buying another coop altogether :/ because the other problem with this one is that the gaps of the hardwire stuff isn't that tightly as you can see in the pictures. Any raccoon can reach through it easily. I would be willing to get hardware cloth and add another layer but I just don't know how to attach it safely? Maybe just zip tie it to the frame from the inside?

    Yep yep, the problems one has that is without skills and tools but already went ahead and got chicks :D
     
  8. dadacat

    dadacat Out Of The Brooder

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    Forgot to mention: Adding motion sensored lights sounded like an excellent idea. I already order some off Amazon over the weekend!

    I just wish I could finally find a good solution for a safe home for them. I found a guy on Craigslist that makes custom coops. Maybe I will get him to make a run all around my coop. That way I wouldn't have to worry about the big gaps of the coop anymore and just worry about making the run as safe as possible. My landlord lives further outside of San Diego in the boonies and he said he uses an electric fence to keep raccoons from killing his koi. Maybe I could install something similar around the run...
     
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2016
  9. dadacat

    dadacat Out Of The Brooder

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    Link to the craigslist guy: https://sandiego.craigslist.org/esd/grd/5522286230.html

    Basically I would just get a rectangular run with hardware cloth on all sides but the bottom. Have the coop that I already have inside of this run. This is the area that the whole thing will most likely go. I could let it border to the small stone wall on the left and the fence on the other side. This would leave me the walking area on the left of the small stone wall on the left to get behind the run. The ground is extremely hard and I don't know if i would be able to even dig a small whole in it to burrow the hardware cloth. I could lay tile all round it and put the run on it.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2016
  10. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    Regardless of what you do, that run is only big enough for one or two birds. They will need a bigger run space, or crowding is going to cause issues in another month or two.
     
    1 person likes this.

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