stupid, or should I say too smart, racoon!

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by firedove, Mar 25, 2009.

  1. firedove

    firedove Songster

    Nov 10, 2008
    Fitzwilliam NH
    My DH looked out the window this morning and said "did you let the chickens out?" Suffice it to say I had no idea what he was talking about. I went out there post haste to find that the door to the coop was open with the caribeener (sp?) clip was on the ground. We know that there has been a raccoon around but this must have taken the thing a mighty effort to open it, hold it open, and maneuver it through the latch. The clip we have is not easy to open!

    Thankfully all the hens are safe and accounted for, no obvious injury to any of them. We will now be moving the outside feed bin away from the door since the darn thing must have been been sitting on it to reach the latch. I had thought it was my goats that have been caving in that lid all the time but now I'm pretty darn sure that bugger has been at this for a while now trying to figure out the latch.

    I'm just glad the girls are OK. It's a big door so if it swung open the girls probably flew out over the coon's head before they could be cornered and caught. I know that when I open the door to let them out they fly out at my shoulder height if they have been roosting. If they are on the floor they just calmly hop out.

  2. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    Sounds like you dodged the bullet.

    Me, I'd be trapping coons, tonight.
  3. Hard to believe a coon could do that and equally hard to believe all the girls escaped unscathed. Lucky indeed........Pop
  4. firedove

    firedove Songster

    Nov 10, 2008
    Fitzwilliam NH
    I'm lacking a trap but gonna have to make a trip to my friend's house soon to borrow hers! I'm gonna go call her and see if I can come by tonight.
  5. Badlatitude

    Badlatitude Songster

    Feb 24, 2009
    We had 2 raccons for a while. Bolth were picked up as fured out young they mother killed by a car. Their names were Frick and Frack. Untill you get rid of said break in artist... your in for mind games!

    They could open the cage closuer on the cage we had them in. We started adding clips and stuff WITH the exsisting latch thingy
    shower curtin clips bolth types- OPENED
    Caribeaner - OPENED
    Caribeaner with threaded sleeve on it - OPENED
    Threaded shackle - OPENED
    child lock- OPENED
    Wired it closed - OPENED
    Master lock with a key - Fixed* lol

    They will open pretty much anything if they want to short of a lock. Try putting some form of a bolt verticle on the top of the door to that must be help UP while the door is pulled open. Or buy a lock and just hang the key on a nail next to the door maybe.

    BTW Frick and Fracks progress was monitored by a licensed rehabilitator. They were trained on wild foods and were released on Independance day (July 4th)

  6. Chicken Fruit

    Chicken Fruit Songster

    Feb 25, 2009
    Echo Homestead
    I scared the bejoosies out of a possum last night snooping around my coop. I happened to go out to check on the chicks through the window and there he was.

    I yelled at him to get out of my yard, and he about tripped over himself trying to waller away.

    Glad it wasnt a racoon... yeesh!
  7. kartking22

    kartking22 Songster

    Jan 12, 2008
    It really sounds to me that your preditor is not a racoon even though they are a bit crafty. This sounds more like a human preditor. Do you have neighbor kids that may be interested in your chickens? Have a curiosity to " I just wanted to look at them" type of situation? When the chickens got out, they ran off cuz they didn't know how to get them back in? Just a more likely scenario than a racoon that graduated from Harvard.
  8. coffeelady3

    coffeelady3 Froths Milk for Hard Cash

    Jun 26, 2008
    Tacoma, WA
    Quote:I agree. If it was a raccoon, you would have lost some hens! Any coon smart enough to open the caribeener wouldn't be dumb enough to forget dinner!
  9. firedove

    firedove Songster

    Nov 10, 2008
    Fitzwilliam NH
    I've been thinking it's the coon because the neighbor kids wouldn't have to sit on the plastic trash barrel food bin, and we have seen coon tracks around the coop recently. As Badlatitude mentioned, opening the clip isn't the hardest thing for a determined raccoon. If the caved in feed bin was an indicator, the coon was at this for about a week, coming every night to figure out how to get in. When you open the latch on my coop door it swings wide open. If the hens saw a threat in the doorway they would have flown from the high roost they sleep on, right out the door which is nearly 8' of vertical space, they easily could have cleared the coon's reach. Then they probably scattered, they are good at avoiding predators when they are outside, plus they may have sought shelter in the barn stall with the goats. The goats would not have tolerated a raccoon intruder coming in their stall.

    What ever the case, I picked up the trap tonight and I will set it tomorrow afternoon. Hopefully I will have the coon in the trap by Saturday morning! Then I will dispatch it and reset the trap in case coon has buddies.

  10. Badlatitude

    Badlatitude Songster

    Feb 24, 2009
    throw a can of sardines in oil in the trap with the lid cracked open and zip tie the pull ring to the trap wire in the back. Even the craftiest coon will catch himself that way

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