What size fencing to keep foxes out?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by sstepp, Feb 10, 2010.

  1. sstepp

    sstepp New Egg

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    Sep 18, 2009
    A few days ago we saw two foxes out by our coop checking out the chickens. The enclosure I have is open on top with a fence nearby the foxes could easily climb. Knowing the foxes will figure this out pretty quick I'm building a new enclosure with mesh on top as well as all around. My question is, how small does the metal mesh/fencing have to be to keep the foxes out? How small a hole can they squeeze through? I'm thinking of using a 1"x2" metal mesh. I'm also going to extend the mesh a foot into the enclosure and hold it down with anchors. That way if they dig in they'll run into the metal mesh before my chickens.

    Thought and input please....!

    Thanks,

    Steve
     
  2. scooter147

    scooter147 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The 1 x 2 should work but I would probably go with a 1 x 1. Make sure you buy a strong guage, some of the stuff out there I could chew through.
    Also, extend the wire out from the run. Predators will start digging right at the point in which fence meets the ground, if you run it in they may continue digging past it.
     
  3. J3172

    J3172 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would try to get rid of them as fast as possible and still improve your fence when foxes get in they will clear out all the birds the same day and you will come home to a empty coop and have chicken feet sticking out of the ground in your yard. As for height I've heard of gray foxes climbing trees. But for red I would say about five feet should work.
     
  4. sstepp

    sstepp New Egg

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    Sep 18, 2009
    I thought about 1x1 and would love to use it but it comes in very small rolls and two foot width. So it looks like it will be 1x2 at best. Interesting about extending the mesh out rather than in. Thank you for that!

    Steve
     
  5. sstepp

    sstepp New Egg

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    Sep 18, 2009
    Oops, my mistake - seems the mesh is not 1x2 but rather 2x4. Do you think this is still small enough to keep a fox out. Not sure how small they can make themselves. I assume if the head fits then the whole body would too.

    Steve
     
  6. Opa

    Opa Opa-wan Chickenobi

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    The 2x4 will work fine. Burying the wire is also a good idea. The more secure method would be to add a hot wire 6-8" off the ground.
     
  7. scooter147

    scooter147 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Steve,
    I wouldn't chance it. A full grown may not but a young just out on it's own might be able to.

    Ken
     
  8. bigstack

    bigstack Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 4, 2010
    Texarkana, TX
    2x4 isn't that great for a fox. if you pull the sides of the wire you can make the hole a lil bigger. Yes if they get their head in they will squeeze in. If you have no choice, you can always cover the 2x4 with another layer of some type of fencing. This will help. You really just have to use what you got. If you place the wire out from the coop, ontop of the ground and install a electric fence. the wire they are standing on helps to ground them. Thus giving a better shock. I would place a wire 4 inches off the ground and another at 8. = 2 strands 4 inches apart starting 4 inches from the ground. take a piece of electrical wire and attach it to the fencing material. Then drive a metal spike into the ground and attach the othe end of the wire to it. This ensures the fence is grounded or NEG. and the electric fence will be the POS. when the circuit is completed by an animal.......OUCH!!!!!!

    Good luck and God Bless!
     
  9. gsim

    gsim Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:[​IMG]

    This is a new enclosure? If so, then the 1X2 is fine. I did 2X4 welded wire, galvanized, set in cement. Either way, place a 24" tall run of 1/2" hardware cloth mesh at ground level all the way around to deter coons and foxes from reaching thru to rip pieces off of your chickens. Also stops weasels and most snakes and mice if tight and well fitted. Mine is 6 ft tall and open top. However, I have a fence charger and four hotwires beginning at 8" and ending at 42". Better if you have the space to put your anti-dig skirt outside, buried under a few inches of dirt. You can run a rototiller around the perimeter first and then just rake the dirt/sod back and use it to backfill the wire skirt. Be sure if putting a top on, to lace it tight every 6" because coons, foxes, and bobcats will probe to find a place to start bending/working to enlarge an opening. Coons and bobcats are very strong. All preds are very patient. Do yourself a favor and install a really good fence charger. One time and they never come back.
     
  10. sstepp

    sstepp New Egg

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    Sep 18, 2009
    Thanks so much everyone. I thought you might like to see what I came up with for our pen.

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