Worried -- What would you do?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by SkyWarrior, Jun 30, 2010.

  1. SkyWarrior

    SkyWarrior Songster

    Apr 2, 2010
    Wilds of Montana
    I brought home the 4 BO chicks and mystery chick yesterday. People have looked at their photos and think they're about 3-4 weeks old, and I concur. I put them in a big dog kennel away from the other chickens and gave them food and water. So far, so good.

    Today, when I got home from a martial arts class, I checked on them and heard squeaking. Next to the crate was a rat or mouse baby (size of a quarter -- newborn? Eyes weren't open). When I looked around, there were three more of these rodent babies scattered in a circle around the crate. [​IMG] I scooped them all up, killed them and got rid of them. [​IMG]

    Now, this had me worried about the chicks. They're fine right now, but I was concerned that maybe tonight they wouldn't be. So, I put them in a smaller crate in the coop/pen that has hardware cloth around the bottom and is roofed with hardware cloth. All my older chicks (14-20 weeks old) are in the coop and surround the little chicks' crate. This was the same pen I used for the brooder, so it's relatively secure and I didn't get rats in there even though we had an earlier rat infestation that I took care of with rat bait. (I hate using the stuff).

    So, should I worry about the chicks tonight? I keep a light on for the birds just to prevent anyone going into a stupor. I would think 19 older chicks (17 pullets and 2 roos) would be enough of a deterrent along with the two geese and turkey next to their pen. What do you think?[​IMG]
  2. paddock36

    paddock36 Songster 9 Years

    Dec 24, 2008
    Ocala, Florida
    As far as your older birds I would think they will be sleeping too and won't even notice if there was a rat unless it was after them. As far as the chicks, if you have hardware cloth all around the crate then I would think they would be ok. Are you sure they were baby rats? We recently found a litter of dead baby squirrels that fell out of their nest and died. Could they have been squirrels?
  3. SkyWarrior

    SkyWarrior Songster

    Apr 2, 2010
    Wilds of Montana
    Quote:Pretty sure. Or mice. This is in my barn and I doubt a squirrel would get in. I looked up and couldn't see a nest of any sort. Not sure what to think.

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