How To Prevent Predators From Harming Your Chickens

How To Prevent Predators From Harming Your Chickens
via Flickr

Predators are a problem to every chicken keeper out there. There are many different kinds of predators that can harm and kill your chickens, but we have discussed that already in one of our previous articles. Few days ago we wrote an article about how to prevent your chickens from getting killed by cats and dogs and that motivated some of our readers to ask for an article on how to make their chicken coop predator proof – we at the typesofchicken.com team are happy to oblige.

Close Your Run From Every Side – Even The Top And Underground

How To Prevent Predators From Harming Your Chickens
via Flickr

Some predators can be smarter and more adaptable than you might think. They jump over fences and dig under them in order to get to the sweet prey your chickens represent. What you need to do is close the run on every side with chicken wire and if you think it is necessary add hardware cloth as an extra layer in those spots that you think are not safe enough.

Make sure that the chicken wire runs deep underground and maybe while digging it in – make half a circle pointing to the inside of the coop so that when the predator will dig down will hit in an inside layer of protection. Cover your run with the same material you use for the fences of the run because almost every predator can find a way to jump over them, and even your chickens can escape in the same way.

Get A Guard Dog

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It is totally up to you if your dog is a friend or foe to your chickens. By getting a dog and training it to protect and respect your flock will help you a lot against predators. If you have a loyal dog on your side while preventing predators that dog will be prepared to fight to the death in order to protect your flock. Dogs have a very good reputation as poultry and farm guardians and this is something that every dog owner can confirm. That is why having a guard dog is one of the best ways to stop predators from attacking your chickens.

Do Not Leave Food And Water Outside – EVER!

Food and water can attract predators and that can cause a problem even if those predators don`t get access to the chickens they can still damage the outside of your run. When the outside of your run is damaged if you do not fix it fast the predator will return to finish the job and then get to your chickens.

Decoys And Traps Can Be Very Good Predator Preventers

Put fake plastic or metal animals as decoys outside of your run. The predators will either get scared of them or just try to avoid them in order to get to the run. Place a few traps for the predators around those decoys and you will make sure that the predators will get caught in them.

If You Have No Other Choice

About three to four meters around the run where your chickens don`t have access put pieces of meat with some needles or nails inside them. They will attract the predators and also kill them or hurt them badly enough so they will never ever again get close to your chickens.

How do you prevent predators from harming your chickens? Share your experiences with us in the comment section below or via e-mail support@typesofchicken.com

  • Deb

    I put electric fence about 8 inches above ground on all sides of my coop and turn it on every night when I look them up. Has worked for years.

  • liz

    Suggesting harm to wildlife in some cases is illegal, if not immoral. We walk upright and are a superior species, we can certainly prevent loses by using our spending power and intelligence.

  • Sue

    agree very much with liz that suggesting harm to wild life is not ok. While defending the flock is a responsibility all owners need to do diligently-baiting the predator in then using such barbaric means to possibly injure but not kill them is inhumane. we-in most cases- are smarter than the predator- we should be able to keep our birds safe without needlessly endangering the wildlife trying to survive.

  • Kristopher Fowler

    “put pieces of meat with some needles or nails inside them” …. actually shocked … I get it, protecting MY chickens is MY responsibility, but as a feeling human being I find the quoted suggestion horrific, cant imagine what kind of animal lover would even consider this

  • Carrie

    Meat laced with needles or nails?!?! Seriously???!!! …I’m far from a bleeding heart myself as I have had to protect my own flock from predators, I live in a county with no animal control, and I use “quick” sheriff’s dept approved less torturous methods – using meat laced with needles & nails to bait predators would surely get me arrested, thrown in jail, and charged with animal cruelty!!!!

    • Diane Phillips-Herman

      That line made me sick, too. I love my chickens but I would never slowly torture another animal. I would have traps every where.

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  • Cathy Davis

    Share this? Are you kidding? Needles or nails? Why not anti-freeze for anything else you don’t like? Being at the top of the food chain means I should be able to outsmart a hungry animal without torturing it. This article needs to be removed before someone takes it seriously.