raccoonIt's something out of a horror movie.

You come home from a fun, barn dance/Halloween party with your young family to find your livestock slaughtered in their pen, blood spattered everywhere, corpses ripped to shreds.  A gory end to a family's pets - and food supply.

This happened to my son's teacher recently, and it got me to thinking about the buildings people use for chicken coops, thinking 'they'll do' against poultry predators.  That wasn't necessarily the case here, but I've seen some pretty rickety set-ups that are just massacres waiting to happen.

With the cost (in time mostly) involved in raising chickens for eggs or meat, you really don't want to lose even one bird.  So how do you keep your chickens safe from predators?

The House

It's a common thought to want to 'repurpose' an existing building for use as a chicken coop.  I mean, why not use that neat old shed?  Seems like a logical thought.  I thought it myself - we've got a perfect one here.  Problem is, an old building will likely be full of holes or weak spots where a poultry predator could dig or chew through, gaining access and obliterating your stock.

So what to do?

9/25/2015 9:51:53 PM

My cat got ensnared in a let trap in a neighborhood backyard...It is legal in this suburban street, steps away from city limit. How many raccoon.s, possum.s, cat's and precious foxes, etc must be painfully executed to justify fresh eggs and a chicken dinner. We, as a humane society need to do better at educating and promoting these stronger chicken coops. Thank you

7/11/2013 4:34:55 AM

Call me a cheapskate, but I can't buy into the $3000 hen house.  And, I'll tell you why...

For less than $400 I have a Livestock Guardian Dog that not only protects my poultry, but also my goats, cattle, and horses.  He's a great pal, to boot.  Chases down any critter, including predatory dogs.  (If a friendly dog wanders onto the farm he'll just go say hi - he can tell the difference).

Now, if you're not intersted in a LGD, or not willing to do what it takes to own one, then by all means build Fort Knox, because that's what you probably need!  These dogs are not for everyone.  While they keep your stock safe, they can be a pain in the kiester once in a while.

We have 1/2 Anatolian Shepherd, 1/2 Great Pyrenees at our place.

You can see them at:

8/22/2012 2:41:48 AM

300 years!? even if they dont do it thats a lot of travel.

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